Monday, 20 May 2013

Lizard (12th May)

A days birding with Dan down to the Lizard, bypassing Helston Pool for a brief wildfowl count.  Not much on the boating lake other than the long-staying Whooper Swan.  Little did we know that in a couple hours time a stonking drake Garganey would arrive, by which time we were already down at the Lizard.

Whooper Swan with Mute Swans at Helston boating Pond

Next stop, Loe Pool, were we spent a little longer than intended walking around the perimeter of the lake.  2 Dunlin in the far northern corner, a very showy Cetti's Warbler and I saw my first REED WARBLERS of the year.  Also of note, were 130+ Swallows mingled with the odd Sand Martin (fresh arrivals in the drizzle), 2 Sanderling on the beach and a Wheatear.

Moving on down to the Lizard, we stopped just before reaching Lizard Village, where we located a singing Grasshopper Warbler showing very well down to a couple meters!

Grasshopper Warbler reeling

Dinker moth caterpillar


Our intention, once arriving at the Lizard was to do a little sea-watching so we sat ourselves down at Bass Point logging the passage past the headland.  Unfortunately, it seemed we had chosen the wrong spot as Lizard Point was getting a far better passage just under a mile further around the point!  Anyway, we were still content with the 400+ Manx Shearwaters (no Balearic's amongst them unfortunately), my first BONXIE of the year and plenty of Guillemots and Razorbills.  Dan also pointed out 2 Great Northern Divers on the sea and a further 3 Whimbrel flew past.  A ringed Chough was a nice surprise during our sea-watching session as it came to land infront of us, always a nice Lizard specialty and a welcome sight.

the east coast of the Lizard peninsula

Chough at Bass Point


 We made one final stop on the way back Croft Pascoe Pool where I heard another singing Grasshopper Warbler.  Unfortunately, this one decided to remain in cover as it was beginning to rain more heavily now.  A pair of Stonechats singing nearby were also a pleasant sight.

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