Friday, 18 December 2009

Short tale of long-tail

Confined to barracks again today, so kicked off the day with a trawl around Roberts Memorial which was quiet even by the standards of that often tranquil park.
The stroll back home wasn't too exciting either and the most thrilling thing to report was reasonable views of some red crossbills and again there were lots of pine siskin around, unfortunately I couldn't hear any redpolls amongst them.

Spent a part of the afternoon staring out to sea, not in a gormless/glazed-over way you understand, but intentionally looking for waterbirds.
I heard an unusual duck sound and spotted 4 birds flying in and was chuffed to see that they were long-tailed duck. Two drakes and two ducks (pictured). The males were being very vocal - I can't recall the last time I heard a long-tailed duck! Not too common a sound in Morecambe Bay... (older readers in the UK may remember that this species used to go by the rather un-PC name of Oldsquaw in American field guides).
Otherwise, it was pretty much business as usual: common loons (pictured), buffleheads, American wigeon (fewer since the thaw), both goldeneye species (common pictured), horned grebes, red-breasted mergansers, double-crested and pelagic cormorants, surf scoters, mew & Thayer's gulls and 3 common murres. Also the ever-present harbour seals and regular river otters were doing the rounds.

1 comment:

  1. Oldsquaw it is in my un-PC Peterson Eastern Birds(NA)field guide(1980 edition). Don't believe we ever met back in Blighty unless briefly on the Lancs Atlas project but enjoying your tales from BC.