Autumn winds

by on Oct.17, 2011, under Birdwatching, Druridge Bay, Northumberland, Southeast Northumberland

Thursday afternoon found me leading an afternoon of birdwatching, and searching for Otters around our local area; Druridge Bay and southeast Northumberland.

I collected Ruth and Margaret from the Swan at Choppington and we drove the short distance to Newbiggin to collect Mike and Maggie (for their second trip with us this week), Ben and Siobhan.  A ghostly white Mediterranean Gull drifted by the car before we headed north.  The River Coquet produced one of my own favourite wildlife experiences as we watched Salmon leaping, and Cormorants, Grey Herons and Goosanders fishing.  Lapwings, Redshank, Curlew and a Greenshank all flew by and, after enjoying our lunch by the river, we headed down the bay.  East Chevington produced lots of Knot, Dunlin, Ruff, Lapwing, Curlew, Golden Plover, Pintail, Goldeneye, Tufted Duck, Pochard, Gadwall, Mallard, Teal and Wigeon and our next stop was Cresswell.  Along the hedge leading down to the hide there were at least 8 Goldcrests, and from the hide there was another nice wader roost.  As well as the species we’d already seen at East Chevington there was a single Black-tailed Godwit, plenty of Turnstone and 2 Purple Sandpipers.  As the sun began falling towards the horizon, we settled into position to search for Otters.  Flocks of Pink-footed Geese filled the sky to the north and a Daubenton’s Bat moved back and forth over the water. All of the signs were there; ducks, Coots and Swans moving en masse from one spot to another, nervously moving back before reversing direction again and, successive groups of birds across the water exploding into the air in a state of panic.  The only thing that didn’t happen, was the Otter coming out into view!  Still, with a success rate of 75% on Otter Safaris since mid-April, we’re always optimistic whenever we go in search of them.

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2 Comments for this entry

  • Mike Boyes

    Another great outing with Martin, visiting lots of sites in one afternoon. For Maggie and I this enabled us to consolidate some of the knowledge we had gained with Martin two days earlier. And we also saw several more species new to us or that we had rarely seen before. Great company and good food added to the enjoyment of the day. If we had visited any of these sites on our own we would have failed to see or identify many of the species that we actually saw that day. Thank you, Martin.

  • martin

    Hi Mike and Maggie

    Thank you again for your kind words. We’re looking forward to seeing some of your pictures 🙂

    best wishes
    martin

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