Friday, 9 May 2014

Great Spotted Cuckoo!! (4th May)

With the first half day taken up with helping out on campus Eco Soc stall, it was only later that day that the opportunity arose for Dan, Birdy and I to head down to Lizard for the GSCuckoo.  I still had to walk to campus to help out at the stall but made a quick stop via Gorrangorras, Penryn River, where I logged 2 Whimbrel.  The Cuckoo had been showing throughout the day (albeit badly) before we got there but on arrival there was no sign of it at all.  The drive down was quite eventful though as Dan did very well by picking out a Red Kite circling northwards over Polwin Manor Farm (a scarce bird for the far SW, particularly Cornwall!) and as we were driving down the track to Carn Goon, I managed to pick out the sound of a reeling Grasshopper Warbler at the side of the track.  Sure enough, we stopped, looked out the window and there it was sat reeling away at the top of a clump of bramble and gorse, a brilliantly easy year tick!

The search for the cuckoo was then to ensue and we spent longer than we had hoped tramping up and down the various footpaths and bridleways in the vein hope of connecting with it.  I must admit it was rather frustrating that the other "observers" weren't putting in their fair share of effort as they simply remained rooted to one spot staring at the one area directly in front of them whilst Dan and I scouted the entire area as thoroughly as we could.  However, the reward came on my final walk down to Kynance Cove, just as the sun began to reach the horizon the GREAT SPOTTED CUCKOO came shooting across the moors between a few clumps of bushes!!!  Frantically waving to the rest of the people, a small stampede ensued and before long all but two people secured decent flight views of it before it went to roost.

The Great Spotted Cuckoo spot

Other species of note included a showy Cuckoo and a flyover Marsh Harrier without a tail.

Many thanks, as always, to Dan for the driving!

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