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Friday, 2 January 2009

GLAUCOUS-WINGED GULL DELIGHTS 110 OR MORE TWITCHERS

The second-ever GLAUCOUS-WINGED GULL for Britain, an adult, is present for a third day in Cleveland, commuting between ploughed fields and the Cowpen Bewley Landfill Site. It was first located this morning at 0900 hours flying over the tip and was then seen again for about five minutes in the same ploughed field alongside the main road mid-morning. From 1100-1112, it sat well back from the road in private fields before being flushed and was then not relocated until 1430, when it was on Holme Fleet until 1515. It was seen by approximately 110 observers today

In Cornwall, the first-winter SNOWY OWL remains on Trendrine Hill, Sperris Quoit, about 1200 yards south of the B3306, roosting by day in the gorse or on the ground. Please keep a respectable distance from the bird and DO NOT, under any circumstances, purposefully flush it.

For the second winter running, Britain and Ireland are once again experiencing large numbers of CATTLE EGRETS, with 5 still around the small herd of cattle at Sharpham Park, Walton Heath (Somerset) (including last year's young from the breeding record), 2 on Tresco (Scilly), 2 by the B3311 in Halsetown, near St Ives (Cornwall), 3 at Sellan Farm, NE of Drift Reservoir (Cornwall), 4 on the Kingsbridge Estuary (South Devon) and singles at Day's Lock, Dorchester-on-Thames (Oxfordshire), Exminster Marshes RSPB (South Devon) and on the Gannel Estuary (Cornwall).

The two PENDULINE TITS have been performing well for several days on reedmace along the new boardwalk trail adjacent to the Aveley Pools at Rainham Marsh RSPB (Essex) whilst surprise finds today included a PALLAS'S LEAF WARBLER showing well at the end of the northern path near the dam at Kenwith NR (North Devon) (consorting with a Firecrest beneath tall Firs and viewable from the gate at SS 446 274) and a GREATER SHORT-TOED LARK on the NE side of Arbroath (Angus) at the edge of the first ploughed field along Seaton Cliff (accessed from the car park at the north end of Arbroath Esplanade).

In Hampshire, the first-winter drake Ring-necked Duck was again at Passfield Pond, SE of Bordon (SU 825 340), the adult RED-BREASTED GOOSE on the Avon Floods at Keyhaven Marshes, the wintering GREAT WHITE EGRET on Rockford Lake, Blashford Lakes HWT and Caspian Gull on Ibsley Water.

In Norfolk, the regular returning adult white morph ROSS'S SNOW GOOSE was with 12,000 Pink-footed Geese in grass fields along the north side of the Acle Strait (A47) (Norfolk), small numbers of Taiga Bean Geese in the Yare Valley at Buckenham Carrs and Cantley and Black Brants at Titchwell and Wells-next-the-Sea.

In Fife, a LITTLE BUNTING was with Reed Buntings for a second day at the junction of the footpath and Peat Inn, 600 yards NE of Coaltown, east of Ceres (at NO 420 121).

The near-adult drake KING EIDER continues to show well in Fife, favouring the bay to the east of Kincraig Point and along the west side of the golf course at NT 478 993, whilst the female Ring-necked Duck is still on Martnaham Loch (Ayrshire) and a drake AMERICAN WIGEON at Caerlaverock WWT (Dumfries & Galloway). Also in Ayrshire, the adult white morph SNOW GOOSE is still with Greylag Geese in stubble south of the minor road to Alloway opposite the entrance to the Equestrian Centre at NS 372 170, whilst the wintering RICHARDSON'S CANADA GOOSE was with Barnacle Geese at Borve, Berneray (Outer Hebrides) and at least two SMALL CANADA GEESE with Barnacle Geese at Caerlaverock WWT.

In South Wales, a first-winter drake LESSER SCAUP remains at Cosmeston Lakes CP (Glamorgan) (this same location also harbouring a male Bearded Tit), with the long-staying drake HOODED MERGANSER at Radipole Lake RSPB, American Green-winged Teals at Capringstone Flash (Ayrshire), Edderthorpe Flash (South Yorks) and near Kirkwall (Orkney).

In a good winter for RING-BILLED GULLS, we have two first-winters at Helston Boating Lake (Cornwall), the 2nd-winter at Lamby Lake (Glamorgan), the adult in Dundee (Angus) and the regular adults at Westcliff-on-Sea (Essex), Walpole Park Boating Lake, Gosport (Hants) and on the Isle of Dogs (London).

Large numbers of BOHEMIAN WAXWINGS remain throughout Britain, from Ayrshire and Clyde in the north to Southampton in the south.

In IRELAND, Nimmo's Pier in Galway Harbour is the premier place for rarities, with the regular FORSTER'S TERN, adult NORTH AMERICAN HERRING GULL, up to 5 Iceland Gulls and a juvenile Glaucous Gull. Up to 6 CATTLE EGRETS remain in County Cork at Inchydoney, with 3 more in County Waterford.