Friday, 31 December 2010

Thursday, 30 December 2010


Report. Angela Tonry. 30th December 2010

My listing was a little sporadic today, so mainly consists of the highlights! Do let T know if I have missed anything guys. We met up with Andy Carey this morning at Manoa, and then Andy Carey, Mark Whittaker & Roger Lane in the afternoon at Par, where it was bitterly cold :-

Garden this morning (Boscoppa): Chaffinch 8, Blue Tit 3, Blackcap 1 F, Blackbird 8, Starling 11, Woodpigeon 7, Robin 2, House Sparrow 7, Magpie 2, Carrion Crow 2, Herring Gull 9, Great Tit 2, Coal Tit 1, Redwing 5, Wren 1, Collared Dove 2, Dunnock 1, Jay 1, Songthrush 1, Pied Wagtail 1, Bullfinch 1 M.

Manoa Valley (Sewage Works): Large flock of Redwing seen sporadically (60-100 in numbers), Wren 4, Chaffinch 6, Robin 2, Pied Wagtail 8 (plus flock of Wagtails c25), Grey Wagtail 3, Meadow Pipit 1, Buzzard 1, Teal 1 F on the river, Dipper 3, Little Egret 1, Goldfinch 9, Blue Tit 3, Long Tailed Tit 6, House Sparrow 1 F, Goldcrest 2, large flock of Carrion Crow, large flock of Herring Gulls.

Par Beach Pool: One of the male Tufted Ducks on the pool today has what looks like a postman’s red elastic band around its neck – Mark or Andy may have an image of this. The colour ringed Coot was still there today along with Tufted Duck 6, Teal 4, Bar Headed Goose 4 (juv), Adult female Goldeneye 1, Bittern 1 (seen this morning A Carey & late afternoon M Whittaker), 21 Curlew over (late afternoon M Whittaker).

Par Bay: Eider 6, Brent Goose 3 (along the surf and showing well), Great Crested Grebe 6, Turnstone 2, Stonechat 1, Rock Pipit 4, Linnet 20+, Goosander 9 (came in from the bay, circled and headed out over the harbour), Gannet 12, Great Black Backed Gull 3, Lesser Black Backed Gull 1 (and 5 small waders in flight, but unidentified).

Thanks for the report Angie.
Cannot add much to that. During my little wander down by the river I saw 4 Stonechat and a large flock of Chaffinch.

Coot on the Sea.

Report. R.Lane. 30th December 2010

Good to see you again today(Thurs). I counted c.70 Coots again at Par Pool (and saw the ringed one that Nigel photographed yesterday, pretty obvious once you know it's there! ). Having been a bird-ringer once (eons ago!) I know how important it is to have such accurate information as Nigel's, especially in colour ringing schemes (Darvic rings). Before we leave the subject of Coots, I think Ian's record of 4 x Coot ON THE SEA (off Spit?) is noteworthy, although it was several weeks back when the Pool first froze (approx 1st-half Dec.'10) If I had not seen 2 x Coot on the sea (off Par Harbour) many years ago, under similar frozen conditions, I would have thought it unique, but presumably it happens rarely, when fresh water is frozen up.

Interesting observation again by Ian. Keeping you and your old records on your toes Roger.
Nice snippits.

Dipper and Goosander.

Photographs and report. Andrew Carey.

1 shot of the Dipper from Manoa and one of seven of the nine flyover goosander from Par Beach. Good to see you both today, and a happy new year to you both.

Nice shots of the Dipper and Gossander in flight .

Wednesday, 29 December 2010

Ringed Coot.

Photograph. Nigel Climpson

Hi Trevor
There is a colour ringed Coot at PBP. Left leg: Green over green. Right leg: Pink over metal.
I have attached a photograph taken yesterday.
I contacted the ringer and passed on the details.
He responded with the following. The bird (GR25118) was ringed 26 days ago at Southport Marine Lake, Lancashire and thus has travelled 384km. The project has been running for one year, and some 900 Coots have been ringed. This is so far the most distant sighting.
I have also attached for your info some details of the project that he sent.
The bird was still present (with some 50 others) this afternoon.

All very interesting
Thanks for the information Nigel.
Now the strange thing is ...I was looking on the guys blog this evening and left him a comment so I was half expecting a report from you.
We do have a large number of Coots on the Pool at the moment so maybe we all better start having a second look at them.
Well done finding it and getting the history.
The guys blog said he thought they may be heading to France.
Interesting stuff indeed.

Dipper with the *Goggles On*

Thanks to John Rance for supplying the technical details about the white eyes and also using the goggles on expression. Very apt.

Barnacle Geese at PBP.

Barnacle Goose .....Branta leucopsis
Photographed yesterday evening close to dusk at Par Beach Pool.

Identification Please.

Photograph. Andy Cross
Andy took the photograph early on in the year and wishes to know what it is.
I am going along with Stonechat.

Tuesday, 28 December 2010

The Five Bar-Headed Geese.

