July 2013

Monday, 1 July 2013 to Wednesday, 31 July 2013

Bassenthwaite Lake: The Ospreys and their two young continued to thrive.

Hodbarrow: Wildfowl included a female Ruddy Duck (6th), three Shoveler and increased numbers of Mute Swans (max. 74) and Tufted Ducks (max.76). A roosting Shag (6th) was unusual. Pick of the waders were single Greenshank, Black-tailed Godwit and Whimbrel. Both Common and Little Terns remained in residence with hopes of at least some breeding success.

Furness: At least five different adult Mediterranean Gulls were found between Bardsea and Rampside.

Inner Solway: A female Marsh Harrier passed through Carr Beds (25th). Waders included a Greenshank at Port Carlisle and five Black-tailed Godwits at Campfield Marsh plus the first returning Whimbrel. An Arctic Skua drifted past Bowness Railings (25th), a Yellow-legged Gull was seen at Wedholme Flow (6th) and two Little Gulls visited Port Carlisle (6th). A passage Yellow Wagtail visited Campfield while a flock of 40 Crosssbills was seen at Cliburn Moss.

Kent Estuary: At least 12 Little Egrets were present. There were occasional sightings of both male and female Marsh Harriers. Waders included up to eight Black-tailed Godwits, 12 Common Sandpipers and the odd Whimbrel and Bar-tailed Godwit while two adult Mediterranean Gulls were also seen (10th).

Outer Solway: Two Arctic Skuas were off St Bees (28th) and adult Mediterranean Gulls were at Lowca and Workington.

Walney Bird Observatory. Offshore highlights in a month when onshore winds were at a premium were limited to a Pomarine Skua (4th) and a Storm Petrel (28th) along with five Arctic Skuas and two Great Skuas. Also seen were good numbers of Manx Shearwaters (max. 367 on 4th), Common Scoters (max. 265 on 21st) and Sandwich Terns (max. 167 on 28th) with smaller numbers of Gannets (max. 69 on 22nd), Little Terns (max. 30 on 8th), Red-throated Divers, Kittiwakes and Common Terns. The first Merlin (25th) and Little Egret (27th) reappeared and four Shoveler were logged (21st). Waders were well represented with Bar-tailed Godwits (max. 140 on 21st), Whimbrel (max. 27 on 21st), Black-tailed Godwits (max. 22 on 25th), Greenshank (max. 10 on 20th), Common Sandpipers (max. seven on 8th), single Little Ringed Plover (10th & 27th-28th) and Green Sandpiper (29th) amongst the commoner species. Southbound migration was in evidence from early in the month with hirundines to the fore including Sand Martins (170 on 8th, 100 on 10th), Swallows (150 on 9th, 150 on 27th), House Martins (10 on -8th and 18th) and Swifts (max/ 30 on 10th). Several Cuckoos were recorded along with totals of six Yellow Wagtails and three Grey Wagtails while single Grasshopper Warbler (14th), Reed Warbler (13th-14th) and Blackcap (26th) were amongst a steady trickle of Willow Warblers.

Other sites: At least two Storm Petrels (6th) were offshore at Selker. A juvenile Black-necked Grebe (25th) and an Osprey were found at Fisher Tarn near Kendal. Six Common Scoters turned up inland at Killington Reservoir (4th) and both a Red Kite (21st) and an Osprey visited Tindale Tarn. A Little Egret and an adult Mediterranean Gull were on the Esk Estuary near Ravenglass and the Esk Estuary at Longtown hosted an Osprey, a Little Egret, two Green Sandpipers and a Greenshank. Other inland waders included 13 Black-tailed Godwits at Thacka Beck N.R. Penrith.