Saturday, 2 November 2013

A walk on the coast

Today was a walk on the coast. A few days ago Sue Sayer of the Cornwall Seal Group sent me a few images of Guillemot and Kittiwake colonies in my local area. The images were taken from a boat whilst undertaking a Seal survey earlier in the year.
First thing first, a quick check of Hells Mouth for Fulmar returning from their moult at sea brought nothing although I could feel the anticipation. They've been gone for 8 weeks now so it cant be too long before they return. Afterwards a quick 5 minute drive and I parked up in Tehidy Country Park, started to spit rain so it was waterproofs and  wellies. A few minutes into the walk and I realised how lucky I was for staying alert - the coast path was on the beach following another landslide. Barbed wire fencing is not the easiest thing to get over when wearing waterproof trousers.  

Shortly after the rain became much heavier and with a strong wind eventually became torrential. I was forced to take shelter but unfortunately there wasn't any - I had to lie adjacent to the path with only 2ft high gorse to protect me. It was at this moment that I remembered the waterproof trousers I was wearing leaked around the inner thighs. Whilst my jeans started to get wet I was in a way grateful to have them as they were preventing the gorse from penetrating my buttocks! The weather was foul but there was something oddly enjoyable about lying down in these conditions for shelter. I questioned my sanity.

It didn't take long for the rain to pass and I was able to start again heading down into a valley -

and up the other side

Whilst checking out all the possible areas that seabirds might breed I  came across this -

doesn't look much until you look closer - remains of a Gull, possibly predated by a Peregrine

After an hour I was in Portreath. This is Western Cove, the location of approx. 65 nest records for Fulmar for me in 2012. I didn't cover the area this year, to be  honest I wish I had.

Looking the other way back towards the car is Ralph's cupboard. Last yearthe area held around a dozen Fulmar nests

At Portreath the skies had completely cleared, blue everywhere and what was a pretty birdless trip so far began to liven up on the way back. A group of Goldfinch sat chattering on the wires with a few Meadow Pipit chucked in, a Kestrel came up and hunted against the blue sky whilst a single Raven drifted overhead giving out its unmistakeable deep kronking call. Heading onwards and the distant sound of Curlew calling from the fields could be heard, an awesome pair of Stonechat appeared in the heather and just as I was arriving back I had another pair of Stonechat and a Skylark singing. I stood listening to the Skylark but was unable to see it until half a dozen took to the sky. Wasn't for my benefit mind, think a pair of Raven landing in the field had something to do with it.

Afterwards it was over to my parents to finish off their garden pond that I started two weeks ago for my nephew Elliot. It was constructed the other weekend with two weeks allowed to let the liner settle. It's now 98% finished, couple more plants and a bit more edging around thee front.

the duck was left off the day list.....

and tomorrow - one man's junk is another mans treasure....

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