Monday, November 04, 2013

Donna Nook.....A Cracking Day Out.....03.11.2013.

With the forecast looking good Chris and myself decided to have a full day at the superb NNR at Donna Nook and see what goodies we could turn up.
 We arrived just as the sun was rising,had a quick drink,got our layers on and began to walk North towards Pye's Hall.On the walk down to Pye's we saw our first flocks of Pink-footed Geese and Whooper Swans moving south totalling 53 birds and 7 respectively,3 Pale-bellied Brents were seen in with the Dark-bellied flock and a single Lap Bunt flew over calling,another single seen later on in the day and a single Pintail flew north over the beach.Two Peregrine,an adult and a juv. were perched on a wreck distantly out on the beach and shortly after as we neared Pye's,a single Merlin and male Hen Harrier were seen over Grainthorpe Marsh along with a scattering of Little Egret and Rock Pipit.As we walked out along the developing foreshore a pair of Snow Bunting flew up from our feet.They were watched distantly before flying off south along the beach,with another single seen later near Pye's.Also seen around this area was a lovely 'Charm' of 35 Goldfinch,the yellow in the wings positively glowing in the sun.
Dark-bellied Brent Geese.


South bound Pink-footed Geese.

Dark-bellied Brent Geese.

Male Snow Bunting.

Bull Grey Seal.

Whooper Swans.

Whooper Swans,showing the birds with the unusual bill patterns.

 After having a good look around the Pye's area,we then had a slow walk back towards the car and then had a quick look along the seal colony.There wasn't too many pups yet,being fairly early in the season,with only 36 being born up to date.A visit to the 'Tasty Treats' burger van was a very welcome diversion from the birding!.After a drink at the car and dumping the scopes we then decided to walk south to Quad 3.....or Area 51 as it is comically known.Very little was seen along the beach apart from small numbers of Grey Seals collecting to have their pups and we had the unfortunate sight of seeing 1 female guarding her stillborn baby from a gathering group of scavenging Great black-backed Gulls.When seeing something like this it really brings home the harsh side of the natural world,a side all the visitors to the seal colony don't often see.As we arrived at Quad 3,Chris spotted some Swans at the far end of the flashes,we quickly made our way down to see the welcome sight of a flock of 17 Whooper Swans resting and bathing on the water here.Two adult type birds had unusual bill patterns,1 confusingly similar to Bewick's Swan,with a nearly all black bill.The Swans gave superb views and it was nice to see them alongside their Mute Swan cousins,great stuff.We walked back north again the dune side this time,with the only highlights being a single Chiffie,2 Redwing and a Woodcock at Quad 2.As time was getting on we came to the decision of spending the remaining hours of sun watching from the dell,half way between Stonebridge and Pye's.As we watched both sides of the dune,the tide was beginning to rise and some superb views were gained of the massing flocks of waders and wildfowl on the incoming tide and on the land side we added more good birds in the form of another Hen Harrier,this time a Ringtail,a single Short-eared Owl,juv. Marsh Harrier and a Common Buzzard were added to the days sightings.Another 3 Whooper Swan came in off the sea and landed on the new pools along with masses of Teal and a further 36 Pinks flew south.Another Merlin flew along the fields and one of the Perg's from earlier followed in the same direction.In the distance,we watched as the Little Egrets that had been feeding on the marshes,gathered to roost,with at least 30 birds being seen,a great site to see and one i hadn't seen locally.Other interesting sightings seen during the day included 2 Brown Hare,a sun bathing buck Roe Deer and 3 Common Darter still holding on.As we drove through the outskirts of North Somercotes,the final sighting of the day a Barn Owl was seen and brought to a close another cracking day out!.

No comments:

Post a comment