Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Martin garnered

The first long-distance spring migrant of the year = instant happiness
 
Plenty of Goldcrests are moving through at the moment
 
An early-ish mosey around Carr Naze, the Brigg and the surrounding area this morning in crisp, early spring sunshine was always going to be a pleasure, but if I could bump into the first trans-Saharan migrant of the year then it'd kick-start the long-awaited new season in style. Despite the biting northerly breeze, very happy to report that it surprisingly didn't take long, when out of the sun and in off the sea came the first Sand Martin - inspiring an involuntary sharp intake of breath, a quickening of the pulse, and a psychological corner turned.

 
A second followed about an hour later, in between a walk around the base of the Brigg, ostensibly for Scandinavian Rock Pipits (briefly successful, with one of two fleeting birds showing an emerging littoralis dress code). With time of year (and lack of foliage) in mind, the quiet hunt for a Firecrest goes on, although checking the increasing numbers of Goldcrests is hardly a trial; around 16 were in the Top Scrub and Church Ravine this morning, where five Chiffys flitted and intermittently sang before a snow and sleet storm provoked a sudden silence.

Chiffchaff, Church Ravine
 
A brief Scandinavian Rock Pipit on the Brigg