Sunday, 25 January 2015

Black Scoter

Up to Cheswick in north Northumberland this morning to try for the Black Scoter. My first time here, but easy to find and straight ahead across the dunes to view the Common Scoter flock. Distant and poor light it took a few minutes to get my eye in, but between three of us we picked out the Black Scoter. Standing out on structure alone, a bulkier bird with a thicker neck, the swollen yellow bill was obvious in periods of better light. For a few minutes it strutted its stuff, with its tail held upright, while the other scoter dived around it. Also in the scoter flock were several Red-breasted Merganser, Long-tailed Duck and a Red-throated Diver.

At Stag Rocks the sea was like a mill pond, but held few birds. A Black-necked Grebe was close in to the rocks, while further out 6 Long-tailed Duck, 40+ Common Scoter and 2 Red-throated Diver.

At Newton the White-fronted Goose was with plenty of Greylag, Wigeon and Teal.

White-fronted Goose with Greylag and Teal
A trip to Amble failed to turn up the Black Redstart, but there was a very smart Mediterranean Gull.

Mediterranean Gull
No sign of the Green-winged Teal at Druridge .so I headed home via a Twite at Bell's Farm.

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