Tag Archives: Pink-footed Goose

7/2/14 Hornsea Mere + the coast

Went to Hornsea Mere on Friday morning with RL. Started at Kirkholme Point. Brian Wilson had just had the Great White Egret but it appeared to have walked into the reeds. Went round to the hide. Eight Scaup were close, but the no sign of the ninth.

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Greater Scaup [male+2 females]

The drake Red-crested Pochard was also close in but like the rest of the ducks was having an early afternoon siesta. Four female Pintail were new in, a scarce bird this mild winter.

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Didn’t see the female Velvet Scoter but Mark Robinson had it later. The Red-necked Grebe was seen again at the west end on Tuesday. More news from the mere here.

Went to Barmston early this afternoon. Had the Kumlien’s Gull in flight distantly to the north of the caravan park. In common with the rest of  our coastline today only a few Red-throated Divers and Great Crested Grebes on the sea. At our next spot, Ulrome, RL picked up an immature Shag, a rare sight south of Flamborough Head. Also I had a few Guillemots flying north off Atwick as well as five Sanderling on the beach.

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The regular Far Grange hybrid goose with Mallards

Three Pink-footed Geese and a Barnacle Goose were with the Greylags by the pond at Skirlington.

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Pink-footed Goose

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Barnacle Goose [of unknown origin]

A male Hen Harrier was seen over Tophill Low NR late afternoon.

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Filed under Barmston, Birds in East Yorkshire, Hornsea Mere, Nature in East Yorkshire, Tophill Low NR

Hornsea Mere and the coast


On Sunday morning went to Hornsea Mere with ML and RL. JH had seen nothing of note from the hide so went straight to Kirkholme Point. Immediately saw a Great White Egret sat in a tree north of the car park with several Grey Herons.

Great White Egret + Grey Heron

Great White Egret with Grey Heron off Kirkholme Point

The second Egret was more distance in Decoy Bay. Also heard, then saw 39 Pink-footed Geese flying south. The Danish ringed Black-headed Gull was again around the parked cars.

Danish-ringed Black-headed Gull Hornsea Mere 141213a RL

Danish ringed Black-headed Gull

Moved to Barmston. Tide well out and a lot of people on the beach. No sign of the Kumlien’s Gull there or in the fields north of the caravan park. Later found the Kumlien’s was on Bridlington North beach all day. Interestingly it had been seen there this time last year. Also at Barmston 7 Little Gulls and 35 Snow Buntings had been seen this morning.

Did a sea watch off Ulrome early afternoon. The highlight was at least 4 adult Gulls as well as a drake Goosander, 6 Red-throated Diver, 12 Guillemots, 4 Goldeneye, 12 Shelduck and a Pink-footed Goose that flew north overhead.

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Erosion at Ulrome caravan park

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Failed coastal defences at Ulrome [Man Proposes, God Disposes-Landseer]. 

Finished the day in the Hornsea Mere hide. Again no interesting gulls but had the female Velvet Scoter and a least 7 Scaup. Saw one of the Great White Egrets flying west to roost late afternoon.

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Female Velvet Scoter

Scaups and Coot Hornsea Mere 050114 RL

Greater Scaup with Coot and Wigeon-RL

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Filed under Barmston, Birds in East Yorkshire, Hornsea Mere, Nature in East Yorkshire, Ulrome

Solitary Whooper Swan at High Eske NR

Following the presence of Whooper Swans and wild geese at High Eske NR on 4/11 things looked good for another interesting winter this has so far turn out to be a false hope. I hadn’t been up there for a month but Eric Clubley had and conformed that the Whooper Swan hadn’t stay on.

14/12 RL and ML visited High Eske NR on Saturday and did find a lone juvenile Whooper Swan and juvenile Pink-footed Goose.

They also visited Hornsea Mere where the Grey Phalarope was again showing well from Kirkholme. Also both Great White Egrets, 2 Egyptian Geese and a Danish-ringed Black-headed Gull.

Danish-ringed Black-headed Gull  Hornsea Mere 141213b RL

Danish ringed Black-headed Gull-RL

RL and I had also seen the Long-tailed Duck and female Velvet Scoter on Friday as well as a very showy Peregrine, repeatedly harassing Carrion Crow on Swan Island. I also managed a distant view of the Grey Phalarope.

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Female Velvet Scoter-RL

Also earlier we had another Peregrine at Swinemoor as well as  410 Wigeon, 50 Teal, 11 Shoveler, 200 Lapwing, 15 Redshank, 2 Dunlin and 5 Golden Plover.

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Peregrine-Swinemoor-RL

A 2nd winter Iceland Gull was seen at Tophill Low NR on Saturday afternoon as well as the regular female Scaup. A Galloway and 2 Belted Galloways are now grazing South Scrub. Told one of the Belted Galloways is very friendly. Unfortunately they seem to prefer to defecate on the footpath!

