The Bittern failed to show in the two hours that I spent at East Chevington, but the crack was good and we were treated to several flybys by a ring-tail Hen Harrier. Also here were 2 Whooper Swan and a drake Scaup.
At the burn mouth the wintering flock of 7 Shorelark were showing very well at the top of the beach in bright sunshine.
From here it was down to Druridge Pools where 2 drake Pintail were on the Budge Field and a Ruff dropped in to feed with Redshank. Unfortunately too far for photos, an ermine Stoat was running along a distant fence-line, pure white, bar the black tip to its tail.
I was hoping to see Whit-fronted Geese at Woodhorn, but the entire goose flock had moved on.
Back in Gateshead a male Stonechat was at Burdon Moor, 12 Wigeon and 5 Gadwall at Lamesley.
A slower start to the new year with a return to work, but I did manage a couple of looks out last week. The first rarity of the year with crap views of the Black Scoter at Goswick was followed by clearing up most of the regular wintering birds.