Angie, Andrew and myself and maybe others have photographed the five Bar -headed Geese on Par Beach Pool today.
Who is going to make it six?

Manoa and Par.

Report Angela Tonry. 28th December 2010

We had a great day today & it was lovely to see Andy & Roger. It was not so great to see the mass orgy of copulating flies at Manoa when we arrived there at 11.45am where the sun was shining, but I know they are the reason the birds do so well there so I bit the bullet and endured it!
Roger said that as it was so much warmer there had probably been a hatch.
There were swarms of little black flies in the air around the trees and what seemed like millions of them “hooked up” and “loved up” and dropping on everything, including us. I’m still itching for some reason!

My lists for the day: In the garden this morning (Boscoppa):
Moorhen 1, Blackbird 12, Starling 18, Coal Tit 2, Blue Tit 2, Chaffinch 4, Wren 1, Robin 1, Collared Dove 2, Woodpigeon 8, Herring Gull 6, Great Tit 2, Blackcap 2 M&F, Dunnock 2, Redwing 3, House Sparrow 9, Magpie 2, Carrion Crow 3, Bullfinch 1 M, Goldfinch 2, Jay 1, Songthrush 1, Greenfinch 1, Goldcrest 1 (a little up stream).

Manoa Valley (St Austell Sewage Works) where we were joined by Andy Carey: Chiffchaff 1, Grey Wagtail 3, Carrion Crow c30, Robin 2, Pied Wagtail 5 & then a flock was seen c30, Meadow Pipit 2, Blue Tit 3, Chaffinch 5, Dunnock 3, Great Tit 1, Jackdaw 2, Long Tailed Tits 8, Goldcrest 2, Wren 3, Woodpigeon 6, Great Spotted Woodpecker 1, Dipper 1, Blackbird 3, Magpie 2, Jay 1, Redwing c20, Songthrush 1, Buzzard 1 as well as lots of Herring Gulls & Black Headed Gulls.

Par Beach Pool this afternoon (no time to count numbers of everything so here are the highlights!): Bar Headed Goose 5, Shelduck 1 (nice patch tick Trevor!), Barnacle Goose 2 (another nice patch tick Trevor!), Tufted Duck 6, Wigeon 2, Finch Flock c25, Heron 1, Goldcrest 2. Also seen this morning by Andy Carey was Bittern 1 and “a single Redshank did a couple of laps of the pool, but didn’t land”.
Thanks to Andy for the use of his lens again and generous guidance. I’m still trawling through my pics! Angie

Yes it certainly was a good day. Pity the Dipper remained upstream.
The five Bar-headed Goose were definitely a bonus as was the Shelduck and the Barnacle Geese.

Reportfrom Spit Beach

Report. Marilyn Edyvean. 28th December 2010

Hello Trevor

Have been to Spit today 12.30 until 14.00.
Saw 40 species of birds altogether, highlights were:

2 Great Northern Diver
5 Great Crested Grebe
2 Little Grebe
1 Shelduck
1f Greater Scaup
2m + 6f Eider
11 Grey Plover
8 Bar-tailed Godwit
2 Curlew11 Knot
13 Ringed Plover
1 Redshank31 Dunlin
1 Purple Sandpiper
3 Brent Geese - scoped from Harbour wall on Polkerris side of Par Beach
Little Egret
2 Grey Heron
20+ Redwing

Thank you for an excellent report from Spit Beach ..Marilyn
You most certainly have had a good day.

Manoa Valley

Photographs . Andrew Carey

Hi Trevor

Two of a goldcrest and one of a grey wagtail at the Manoa Valley.

Great shots Andrew of a tricky birds in dense foliage.
You have done well to get a clear shot.

Monday, 27 December 2010

Manoa Valley Dipper.

Dipper .....Cinclus cinclus
I photographed the Dipper a few days before Christmas. Two flew just over my head and then broke off and flew in opposite directions..upstream and downstream. It was my first view of a Dipper flying above a foot over the water. I feel certain there was at least three Dippers in the small stretch of water I patrolled.
A strange fact I have noticed photographing the Dipper ....10% of my photographs show the Dipper with white eyes. Naturally it is when they are blinking but it does look kinda strange.

Sunday, 26 December 2010

Two Bitterns at Par Beach Pool

Report. Nigel Climpson. 26th December 2010

"I can personally confirm that there were two Bitterns present on PBP on Christmas Day at about 3-4 pm. They were showing well, walking on the ice and even had an argument whereupon one lew to the back of the main pool and remained in full view. There were a number of observers and Richard Ford has an image on his camera of the two together.

Happy New Year to you and Angie"

Thanks for the report Nigel. It does confirm what Ian thought.
A Happy New Year to you and your wife.

