Sunday, 7 June 2015

Fairhaven Diver

I wrote about a twitch I went on to Fairhaven Lake back in February, to see the Red Throated Diver ( click here to see it ). At the bottom I had written I had found a Great Northern Diver. Well... turns out it wasn't a Great Northern. At first I had measured it to be just over 160mm range, which was in the right area for a GND.

However, once I had the final skull, it measured to be 120mm. The feathers had added an extra 40mm on! After some conversing with Ben Garrod and Paolo Viscardi, we concluded that this is a Black Throated Diver!!
The skull needed a bit more cleaning, so I scrubbed it and left it soaking in some hydro pero over night. This is before the cleaning to the end result.

I am really pleased with the final piece, it is definitely one of my favourite skulls in my collection now. I doubt I will find another one of these, so this to me is very valuable!

Red-necked Phalarope Twitch 7.6.15

I have college starting again tomorrow and I had nothing to do today. I decided to go to church and whilst I was there, I received two messages about a Phalarope which was at Newton Marsh. I didn't really think I would be able to go, but luckily my dad got back home from work for two. Within half an hour, I was in my motorbike leathers and we headed off to look for Newton Marsh, never mind the Phal. We did get lost, and ended up down some country lanes leading to a farm. By 3:00 we had found the area and was waiting. I went to talk to a birder who was already there, he told me, if it's here, then it's hiding. Another birder came, and looked quite familiar. We recognised each other from the Great Grey Shrike twitch up at Lytham Moss. He told me about a Corncrake which I should go and see, it has even been spotted trying to mate with the local Grey Partridge!


By 3:30, the Phalarope made a distant appearance, in one of the meanders. It was just a black spot! It stayed around that area for about half an hour, until a Buzzard flew over and the next time I looked, it had disappeared.

Most of the birders had gone, I also saw someone I recognised but they didn't stay as they had already been there for a few hours before. At 4:20 we spotted the Phalarope in the middle of the channel, which were better views than before, but not the best, due to the reflection of the sun. Unfortunately it was only there for a minute as it was rudely disturbed by a defensive Shelduck. It was later spotted back in the meander. We decided to head back home, I'm hoping to go back on Wednesday if it is still there.