Saturday, September 12, 2009

Wildfowl counting - 12/09/09

Sloe birding today - very few waterfowl to count during the survey. I was surprised by the low numbers of eider and red-breasted merganser. Very little passerine migration either, Sweden may have emptied overnight (light winds and clear).

Had a wildfowl count to do today, despite the fact that I was supposed to be at Falsterbo, with Birding Copenhagen and his crack British team. They may have scored big (short-toed eagle and black kite reported) but I will get down there tonight and find out.

Walked the coast between Dagshög and Hovs Hallar (some ten kilometres). There was very little to count and numbers of all species were surprisingly low. I do this count in January as well and it is rammed with waterfowl then and lots of additional interest too (water pipits being a favourite). Highlights were few and far between considering the mileage but included a confiding peregrine, two pintail and a shag at Torekov and two whooper swans at Ripagården. Despite calm sea conditions only six alcids seen; with two each of black guillemot, guillemot and razorbill. No grebes or divers at all! Amazing.

Another atrocious hand-held digi-nightmare from the boy-Benstead. If you squint it gets quite arty. But you get the idea no doubt, what a stunner.

The other good thing about January counts is that the duck look nice.

Counted a few of these today.

We have had a few whooper swans on patch all summer this year, failed breeders no doubt. The southward migration has yet to begin.

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