Wednesday, 27 July 2016

Our Trip To Spurn

Last year I took part in the 'Young Birder of the Year' competition at the Spurn MigFest, one prize I won was a free stay in the new Spurn bird Observatory. Last weekend I decided to use my free stay with my family and spend our time birding. Since we live in Derby I saw this as a good opportunity to improve my wader skills!

As my family and I are trainee ringers, we want to improve our ringing by experiencing ringing with different groups and people, learning individual approaches and methods. We contacted Paul, the warden, to ask him if we could help out and on the Saturday morning we headed out. It was a fantastic opportunity as I got to ring a House Martin and a Swallow, two species I had never done but always wanted to.

Spurn is a fantastic place, on the Humber estuary there were several species of waders, some of which included: Dunlin, Knot, Curlew, Redshank and Golden Plovers.

Saturday evening we watched murmurations of thousands of Dunlin and Knot, creating patterns in the sky. Not only that, but a pair of Peregrines appeared to catch their meal amidst the thousands of waders however they unsuccessful. And to top it all off, just as we were leaving to head off to bed, a Barn Owl flew into the sunset with its prey in its claws.

Sunday involved more ringing, however due to the weather conditions, there weren't many birds about only a few birds were caught. We then went to the canal hide which was quiet, although there were some Yellow Wagtails and a Swallow nest inside the hide, which was being regularly fed by the parents. We also spent some time sea watching a skill I want to develop and hearing the experienced sea watchers shouting out what they have seen was inspiring.

It was also nice to see Georgia Locock, who has been staying there during the week, helping out counting the birds for Spurn.

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