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Galloway and Belted Galloways

A Black-throated Diver was off Barmston but no recent news on the Kumlien’s Gull.

15/12 I made it to High Eske NR on Sunday morning. Unaware of my friends’ previous visit had the pleasure of finding the Whooper with the Mute Swans and the Pinkfoot with the regular Greylag flock at High Eske farm.

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Juvenile Whooper and Mute Swan.

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Juvenile Pink-footed Goose with Greylag

The lack of Great Crested Grebes was of interest, in fact wildfowl hasn’t reached usual winter numbers yet with only Wigeon approaching them. Had a look at Leven Carrs. A cracking male Marsh Harrier flying west over the river was nice but otherwise only a Kestrel and Common Buzzard.

Did some more birding this afternoon. See here.

The Grey Phalarope at Hornsea Mere was only seen distantly off the Cormorant Trees today. Dave Bryan noticed a growth on the phalarope’s face but I’ve yet to check RL’s photos for it. Nothing else reported.

No bird reports but Welton Waters was hit hard by the recent floods with detritus including an old frig washed into Brough Angling Complex.

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Filed under Barmston, Birds in East Yorkshire, High Eske NR, Hornsea Mere, Nature in East Yorkshire, Swinemoor, Tophill Low NR, Welton Waters

Whooper Swans return to High Eske NR

4/11 With the end of my 3 week holiday coinciding with end of British birding time and the added complication of major changes at work I found it impossible to get out after work last week. Fortunately Monday was a lighter day at work and mid afternoon found me at High Eske NR. Walking towards the pit I was sure I’d seen 2 White-fronted Geese dropping onto Molescroft Carr with Greylag. However with most of the geese obscured by the flood-bank and the position of the sun not helping I was unable to confirm. Reaching the pit I quickly located 14 adult Whooper Swans. One had a red leg but I was unable to read it today.

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Whooper Swans and Greylag Geese-High Eske NR

The geese flock flew in and I was able to confirm my sighting of 2 adult Eurasian Whitefronts as well as a juvenile Pinkfoot. Walked north to Leven Canal in the hope of Short-eared Owls or harriers but only had the regular pair of  Kestrels. Had a Grey Wagtail in the derelict lock on the way back south, Noticed a wake in the river. Too obvious for an Otter and no boats but then I saw the head of a large Common Seal swimming south, the first I’ve seen for a few years, since the end of  the invasion that had annoyed the anglers.

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Grey Wagtail-Leven Canal lock

Getting back to the pit, as the light was fading I located a Green Sandpiper, at the far end of the island. Also 5 Little Egrets had come in to roost in the south west corner.

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Whooper Swans at dusk-High Eske NR

5/11 Only managed a walk on Willerby Carrs on Tuesday. Had Common Buzzard flying west. My 3rd in Cottingham in the same number of weeks.

Hornsea Mere continues it’s purple patch. Check here for details.

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Filed under Birds in East Yorkshire, Cottingham, High Eske NR, Hornsea Mere, Nature in East Yorkshire

Goodbye Pectoral Sandpiper?

5/10 On Saturday afternoon went for my 4th [and last?] view of the Swinemoor juvenile Pectoral Sandpiper found a week ago. As before it was on it’s favoured pool just south east of the humpback bridge, accompanied by the usual Ruff. Again both stupidly approachable. Nearly flushed by a dog but by luck [or decency on the part of it’s owner]  it decided not to run through the water.

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Pectoral Sandpiper and Ruff-Swinemoor

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Pectoral Sandpiper-Swinemoor-4/10/13 

The other remaining pool further north which had held the Ruff and Dunlin on Sunday was nearly dry.

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Nettle-tap-Anthophilia fabriciana-Swinemoor-4/10/13

Moved to High Eske NR. Walked directly to Leven Canal in hope of owls and other birds of prey but nothing doing.  Timed my return south so that having completed the circuit of High Eske would be in place to see any waders arriving to roost. However despite Tim Cowley reporting both waders missing to the south neither arrived. Also no reports of either roosting further north at Tophill Low NR during the week.

The wildfowl numbers were approaching winter numbers including 400+ Greylags but nothing unusual yet.

6/10 Went to Tophill Low NR with ML and RL on Sunday morning. A Great White Egret was seen earlier over North Marsh by, among others, Dave Tucker who’d also struck lucky with an Otter. The Egret was seen again late morning.

Joined JH in car park hide. 11 Pintails on the reservoir. Walked south to Watton NR. Still a good number of Migrant Hawkers and Common Darters on the wing, as well as a few Speckled Woods.

