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Monday, 2 January 2017

Year Ticking

Out with Pete Watson for the first birdwatch of the year and we decided on Teesside, called at Skinningrove first to year tick the long staying Eastern Black Redstart which showed very well again as did a pair of Stonechat near the car park also a few Fulmars on the cliffs, we then went to nearby Thorpe Kirton where we scoped three Tundra Bean Geese in a field near there. We headed up the coast to Teesside, the sea at Redcar was a bit rough so we didn’t see much although we found out later we were probably looking from the wrong spot, South Gare was very quiet so we soon headed over the river and round to Saltholme, a male and two female Scaup were showing on the East Lagoon and the reserve held a good selection of stuff including the large flock of Barnacle Geese, a showy Pintail from Phil Stead Hide and good views were had of the Long Eared Owl at the Haverton end. With the afternoon getting on we went off to search for other stuff although the earlier reported White Fronted Geese on Cowpen Marsh had disappeared but while scanning from Holme Fleet Pete got onto a Short Eared Owl flying around so that was a nice bonus, we then drove to the end of Zinc Works Road and walked out to Seaton Snook but with the sun sinking fast we had left it a bit late for the Twite and Snow Buntings and none were seen but our final year tick of the day was a smart Great Northern Diver in the channel, a pleasant start to the year with a respectable 65 species seen. 


and Eastern Black Redstart at Skinningrove

intial views of the Long Eared Owl looking into the sun

improved greatly when we moved round the corner

Black Swan in front of Phil Stead Hide

the Pintail was out in the middle at first

but then came closer

just terrible light

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