As fishing has now stopped for the winter at Thornton I decided to check out the gull roost today. The wind direction made it difficult as all the gulls were facing away from the car park. It then started to rain. Not ideal conditions although this site is easy to watch in normal prevailing westerlies. Totals today were 1500 + B.H. Gulls, 10 + Common, 2 Herring, 1 L.B.B. and 1 G.B.B.Gull. Nothing to compete with other sites, but I am undaunted and shall persevere. I have already had a Med. this autumn and would love to add an Iceland to the list, having had a Glaucous way back in 1992. Other birds of note this weekend were 2 Ruddy duck, a Thornton tick for R.M.,4 Shoveler and 17 Lapwing roosting on the dam. Hopefully the cold northerly winds will encourage the Carsington water Ring-billed gull to pay us a visit!
This shrub is one of the best for attracting Sylvia warblers. Also known as Himalayan honeysuckle or Pheasant bush. It has attractive flowers and most important warblers go mad for the berries when they are stocking up before migration. I planted several and they now seed themselves . This summer I have caught 26 Blackcap and 4 Garden warblers on the land behind my house, and I put it partly down to the presence of this shrub. I once caught 25 Blackcaps all coming to one plant in my garden over a two week period. So if you have influence over any land areas plant this shrub and look forward to more warblers next summer.
No, not at Thornton, but on the last episode of BBC Round the world in 80 days. Film of at least 2 beaked whales, possibly Trues, breaching. The clip can be viewed on BBC Eyeplayer and is about three quarters into the programme. Can anyone ID them for me? Meanwhile at Thornton a smart male Blackcap is enjoying the mild weather.