Friday, 30 December 2016

Round Up 2016

Some of the many highlights of a stunning 2016 for me.

Siberian Accentor, Orkney 27th October. After all the associated trauma and panic, this was the moment!
Gyr, North Uist 8th April. Stunning close views. A beast.
Black-billed Cuckoo, North Uist 24th May. I never thought that we'd get another one of these.
Long-billed Dowitcher, Cresswell 19th April. The long stayer, in almost full summer plumage and in perfect light.
Red-eyed Vireo St Agnes, Scilly 27th September. One of two together. Will never tire of these!
Purple Swamphen Minsmere, Suffolk 2nd August. Not everyone's cup of tea, but I was impressed.
Subalpine Warbler St Mary's, Scilly 12th October. Initially elusive, this really showed well.
Pied Wheatear Redcar, North Yorkshire 30th October. Performing for a large crowd on the beach.
Whiskered Tern Saltholme, Durham 10th May. Ticked the night before in near darkness.
Lesser Yellowlegs St Agnes, Scilly 25th September. Just me and this beauty 15 feet away.
Caspian Tern St Mary's, Scilly 6th October. 3 hours of fretting on St Martin's, then a frantic dash from the harbour.
Dusky Thrush Beeley, Derbyshire 8th December. Awful weather, but a brilliant bird on a 2 tick day with...
Pallid Harrier Welwick, East Yorkshire. Fading light, but cracking views over the marsh.
King Eider Ythan, Aberdeenshire 29th June. My first drake, a bonus on the twitch for...
White-winged Scoter Murcar, Aberdeenshire 29th June. Effing miles away, but very satisfying!
Isabelline Shrike The Leas, South Shields, Durham 29th October. Seen the night before, but posing the next day in the sun.
White-rumped Sandpiper Amble, Northumberland 26th August. Point-blank views thanks to the tide.
Cory's Shearwater Pelagic, Scilly 19th August. Mountainous seas and terror, but wow!
Great Shearwater Pelagic, Scilly 20th August. Passing just a few feet from the boat.
Wilson's Petrel Pelagic, Scilly 20th August. The target of the trip, but a nightmare to photograph.
Pomarine Skua Pelagic, Scilly 17th October. 20 mins over the boat, just feet away.
American Golden Plover and Buff-breasted Sandpiper St Mary's, Scilly 29th September. 2 Yanks out of nowhere.
Sora Tresco, Scilly 3rd October. Out in the open all day.
Bluethroat Hartlepool, Durham 13th May. Performing well by the bowling green.
Eastern Yellow Wagtail St Mary's, Scilly. Not yet a full species, but a cracker like...
Eastern Black Redstart Skinningrove, North Yorkshire. How rare did these use to be?
Melodious Warbler St Mary's, Scilly 27th September. At last!
Caspian Stonechat St Mary's, Scilly 22nd October. A mad dash before the boat home.
With loads more and hundreds of hours seawatching, this was an excellent year. I had a blast.

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