Mixed Bag

Report. R.Lane. 26th December 2010

"Greetings of the Season to one and all ! Congratulations to Andy on the Bittern and Bar-Headed Geese photo's this morning, what a Xmas present ! I can assure you I never saw either of them today. But at c.3.30pm my driver (!) stopped by Par Pool so that I could get a '2nd-hand' resume of the day's lesser avian fauna for a totally reliable source, one IAN PROFIT, still 'scoping the pool at dusk. All these records are HIS, and probably include more, that he, or I, forgot !
At Par Pool: at least 1 x Bittern (c.3.15pm), Ian now believes there are 2 x Bitterns present from his personal observation (and also has a Bittern tick from his house window !). Lesser items include sundry duck, notably c.50 Wigeon, 1 x Goldeneye (male), also Tufted Duck and possibly Pochard (?).(I.P.)
In Par Bay this morning, as well as the G.C.Grebe flock, were: 4 x Eider Duck, 2 x G.N.Diver and 1 x RED THROATED DIVER (I.P.).
At Spit beach (this p.m.apparently) were NINE x Purple Sandpipers and a selection of recent waders (but no Grey Plover seen). In the Harbour were a few waders including 1 x Sanderling, and also the male Scaup was still present (I.P.). There may have been more mentioned which I forget. Whatever, Ian had a good Boxing Day, as did Andy! The variety of birds around Par on this one day was bigger than the six months of summer altogether!"

Thanks to Roger and of course Ian.
The cold spell has certainly livened up the Baywatch Sites.
I hope the bird figures continue into the new year.....not the cold spell though.

Bittern and Bar-Headed Geese.

Report and Photographs Andrew Carey. Christmas Day 2010
Hello Trevor, I trust you and Angie had a lovely Christmas Day and that you are well and truly sozzled by now. However, in the interests of those who were on parade this morning (lots of lovely sunshine, too much ice) down at Par Beach Pool, I thought I'd let you know that between 10 and 11.30am there were 4 bar headed geese (this summers brood I suspect, looked like first winter birds to me.) and that the bittern showed really well from just before 11am until about 11.30, when it did a big lap and dropped down into the reed bed far right.

It came to front of the island about 10.50, then disappeared until just before 11.00 when if flopped into the reed bed at the back (north side of the pool) where it stayed relatively still for about 15 minutes, when it eventually travelled to the left, and came out on the ice, giving some cracking views.

I attach 3 bittern pics, and a pic of the 4 bar headed geese. Merry xmas one and all!!
Great shots of the Bittern Andrew.
The Bar-headed Geese photograph must be a pictorial record for PBP at least.
A lovely bunch of stocking fillers.....well done.

Thursday, 23 December 2010


The St Austell Baywatch Blog would like to wish all readers old and new a very Happy Christmas and a prosperous New Year.

Thank you all for your support.

Christmas Robin

Took this photo this morning very apt for Christmas i thought so also i would like to say happy Christmas to you all andy cross
Photograph Andy Cross.
Nice topical photograph Andy.
Hope you also have a happy Christmas .

Wednesday, 22 December 2010

Calling the Experts

Report and Photograph. M. Whittaker. 22nd December 2010
Manoa Valley (am)
Goldcrest (20+), Flock of (20+) Goldfinch, Grey Wagtail (1), 2 flocks of (12+) Long Tailed Tits, 30+ Redwing over, 4 Fieldfare over, Male Bullfinch (1) and a very pretty Firecrest who was feeding by the metal gate at the end of the lane as you drive in and park on the left.
Spit Beach
In the harbour : Bar Tailed Godwit (4), Ringed Plover (8), Dunlin (34), Redshank (3), Little Grebe (3) and after sending my photo to a few people it would appear the reported "Scaup" in the harbour is indeed a scaup although i'm just waiting to hear back from Roger. Will send you the picture and see what other people think.
Off the beach :
3 Eider (2 female and immature male)
Par Beach Pool
Wigeon (18), Teal (39), Male Shoveler (1) and also reported male Goldeneye on the river. Cant remember the chaps name. The Bittern made a appearance again this afternoon at 3:40pm. Just packed the camera up and ready to go home then from the right out it came right across the pool before dropping down in behind the trees just behind the caravans just to the right. Went round for a look but no sign.
A very impressive list Mark. The only notable absentee is the Dipper at Manoa Valley. Did you try for it?

Canon Equipment

Equipment used Andrew Carey

In response to the request for information, I use Canon kit, as follows:

Canon 1D mk111 body

Canon 600 F4L
Canon 300 F2.8L
Canon 100-400 F4-F5.6L
Canon 24-70 F2.8L
Canon 16.24 F2.8L
Canon 1.4 and 2x extenders
Sigma 105 F2.8 macro

Canon 580EX Flash

Gitzo 1548 mk2 Tripod
Wimberely Mk1 head

That is a very impressive list Andrew. Any chance of a swap...Nikon plus my Alfa Romeo LOL.

Tuesday, 21 December 2010

Equipment Used.

"I have been logging on to the St Austell  Baywatch site for some time and greatly enjoy the content and also the fantastic photos - could anyone tell me what cameras are being used for the results are quite brilliant thanks"  

Stuart Hunkin

Hi Stuart..

Myself and Mark Whittaker  use the same combination of camera and lens. Nikon D300 with a Sigma 150-500 mm zoom lens.

