Tuesday, 8 October 2013

West Cornwall Birding (6th October)

A full days birding with visitors from Herts. It was good to catch up with Sh4rpy, Brendan, Paul and Tony with whom I toured the south west part of Cornwall jamming in on some quality birds. We squeezed all five of us into the car and began a long trip round to the Roseland.   As the crow flies it's only half a dozen miles away but thanks to the Carrick Roads, we had to do a 50 mile detour via Truro to reach the other side!  On arrival, we wondered the fields and football pitches but to little avail. Our first site stop did however produce a calling YELLOW-BROWED WARBLER in the tall hedge in the car park at Gerrans and we later relocated it calling nearer the church.  I was desperately cleaning out my bins as I could see something interesting hopping about in the bush (my bins were still fogged up from my Lizard trip several days ago) so by the time I had raised them to my eyes it was too late and only Brendan and Tony had connected. I did however locate a Spotted Flycatcher and numerous Meadow Pipits in the nearby horse field.  Other species of note included flyover Skylarks, 1 Reed Bunting and a Clouded Yellow flew past.

Our next destination, Hayle Estuary, rewarded us with yet more excellent views of the BLACK-WINGED STILT from the causeway.  Whilst stood on the causeway, another birder approached us and pointed down to the nearby bank exclaiming something along the lines of "that isn't a Wood Sand is it?"  Sure enough the bird wasn't a Wood Sand but in fact a stunning juvenile LESSER YELLOWLEGS!  We had only just set eyes on it, rattled of a couple digiscope pics and pointed out a couple features in favour of this species before it flew in the direction of Lelant Saltings Station where it was lost to view.

Black-winged Stilt, showing well!

and the Lesser Yellowlegs, also showing well!

We left shortly afterwards as Brendan wanted to head back to the caravan site.  We made a brief stop at Treen first and whilst I scanned the fields for the recent Richard's Pipit (to no avail), the other connected with 2 YBWs near St Levan.  All I managed was a calling Whimbrel.  Back at the caravan site, Chris, Paul and I scanned the surrounding heathland and were rewarded with 2 Whinchats, 2 Ravens and 2 Stonechats.

Chris and I lost the vote to head for Pendeen and instead we all retraced our steps back to Hayle were we reconnected with the Lesser Yellowlegs and Black-winged Stilt (both showing exceptionally well!)  A couple other highlights including Little Stint, 2 Lapwing, 1 Brent Goose, 2 Raven, 1 juv. Ruff a lingering Osprey and my personal highlight and Cornish Tick ..........STOCK DOVE!

good views of the Lesser Yellowlegs (digiscoped)

I was kindly given a lift back to Falmouth and en route made a short stop at Marazion for a casual walk along the beach and scan of the marsh.  I picked out a Whinchat on the marsh, 4 Turnstone on the beach and 2 Sandwich Terns offshore but a Snipe was the only other species of note.  Quite a few Pied Wagtails were also assembled on the beach before flying across the road to the marsh were they went to roost.

Many thanks to the chaps from Herts for offering me a lift, it was great to catch up with you.  Good luck with the rest of your Cornwall visit!

1 comment:

  1. Samuel, busy birding as ever. How nice to meet some of your friends from Hertfordshire down in your local patch. Sorry to learn all about your huge effort to cycle to Lizard for a bird which was not there in the first place.
    Have a good week. L M