As I pointed out to Mrs Thing at the weekend, nearly everything is a patch tick at the moment. Although the designated patch has been visited before, the visits have been largely brief and largely dominated by Gulls.
However, a more significant visit over the weekend was as you might expect more significant in the birds found. First up, and almost instantly, was a Wheatear bouncing along behind the dunes and quickly joined by another. Top stuff – and in October too. Shortly after this there was the obligatory Med Gull (I’ll explain later this week why I can be slightly dismissive about one of my favourite birds on this patch) and then the usual gulls. There were 50+ Cormorants (diligently scanned for a stray Shag to no avail) and still more gulls at sea. I was hoping to catch site of a distant Gannet for the patch list but the winds were in no way helpful, so it will have to wait until next time. Before leaving there were a few Meadow Pipits and half a dozen Linnets. Nearly all patch ticks and all welcome.
I was hoping that leaving the big smoke would have limited my exposure to the dreaded Feral Pigeon and their confusing flights, but there is a resident flock in the new patch and two of them are totally white. Bastards.
It has been mentally noted that the actual patch and it’s boundaries has yet to be specified. I intend to rectify that little omission this week too. Interestingly (or perhaps not) I’m not including an area of special importance for a wintering bird that is nearby. Just because I can.
Stay tuned kids!