Angie also uses the same Sigma lens attached to a Canon 450D

Andrew uses top Canon equipment. Maybe he will let us know what lenses and camera model he uses.

All the others I do not know...if they wish to elaborate all  well and good.

Bittern Again.

Report Mark Whittaker. 21st December 2010

"Just after Andrew left at around 4:30pm the Bittern finally showed itself. It came out right at the very back right of the pool above the tree line went left about 10 metres then dropped down again. Brief view but certainly a Bittern."

Thank you for the report Mark.

Just reward for sticking it out.

Shortest Day.

Report R.Lane. 21st December 2010

"It may have been the shortest day, following the coldest night, but there was no shortage of bird-watchers, or birds, at Par today. Only Angie was absent, but someone has to work, to keep the men birding!

Met Andrew and Ollie at St.Andrews Pond, where there was only some 6 Teal and the female Goosander. We moved on to Par Pool where we met Trevor, Mark and John watching a variety of birds on the mostly re-frozen water (virtually ice-free yesterday). Most were there to see John Rance's pintail of yesterday, but no luck today, even when John himself turned up. Wildfowl of note that were present included: 50+, Teal; 2 x Shoveler; 1 x Gadwall; 5 x Tufted D. and 5 x Pochard. There was also a possible sighting of a Scaup in Par Harbour (this morning). Sundries included c.70 Coot, on the water. Many Moorhen seem to have left the water to feed on grassland wherever they can. Snipe were quite abundant. No unusual Geese were present.Mark managed to see 4 x Water Rails around the back of the Pool, and heard 2 or 3 more ! The bittern did not turn up, while I was there.
Moving up to the western car-park with Trevor, we saw 10+, G.C.Grebes (toward Polkerris), 2 x G.N.Divers (far out in the Bay) and 2 x fem. Eider Duck just off the harbour wall (dark females), a patch tick for Trevor I believe. Nearly forgot, someone (Ollie?) went out to Spit (this morning?) and saw most of the regular waders, also several Grey Plover (plus the possible Scaup in the inner harbour.)
  This afternoon I went home before it froze again (3.30pm) and indeed, now at 5pm the outside below zero AGAIN. Wonder if anything else turned up at the Pool !"

Thank you for the report Roger.

Glad I caught up with the Eider Ducks at long last.

Lunar Eclipse


"I don't know if you were aware that there was to be a total lunar eclipse this morning. This was the first lunar eclipse since 1638 when it has occurred on the winter solstice, and this will not be repeated for another 83-84 years! It was visible in the sky over St Austell, with totality at about 7.41am. I attach a photo."

Report and Photograph A.Carey

O blow....looks like I will have to wait for the next one.

Monday, 20 December 2010


Report and Photograph. Andy Cross

"Please tell me if this a bar tailed godwit or a black tailed godwit there were five on the shore line at par beach i could only get this one due to a dog come running over and they flew off towards spit beach "

Thank you for the report and photograph Andy.
Over to the experts.....cast your vote.

Redwings on Football Pitch

Report. R.Lane. 20th December 2010

"Only a brief visit to Par today. Surprisingly the female Goosander was back on St.Andrew's Pond, at least she characteristically stayed in the centre of the pool, and had the same sort of 'lop-sided' look as the earlier female. However this may be due to preening, otherwise she may be slightly injured.
On the way down to Par Pool I counted 15+ roadside Blackbirds happy to make a living from the softened soil, due to the basic thaw. Also there were 30+ Redwings on Par football pitch.
Down at the Pool there was Andrew, set up in readiness for any sight of the Bittern or whatever. Otherwise very little on the Pool except Coots galore: 65+ (AMC). I continued up to the western car-park overlooking the Bay but there seemed to be little of note except a large group of 12+, G.C.Grebes over toward Polkerris (there may well be even more after this spell of cold weather, 20+ is not unknown). Bye to Andy, maintaining his vigil ! Longest night and shortest day tomorrow, or today"

Thank you for the report Roger.


Report. A.Carey 20th December 2010

"Not surprisingly I went back to the pool to look for the Bittern. I was there from 10 till 11.15am with no sign. I met Mark, who spotted the kingfisher fly in at about 11 o'clock, and it perched on a gorse bush in front of the caravans in bright sunshine, and was still there when I left. There were 3 widgeon and the usual 4 tufties.

I returned at about 2.40, and being an optimist set the camera up. No sign of the bittern! At this point there was a heron in the reedbed to the right, the one from which the bittern emerged last night to do it's final lap, but even that flew off. Then at 4.05 the heron returned to the same reedbed and flushed the bittern, which hopped to the right some 20 yards, and was not seen again by me. With the poor light, I left at 4.25pm."

Thanks for the report Andrew.
Did either of you manage to get a photograph of the Kingfisher?

