Wednesday, 9 November 2011

Berry Head and English Channel off S Devon

Today at Berry Head seawatching 11:45-15:30. No large seabird movement, but quality in what passed, especially as 4 auk species seen including a Little Auk and a Puffin (juv/1w). Also 8 Little Gulls (3 ads, 5 1stW), 3 Pomarine Skuas, 8 Bonxies, Manx Shearwater, Red-throated Diver, 7 Common Scoter, 6 Fulmar, 348 Kittiwakes (incl. 60 1stW), 218 Gannets, c400 Razorbill/Guillemot (mostly Razorbills), Brent Goose (heading N) and 2 Harbour Porpoise. MD, ML

Yesterday on a fishing boat approx. 20nm SE of Start Point.

Frustratingly brief view of a largish (long-winged) storm-petrel sp. passing the boat at distance. The bird looked all dark and initial thoughts were of something exotic (Swinhoe's etc). But in hindsight it was probably a Leach's with a much reduced white rump (which was not visible at range - as some do). Sadly it showed no interest in the boat and was quickly gone, but I managed a quick photo as I quickly grabbed the camera. Also good numbers of Kittiwakes, with c250 (most I've seen foraging around the boat), Mediterranean Gull (ad), 6 Little Gulls, 5 Common Gulls, juv Pomarine Skua, 20+ Bonxies, a small skua sp. (most likely, dark phase juv Long-tail, but again gone too quickly) and only a single Fulmar and lots of large gulls.