Sunday, 3 September 2017

Stormies and possible Long-tailed Skuas

Seawatching today from 06:40 - 14:00 in south-easterlies didn't produce a great quantity of birds with much of the time spent staring at a birdless sea. There was however a nice mix of species including good numbers of skuas and two European Storm Petrels, one of which passed within a couple of hundred metres. Totals below:

Arctic Skua - 9
Great Skua - 1
Pomarine Skua - 2
Skua sp. - 7 (Including two possible Long-tailed Skuas. One flew north at 08:45, the other went south at 13:00 a minute after three Arctics, and was noticablly smaller with a bouyant tern-like flight. The timing would have matched perfectly with a pale juvenile Long-tailed Skua which passed Berry Head at 13:55, but for the fact that I couldn't pick out any pale on my bird!)
Balearic Shearwater - 5 (all passing relitively close)
Common Tern - 2
Sandwich Tern - 20
Kittiwake - 100
Common Scoter - 138

Later in the afternoon at Flow Point, there were four Dunlin, 16 Ringed Plover, 10 Redshank, five Common Sandpiper (one at Passage House) and a Wheatear. A Common Tern was on one of the buoys with a dozen Sandwich Terns also present.

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