Sunday, 19 December 2010

Goosander & Bittern

Photographs and report. Andrew Carey. 19th December 2010

" Well, a nice bit of pre-Christmas excitement down at Par Beach Pool this afternoon, after a rather quiet week in general. Apart from all the usual subjects, there were Common and Ring Billed Gulls, (1 of each) a male Goosander flying over and of course the Bittern, plus a number of snipe buzzing around. I'm sending you 2 record shots of the bittern and 1 of the goosander."
Thanks for the report and photographs Andrew.
You have done well to capture them both in flight.

Bittern. A.Carey

Bittern &Ring-Billed Gull at Par.

Report. R.Lane . 19th December 2010

" There was very little on the half-frozen Par Pool at 2pm today, apparently just 4 x Tufted Ducks and a few Snipe. Driving on to overlook the Bay there was little else to be seen except 1 x G.C.Grebe (out of 10+ possibles !) and 1 x Common Eider Duck (female).
Driving out of Par c.2.30pm I stopped to count the coot feeding at the roadside bank and saw 70+ (my highest total ever at Par). However, Andrew came along at that time and told me he had counted 85 in the morning ! Must be a record.
It was very fortunate Andrew turned up when he did, since I parked up to scan the Pool with him and after a while, having seen only the Tufted Duck and 2 x Gadwall (a pair) plus several Snipe, a large brown bird flew from the rear of the reeds to the front, and stood motionless ! Got the 'scope onto it, to see a BITTERN standing in the late sunlight. It then crept off out of sight into the reeds, before Andrew could set up his camera ! However, patience paid off and as I left he shouted that he had taken a flight picture of the Bittern ! Again I returned, to see the picture and, while I was scanning the Gulls on the ice, in a flock of B.H.Gulls were 1 x Comm.Gull and 1 x RING-BILLED GULL, a full adult, with the classic bill pattern, which unfortunately flew soon after I found it. My first at Par for over 5 years !
Although a Bittern may be harder to locate, there is no easy way of identifying a R.B.Gull, good job it was a full adult ! Trevor and Angie turned up later dressed like Arctic explorers (well it was near Zero degrees by then !), but I believe too late for the Bittern (or Gull). Better luck next time guys !"

Thanks for the report Roger.

After we got the call from Andrew we hurried down to the Pool. I did not fancy our chances of seeing the Bittern but you never is a funny old game.

Not long after you left..Andrew heard it booming and a short while later we were treated to it flying a lap of the Pool. It then went out of sight again into the reeds. So another patch tick for me.

Now unfortunately we were too late for the Ring=Billed Gull which would have provided us both with a life tick.....It would have been 200 up for Angie.

During our brief visit also seen.... 4x Snipe. 20 x Curlew (over) and 1x Goosander.... which did one more lap of the Pool than the Bittern did.

Thursday, 16 December 2010

Red Admiral

Butterfly report. R. Lane. 16th December 2010

" Despite the frost the prolonged morning sun, brought out an unidentified butterfly here near Bethel, on Tues.13thDec. but was probably "disturbed from hibernation" (chap working on garden shed). However, it put the idea in my mind and next day, Thurs14thDec., I drove out to Trenarren and was rewarded by a fine, large, female RED ADMIRAL butterfly, flying in the 100% sunshine, even after the frost. Latest by a month, in a temp. of only 7degsC ! (On patch)
Incidentally, a Peacock butterfly was seen today, Ian Benallick flying around serpentine rocks on the Lizard, in 100% sun and a temp of 8degsC (out-of-bounds). Last ones I reckon !"

Thanks for the report Roger.

Well done with the late Red Admiral.

Tuesday, 14 December 2010

Waxwing (Out of Bounds)

Waxwing .....Bombycilla garrulus
Photographed at Wadebridge . Sunday 12th December 2010

Monday, 13 December 2010


Photograph. A. Carey.
Thanks for the photograph Andrew. Sorry I missed it last time.

Spit Beach

Report. Marilyn Edyvean. 12th December 2010

"Just thought I would let you know what birds I have seen at Spit Beach this morning at 9.30 to 11am. 11 female Goosander which were close to the shore and they were heading towards Par. 4f and 1m Eider Duck, 5 Purple Sandpiper (it was highish tide and they were on rocks towards Carlyon Bay), 1 Knot, 7 Grey Plover, 6 Bar-tailed Godwit, 1 Redshank, 1 Great Northern Diver, 1 Black-throated Diver, 7 Dunlin and a Kingfisher sitting on a wall in the harbour. Hope this is of use for your records."

Thank you for your first detailed report Marilyn.

Welcome to the Blog .
I am sure reports from Spit (as indeed elsewhere) will be welcomed by the least active of the Blog readers.
Maybe Roger can tell us if the Goosander number is high for the Baywatch area.

