Monday, 26 August 2013

And suddenly it is clear.




After being fog bound for the last 3 days it was such a joy when it cleared at about 3pm this afternoon. It felt like the curtain had been drawn back, the light switched on, I had been give back my eyesight as suddenly we could see all that we knew was out there but couldn't lay our eyes on. Normally we take our bearings from the sea that is all around us. You constantly check it to see what the wind is doing, what weather is coming next, what birds are out there and what cetaceans are close by. For 3 days that had been removed and once it appeared again as the blue bit between the land and the sky I couldn't get enough of it. The fog had cleared just in time as we had scheduled a wader count for this afternoon so we set off with a spring in our steps.

One of the nearly fledged fulmar chicks, Calum came face to face to one and got splattered.

Great rocks

Calum in action


Redshank

A sanderling, an uncommon record for the island.

The island isn't very big but when you have to hike and scramble all round the high water mark it suddenly seems much bigger. Kirkhaven to the Lowlight takes 5 mins to walk along Holymans but following the coast it takes over a hour. But with a sun overhead and an open sea to the right it was a pleasure. The totals are below:
Turnstone 140, Purple sandpipers 20, Curlew 64, Redshank 18, Oystercatcher 69, Sanderling 1, Common sandpiper 3, Golden plover 1.
And though some are good totals, the number of purple sandpipers is depressingly small. And even more depressing was that the other group covering the north half of the island found a corncrake very nice record!

And once the fog cleared it appears that the Northern Lighthouse board supply ship the Pharos has been moored off the island but we never knew it was there. 



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