Monday, 17 October 2016

Siberian Accentor - 16th October 2016

We rarely twitch these days, the key word being rarely! We drove up Saturday night and stayed in the cheapest room we could find on the east side of Hull. Having heard of the 900+ people that descended on the back garden in Easington on Friday, we were up and out by 6.30am. There was a bit of a drive but we were soon there and parked in the allotted field, walked through the high street and up a road closed by the Police - for the twitch.

The Siberian Accentor was very obliging and we'd had good views and were on our way inside of an hour.

Siberian Accentor record shot

Then, we drove to Kilnsea, visited the ringing station, meeting BR from Aus and AW, and got onto a Dusky Warbler outside the ringing shed, one of several in the area. We had a chat with people we usually only converse with on social media then made our way to the Crown and Anchor, failing to see the Ring Ouzel chucking from the roadside hedgerow. There was no sign of the birds alleged to be at the pub car park, so walked along the canal path where we had good views of the Radde's Warbler at the north end.

View from the canal path, Kilnsea

Continuing on, it started to rain, but that didn't stop us finding the somewhat bedraggled Shorelark on the beach.

A quick stop off at the sea view cafe turned into a longer stay as heavy rain sent birds and birders alike into cover, with more chatting in person, rather than facebook, as the ringers had also given up! Then, it was back to the car via the Crown and Anchor where the Pallas's Warbler and Yellow-browed Warbler were eventually seen, also a Firecrest from the grounds of the chapel.

We decided not to try for the Olive-backed Pipit at the tip or Red-flanked Bluetail at Donna Nook, heading instead, via some Tundra Bean Geese outside Kilnsea, for the Western (Purple) Swamp Hen at Alkborough Flats. This turned out to be the most elusive of all the birds - but we persevered as it was a new UK bird, and eventually saw it!

Other observations at Alkborough included Marsh Harrier, Bittern, Little Egret, Cetti's Warbler, Bearded Tit, Avocet, Black-tailed Godwit, Grey Plover, Dunlin, Redshank and the usual duck species.

It was a mammoth rarity birding day for us, compared to what we normally do these days in the UK, with a lifer and additional UK tick as well as some really nice other species that we've not seen for a while.