Saturday, 11 December 2010

Divers and Grebes

Report. R.Lane. 11th December 2010

"A late afternoon dash into the gloom revealed the following: firstly to Porthpean which appeared empty AGAIN. Still no Fulmars seen, over a month late in returning to breeding cliffs.
Then a mile east to Charlestown, where I did see c.4 x G.N.Divers and c.2 x B.T.Divers but little else except a female COMM.EIDER DUCK, very unusual in the west of St.Austell Bay.
Another mile west to Carlyon Bay upper cliff car-park where I saw at least 2 x B.T.Divers but best of all , in the distant gloom (toward Spit Beach) were the 5 x SLAVONIAN GREBES (reported by I.P. yesterday), and also a POSSIBLE R.N.Grebe.
Decided to make a quick trip to St.Andrews Pond and saw the 'long-staying' fem.Goosander with only 2 x Tufted Duck. On to Par Pool toward dusk, where I met Andrew who pointed out the was a great lack of ducks (apart from mallards!). Presumably they have left for better feeding grounds now the temp. is higher. While there, we did see a fair number of Starlings come in to roost (c.5000+). Also two flights of Curlew, totalling c.20 birds with 2 slightly smaller waders with them, possibly Bar T.Godwits which roost on the Harb.Wall with them."

Thanks for the report Roger.

I visited St Andrews at 1100hrs and saw the Goosander and Tufties on the Pool.
Around the swamp area adjacent to the *H.R.Cafe* I caught sight of a Water Rail and I did manage to get a very poor photograph of it as it dashed through the vegetation.
Also seen: Marsh Tit x5 (3 on the table together), Song Thrush x2, Wren x2, Coal Tit x3, plus the usual Chaffinch, Blue and Great Tit, Dunnock, Robin and Corvids.

At Par Beach.
Turnstones x 24, Oystercatcher x 7, Wren x 1, Stonechat x3 , a flock of Goldfinches C 12.

A LB Gull was on the PBP ice.

Mistle Thrush

Report. Michelle O'Shea. 11th December 2010

"There hasn’t been anything to report from my little corner for a long time.Blackcap (m) came back on Wednesday , haven’t seen the f yet. MISTLE thrush is back opposite the Ship. I saw it yesterday and the day before, in the afternoons. Hope you’re keeping well,"

Thank you for the report Michelle.
I am glad the Mistle Thrush has returned to its old haunt.. I will be keeping a lookout from now on.
We have had both the Blackcaps in the garden for the last few days...but still no visible sign of the Goldcrest and Firecrest even though Angie has heard them both.

In Flight.

Report and photographs A.Carey

Hi Trevor, little to report today, the goosander and 2 tufties still on St Andrews, but most ducks gone from Par Beach Pool. However, a grey wagtail there late afternoon.

A Kestrel and a Buzzard on different poles on the Menabilly road before you get to Tregaminion, photos attached and in separate emails, the buzzard and a photo of the Bar Headed goose in flight, taken earlier in the week.

Thanks for the report and photographs Andy.
Especially like the the Goose in flight.

Friday, 10 December 2010

Waxwings Getting Closer

Report. John Rance. 10th December 2010

"I suspect a lot of these sightings may be duplicates of others already sent in today, but just for posterity;

On the Pool 9.30ish: Amongst others, ‘the’ Common Gull, BH and Herring Gulls, Coot, Moorhen, Mallard, Teal, Gadwall, Shoveler,Tufted Duck, Snipe, at least 2 Water Rail

Also ‘the’ pair of Goldeneye in the river near the slipway.

I wonder who will have the first patch Waxwing of the winter? I gather there were some in Truro yesterday- Tesco’s at Holmbush gets my bet!"

Thanks for the report John.
If anyone sees a Waxwing around the Baywatch area please let Angie or myself know.
I hope you are correct John. Tesco's is only a stones throw from me and it would be another Life Tick for both of us.

A Mixed Bag

Report. R.Lane. 10th December 2010

"A touch of the sameness about today's report. Despite meeting Andrew, Mark and Ian at the Pool this afternoon, none of us had been far out within the patch. Ian had probably the best tally, most of the goodies from his house window ! However, here's what I can remember: at St.Andrews Pond the Goosander was still present, with the pair of Tufted Ducks still. The shoveler had apparently flown off earlier this morning but the regular Comm.Gull was still present.
At Par Pool duck were down in number (due to 5degsC rise in temp ?). However those seen included 10+ Teal; 2 x Gadwall (fems) and the pair of Goldeneye. Some 24 x Curlew overflew the Pool at dusk, and 6,000+ went to roost well east of the Pool.
Ian had scanned Par Bay from his house earlier and saw at least 7 x GCGrebes and (I believe) 5 x Slavonian Grebes, also 5 x Comm.Eider Duck (4 fems and an imm, male.). Not bad from a house window !
Also a Green Woodpecker later when out. Several Green W' Peckers have been seen lately Are they moving closer to the coast to feed in softer ground I wonder? Sorry for those I've forgotten, and thanks to Andrew for correcting my "2 x Brent Geese" yesterday, which were indeed both Barnacle Geese !"

Thanks for the report Roger.

Things are hotting up now and a lot of reports are coming in. Thanks to everyone.

Sundown. Imerys Par.

Thursday, 9 December 2010

Black Redstart.