Migrant Hawker

Migrant Hawker

Met Geoff Barker as we approached the hide and were assured there was nothing of interest. However on immediately opening the flaps 12 Pink-footed Geese were seen with the Greylags then while trying for a Garganey, among the Teal, I found a Jack Snipe bobbing at the back.

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Pink-footed Geese-Watton NR

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Jack Snipe-Watton NR

Also another 3 Pintail and 2 late Swallows. While we were in the hide RL was on the opposite side of Barmston Drain with Hull Daily Mail photographer Kate Woolhouse. He had done an interview with Hull Daily Mail’s James Campbell about HVWG’s concerns regarding the sale of Watton Nature Reserve, during the week. For details on the sale check here.

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RL with Kate Woolhouse on Watton NR

Moved to Atwick this afternoon for a look for migrants but the only thing of notes was Harlequin Ladybird I found on JH’s car’s bonnet as he pulled up. A first for RL.

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Harlequin Ladybird-Atwick

Moved to Far Grange which was also quiet but had a Kingfisher at The Lakes which was good for the site.

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Pair of Migrants Hawkers-The Lakes at Far Grange

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The regular “Heinz” Goose-Far Grange

Did a sea watch from the east end of Far Grange golf course but only a Red-throated Diver and a juvenile Gannet of interest.

Both Richard Jennings and Tim Cowley had only the Ruff on Swinemoor this morning. Richard also had an interesting pale Buzzard over Leven Carrs but thought only Common. I am not working this week so should get a chance to look for it.

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Filed under Birds in East Yorkshire, High Eske NR, Moths, Nature in East Yorkshire, Tophill Low NR

High Eske NR and Swinemoor

Since the start of bright nights and better weather I’ve found myself too busy in the field to blog. However after a good afternoon out felt inspired to put something in writing.

23/4 Went to High Eske on Tuesday afternoon. Water level higher than on Saturday and the seasonal islands were covered again. Two female Goosanders were on the permanent island, I had one on Saturday.

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Female Goosanders-High Eske NR

c20 Mute Swans on the pit, presumably pushed off Arram Carrs. No sign of the Whoopers Swans.Heard a familiar call, not heard since last autumn, and picked up 2 Greenshank flying in from the north. Spent a few minutes on the island then continued south. Walked north and checked the few swans remaining on Arram Carrs but no Whoopers so looks like they have departed. Good numbers of ducks, particularly Teal, on Leven Carrs scrape but numbers down on last visit. Only wader was a single Snipe. Also a few Yellow Wagtails. Only warblers heard were a Chiffchaff by Leven Canal and 3 Willow Warblers around the reserve. A few Swallows over the water but no over hirundines. Getting back to the reserve saw 5 Pink-footed Goose drop in to join the feral Greylags. Later in fields.

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Pink-footed Geese-High Eske NR

Also 5 Yellow Wagtails and joined the White Wagtail and Pied Wagtails on the “scrape’.

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White Wagtail-High Eske NR

An Oystercatcher appears to be on a nest on the main island.

Went to Swinemoor this evening. Disappointed not to reconnect with the Greenshanks but had at least 5 Little Ringed Plovers, 7 Redshank, a Snipe and many Lapwing. Also good numbers of Teal, Wigeon, Mallard and Gadwall and 4 Shelduck. At least 3 White Wagtails but only one Yellow Wagtail.

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Filed under Birds in East Yorkshire, High Eske NR, Nature in East Yorkshire

April 7 at Tophill Low NR

7/4 Went to Tophill Low NR with Roy on Sunday morning. Started in D reservoir car park hide. No sign of the Black-necked or any Goosander.

The Red-necked Grebe was still on O reservoir.

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Red-necked Grebe-Tophill Low NR

The Pink-footed Goose and a pair of Little Ringed Plover were still on Watton NR.

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Pink-footed Goose-Watton NR

A few Chiffchaffs now singing.

There were a few Redwing in the works compound possibly part of the big movement on the coast.

Had a Peacock butterfly from South Marsh East no.2 hide.

Checked the D wood feeders this afternoon. At least 2 Willow Tits and a Marsh Tit but no sign of the Nuthatch reported earlier. Also a Blackcap sang briefly.

2 Otters had been seen on North Marsh late morning. Gave it a few minutes but no repeat performance.

For more from Tophill Low NR check here.

Did Swinemoor from Weel Road early evening. Much as yesterday but the pair of Pintail were back and finally caught up with a pair of Little Ringed Plover.

Kumlien’s Gull still at Barmston.

For more sightings in the Hull Valley check here.

Despite the cold Africa Gomez had some insect sightings today.

Weather like, a bit of a false promises day. Started out wearing coat but no hat, by lunchtime had got rid of the coat, however by early evening at Swinemoor it was coat and hat. Forecast is currently colder again first half then possibly milder but with more chance of rain second half. We’ll see.

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April 7, 2013 · 6:37 pm