Sunday, August 2, 2015

1st August 2015

It's 3 a.m on a Saturday night / Sunday morning here in a typically sleepy Filey, and I've just returned from another joy of a day in my neighbourhood. Not that it's been particularly effort-filled; indeed, after staying up til 3 a.m last night in order to hit an assignment deadline and a subsequent late start, unusually it was a day without birding until well into the afternoon.

With heavy showers forecast (and arriving on cue), comrade Dan and I decided on a stakeout of our local wetlands - the Dams and East Lea - in the hope of grounded waders by mid-p.m.; not much joy except for Green and Common Sandpipers, a few Lapwings, Curlew and Snipe, but a very smart Hobby at East Lea more than compensated.

From there, back for a brief dinner and then onto the Brigg. A mild and pleasant evening saw us lugging down the required gear for an attempt at storm-petreling after dark, but not before a brief and relaxed sea-watch - which, with effectively nothing on the move, still provided a close-in Bonxie on the sea, a particularly zealous Arctic Skua harrying Kitiwakes and a Little Egret lolloping south over the sea.

As dusk fell, we set up the nets and prepared the sound system in the hope of attracting our quarry towards the plateau at the base of the Brigg, by the sea-watching hide. Summer-plumage Knot and Turnstones, a beautiful sunset and patrolling Common Pipistrelles kept us company until darkness finally descended, and at 2308, success, despite often dazzlingly bright moonlight; another two birds buzzed the nets and subsequently disappeared, but it was mission accomplished with the first Stormy of the year trapped, ringed and released.

Carting the gear back up the slope, the path was littered with toads and Great Crested Newts, doing their nocturnal thing.

Just another day here in Filey, and yet, what a privilege.