Report. R. Lane. 9th December 2010

"A mixed Bag today. Visited Porthpean first and saw only the Black Redstart (that Ian saw 2 days ago). Otherwise the Bay seemed empty, even the Comm.Scoter flock was absent, and there were still no Fulmars, apparently. Just as I was leaving 3 x Comm.Scoter (new?) did fly in from the east. Drove on to Charlestown where I did slightly better with 2+, G.N.Divers and a small flock of 7 x B.T.Divers.
Then on to St.Andrews Pond where only a pair of Tufted Duck, kept the Goosander company, although there were a few Teal at the margins, also the 'regular' Comm.Gull.
On to Par Beach Pool where I met Andrew. The Pool was still 90% frozen with less duck than recently (air temp. 5degsC higher). The teal and gadwall seemed to have moved on, but there were 3 or 4 Tufted Duck and the pair of Goldeneye were back from the Par River and sleeping in the ice free leads.
There were a surprising amount of geese, and apparently the Bar-headed goose had been present earlier, also 2 x Brent Geese. Towards dusk 5,000+ Starlings came in to roost, and c.20 x Curlew flew in in two close flocks."

Thanks for the report Roger.

St Austell Sewage Works and the Manoa Valley.

Report. T.R.Moore. 9th December 2010.

Visited the Manoa Valley at 1400hrs.

1x Dipper, 6x Grey Wagtails, 1x Pied Wagtail, 3x Robins, 2x Dunnocks, 2 x Long-tailed Tit, 2x Blue Tit, 1x Buzzard, 1x Wren, 2x Goldcrests and probably double figure Chiffchaff. Also seen were Wood Pigeons, Corvids and Gulls.

The main quarry on the visit list was the Dipper who obliged once again.
Grey Wagtails were split between the Sewage car park (3) and the other (3) on the river.
The Buzzard was causing havoc with the small birds within the works area. As much as I tried I could not get a good photograph....distance too far , or, too much foliage between us.
Again the Chiffchaff were far too active in the trees to get a worthwhile photograph.
The Dipper I managed to get reasonably close to... also the Wagtails produced something that probably will see the light of day on a quiet week.

Wednesday, 8 December 2010

Patch Collation

Report. R.Lane. 8th December 2010

"Just a collation of what was around today on the patch, mostly from Ian Profit, Andrew Carey, myself and others:
Waterfowl were abundant, with many Teal and the fem. Goosander, still at St.Andrews Pond; while at Par Pool (90% frozen) was a small collection of : 30+, Teal; 10+, Gadwall; 5 x Tufted Duck and 9 x Pochard. Yesterday's male Goldeneye had moved to Par River Estuary together with a female Goldeneye (I.P.). In Par Bay were 4 x Eiders, the females being joined by an immature male(I.P)
Waders included 1 x Dunlin and 2 x Knot landing on the ice of Par Pool temporarily ! Ian had some good sightings west of Spit Beach with at least 3 x Bar.T.Godwits; 17 x KNOT and 1 x PURPLE SAND-PIPER. (Also a Blk.Redstart at Porthpean yesterday). All seen by Ian. 12+, Curlew flew over the Pool to roost on Par Harb. Wall toward dusk (as last evening)
Other species around included 10+, Lapwing at Pontsmill Valley together with Redwings and a few Fieldfares. Also 10+ Lapwing adjacent to the Gribben Road and small flocks flying South, as yesterday. Doubtless I missed a few, I reckon Andrew (A.C.) had the best sighting of the day, but it was "out-of-bounds"!

Thanks for the reports Roger and all the others.

I had a shortish visit to St Andrews Pool at 1015hrs.
I can confirm all that Andrew reported yesterday were still on the Pool.1 x Goosander, 1 x Common Gull, 1x Tufted Duck.
The * Cafe* : 2x Marsh Tits, 3 x Great Tits, 2 x Blue Tits, 1 x Dunnock, I x Robin plus numerous Chaffinch and Blackbirds.

At PBP where I was joined by Andrew ...I saw smaller amounts of most of those reported and also the lone
Dunlin..... We wondered at the time what had happened to the Goldeneye.

I never got to look at the Bay as I ran out of time.

I am not sure what Andrew's best sighting of the day was....but I reckon his worst was when he saw me !

Tuesday, 7 December 2010

Common Gull and Goosander at St Andrews Pool

"Hi Trevor, attached a picture of the goosander on St Andrew's Pool today (07/12/2010). I'm also attaching to a separate email a common gull pic also from St Andrew's Pool today.

The Goldeneye was still at Par Beach Pool, but the starling roost was very small tonight, and there were no curlews either."
Photographs and report. A. Carey
Thanks for the photographs and report Andrew.
A pair of lovely have done well.


