Saturday, 1 August 2009

Seawatching - It really works!!

To tell you the truth I am not a very good seawatcher, I tend to get distracted by land birds around me. Also I am a bit unlucky at SW ( if you believe in luck ), tried it a lot of times around the Purbecks to no avail.....But this time was to be different.

It Started of as always when on the way to the Purbecks with a quick pop into Middlebere. Tide was out again ( I really should look at the tide times!). A few Shelducks and Gulls were pottering around, Hirundines hawked over head and a calling Curlew flew in. Later on I checked the dead trees for the Osprey, yes, there it was on its favourite perch(es) again! ( without the dreadful heat haze so the views were pretty good ) On the way out a couple of Greenshanks flew in.

I wanted to give seawatching a go at Durlston as Balearic shearwaters had been seen of the coast there a few times and it was closer than Portland. Walking along the coast to look for a good spot we did not see much except for some Peregrines ( a juv calling and flying pretty close to us along the cliffs), Stonechats, Kestrels, Buzzards and Corvids.

We decided to seawatch from the dolphin hide as it was nice and sheltered from the elements and I could rest my scope without the tripod on the open ledge. After about 45 mins off countless Gannets passing, I spotted a dark bird flying back and forth close to the surf showing all white underparts. "YES" my first ever Manx shearwater!! later on I got an even bigger surprise when I found another larger Shearwater showing Brownish upperparts and creamy white underparts, a probable Balearic!! ( I am not ticking it though as Manxies can vary quiet a lot ) :)

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