Wednesday, 26 October 2011

Bamburgh and Seahouses - 24th October 2011

Our last day in Northumberland was unfortunately very windy, which meant that the birding was quite difficult to put it nicely! Despite the winds, however, we mananged a quick trip to Stag Rocks at Bamburgh and a look around the harbour at Seahouses.

Stag Rocks is one of my favourite places because, during the winter months, views of Purple Sandpiper are almost guaranteed. Today we managed to find a group of approximately 15 feeding with Turnstones and Oystercatchers. There were also a few Common, Black-headed Gulls, an adult Gannet and a late tern species. I managed to get a few photos of the tern, which had a short, black beak. When I checked Collins, it showed adult winter plumaged Common, Arctic and Roseate Tern all with black beaks, so I can't identify it with 100% accuracy. Any ideas?

Tern species

After about half an hour, we drove down to Seahouses, had some chips(!) and then scanned the harbour for anything blown in by the strong winds. Unfortunately nothing extraordinary was present, but we did see a raft of 10 Eider Duck, a Rock Pipit, Starling, several more Turnstones a Shag, 4 fly past Barnacle Geese (real ones most likely from Svalbard!),and Herring, Great Black-backed and Black-headed Gulls.

Great Black-backed Gulls and a juvenile Herring Gull.

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