Monday, 25 February 2013

Tantalisingly close

This morning was one of those lovely mornings with no wind, clean crisp air. On my way to work, set against the red sky of a rising sun a Kestrel hovered hunting its first meal of the day. Topping up the feeders at the patch listening to the birds singing re-iterated just why I have the urge to retire as early as I possibly can to enjoy many many more of these moments.
The weekend saw a check of the sea bird colony at Hells Mouth. The Cormorants are now surely only days away from laying. A fifth nest has appeared, two others now look as though they are fully built. The Shag are now sitting comfortably on their nests rather than standing although eggs are probably still two weeks away yet. It felt strange watching both species bringing in nest material whilst it snowed heavily. Luckily the snow was only in for a few minutes.

On the patch at Stithians and a 3rd Great Crested Grebe has turned up. 3 pairs existed last year but only two pairs bred. No other signs of activity although in the cold NE wind that doesnt surprise me at all.

Below are two images of Hells Mouth. The first shows the area used by the Cormorant year on year and the second shows the current Cormorant territories in red with Shag in white. A completed image will be posted later in the year. The top of the ridge used by the Cormorant is around 4ft wide with the South West Coast path affording a splendid viewing opportunity without causing disturbance.

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