Out of Bounds Report.Yesterday. R. Lane

"Away Day to the Truro River: On the afternoon, main road drive to Truro, little was seen other than the occasional Redwing and at least one Fieldfare. On the high ground before Twewithen however, there were many Lapwings standing in frosty fields, awaiting a thaw. The sensible ones had flown to the fields thawed by the weak sun ! Probably several hundred.
On reaching the Truro River the high tide were driving the waders to their roosting area (opposite Sunny-corner), together with a few ducks, but the sun was setting and the light poor. However,it was possible to make out flocks waders and duck. The numbers are probably all under-estimates, but they included:- c.20 x Shelduck; 20+,Teal; 100+, Dunlin; 30+, Blk.Tailed Godwits with the odd Redshank and Greenshank. No doubt there were other oddments. The best came in to roost on a wooden boat on the Sunny-corner side, just before we left: an overwintering Common Sandpiper, hovered and piped around the boats, annoyed at our proximity ! " No doubt we missed as much again !"

Thanks for the report Roger.
You certainly had a good bird count.

Monday, 6 December 2010

Goldeneye at Par

"Hi Trevor, just to let you know there was a goldeneye on the pool today, still there at dusk. I attach a record shot that also shows widgeon and teal."  

Photograph and report. A. Carey

Thanks for the photograph and report Andrew. It is doubtful if I will be going tomorrow. 

Sunday, 5 December 2010


Report. R.Lane. 5th December 2010

" Good to see you today, in your new Davy Crockett hats ! We had only been out along the Gribben Road and seen the odd finch flock, redwing and pheasant. While watching pheasants however, a flock of 25+ Lapwings came from the north and landed in a nearby field. Later on, out at Menabilly Barton car-park a flock of 15+, ( but these may have been part of the same flock) also flew south without landing. Max.thus 25+"

Thanks for the report Roger.

It got really cold after an hour or so and I was glad I had the *Davy* with me.

I would have liked to have seen the Lapwings.  They are an attractive bird and I want to get a good closeup photograph of one.

Nice to see all the old hands on the deck today..namely: Roger, Mark, Andrew and Chris.

The group count was: Snipe x 3, Oystercatchers over x 5 , Teal x 26, Gadwall x4 (1m 3F), Grey Heron x 2, Robin x 1, Blackbird x 3, Canada Goose x 19, Mute Swan x 16, Pied Wagtail x 5, Water Rail (heard), Coots x 57, Dunnock x 2, Mallard, B.H.Gulls, Herring Gulls, Moorhen and  Chaffinch, were not counted.

The Starling roost was estimated at C10000.

Saturday, 4 December 2010


Photograph and report. M.Whittaker. 3rd December 2010
"Found some energy from somewhere and saw the following thingsOff Spit Beach :
Black Throated Diver (3), Great Northern Diver (5), Wigeon (11) and Female Eider (2)Harbour Wall : Shag (2), Cormorant (1), Dunlin (15), Oystercatcher (21), Bar Tailed Godwit (1) and Turnstone (9)
Par Harbour : Dunlin (8), Cormorant (1), Grey Heron (2), Ringed Plover (6), Great Northern Diver (1) and Little Grebe (3)
Par Beach Pool : Tufted Duck (5), Teal (17), Lesser Black Backed (2), Turnstone (2), Snipe (1) and Common Gull (2)
Theres also a report on Cornwall Birding saying there were no less than 27 Velvet Scoter at Porthpean. I wonder if Roger could shed any light on this as seems quite a large number."
Thanks for the report and photograph Mark.
Well done with the Eider Duck.
Hope you are feeling better.

Thursday, 2 December 2010


"Thought you might like a picture of some of the many thousands of starlings coming into roost at Par tonight."

Photograph. Andrew Carey .

Thanks for the colourful photograph Andrew.
Looks like the numbers are increasing daily.

Wednesday, 1 December 2010

Eider Ducks at Par Bay.

Report. R.Lane. 1st December 2010

"Difficult to collate Mon/Tues/Wed birds at Par (especially as I did not see them first,or at all in some cases!). Those that I know about and may still be around were found mainly by Sid Coles, Andrew Carey or Ian Profit, during the 3 days.On Par Pond (mostly 50% iced over) the following were included: 80+, Teal; c.10, Wigeon; c.12, Gadwall; 4 x Shoveler; 2 fem.Goosander (AC); 4,Tufted Duck and 2, Pochard.
Inshore at Par Bay were 3 , Comm.Eider Ducks and 10+, G.C.Grebes, all still present. Other species included: 2, Sanderling (IP); 2, Stonechats and POSSIBLY individual Swallow sightings !!! Plus the few wintering waders out of Par Harbour, including a Turnstone staying around Par Pool today, 1stDec.2010."

Thanks for the report Roger.

I was at the PBP at 1000 hrs today and saw most of those with a little help from Ian.
The suns reflection on the sea made scoping very difficult. I saw just 2x G.C.Grebe, 2x Cormorants and what probably was 2xEider Ducks but I could not be sure as the reflection made it impossible to see anything but the basic shape.

St Andrews proved fair at the *Cafe* with the same birds as the last visit. ....still no Wren.
Andrew and Ian saw Siskins and Ian heard a Water Rail.
A Buzzard was in the trees opposite also a Jay who I managed to get a long range photograph of.
The Marsh Tits were active and I am sure Andrew and myself have better shots than my last visit.
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