Sunday, 14 April 2013

South coast revels

Weekends can often mean a trip to the south coast and Weymouth, and this time we made it just a day trip. To combine parental visiting with doing something fun, we got up REALLY early and were at Ferrybridge by about 7.15, just after dawn. The journey down even got a barn owl, really close and perched to within 20 feet as we parked up in a lane after seeing it hunting in the verge. Always a lovely bird to see at any time.
Ferrybridge was pretty empty, so we pretty much went straight down to the bill. The wind was off the sea and it wasn't just us who thought the sea might be productive as there were already about 20 'scopes pointing out from the monument. Nobody had seen much though, and neither did i in about 20 minutes, apart from guillemots, razorbills and shags going in and out of the breeding cliffs. One lone fulmar and a kittiwake did bulk up the year list, but no skuas.. Judith had gone off photographing waves so i trotted off after her, picking up purple sandpiper on the rocks, as well as wheatears and rock pipits.
On the way back to Weymouth we stopped off at Radipole to get the long-staying (and controversial) hooded merganser, which was looking particulalry smart. There were loads of swallows swooping around together with a few sand martins but no sign of med gulls in the car park. One last bonus was a single willow warbler in John and Rita's garden. Year list up to 135.