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ZEISS DTI thermal imaging cameras. For more discoveries at night, and during the day.

KB57s 2022 year list (1 Viewer)

Sep 24: Druridge Bay, Northumberland
Decided on a multi-site trip up Druridge Bay, starting at Cresswell Ponds. Birder reported a spotted redshank had been on the exposed mud near the hide - I persevered for a while and eventually picked it up on the far side of the pond, giving decent if slightly long-range views with the travel scope.
Next on the list was Druridge Pools - started at the north end, birding slightly spoiled by the loud music from the car park. Met a birder I know on the way back who pointed out migrant hawkers taking advantage of a sheltered glade, and giving great views - must improve my dragonfly ID, I'm sure I've misidentified this species as Southern before.
Next stop was Widdrington Moor Lake, with its large flock of pink feet on the north bank. Red-necked grebe had been reported from here, but the only grebe anyone I spoke to had seen (apart from a few great crested) was a Slavonian at the east end of the lake. After relocating to a more appropriate viewpoint I located it with the help of other birders, one of whom also spotted a marsh harrier on the far bank - looking dark and probably this year's bird.
I followed that up with a trip to East Chevington, where I later learned I managed to miss a pectoral sandpiper, and ended up at Hauxley. This wasn't well planned, arriving just after the cafe had shut at 4, staff emphasising the gates would close at 5.30 promptly...only time for one hide, and my first ever Egyptian goose in Northumberland loafing amongst the feral greylags.

143. Spotted Redshank*
144. Horned Grebe*
145. Western Marsh Harrier


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Nice shots. I can see what you mean about swanlike. I’ve only recently realised just how many of the Hawkers are migrant as well.
Nice shots. I can see what you mean about swanlike. I’ve only recently realised just how many of the Hawkers are migrant as well.
I'm not even sure we used to get that many migrant hawkers up here in the past; the inappropriately named southern was the default lowland hawker, with common more frequent in more upland acidic habitats, and golden-ringed in the uplands proper. I think people are even recording Emperor dragonflies up here now, which I've only ever seen in your part of the world, on the Gwent Levels.
Feeling a little sick and embarrassed at the moment as my bean goose record has been rejected and determined as a pink foot. Starting to doubt my own sanity just now, but I can see what he means - serves me right for looking first and taking photos later....
Nov 07: Whitley Bay
Have been really busy with other stuff lately, and must admit the bean goose episode knocked my confidence - my birding has been restricted to counting common gulls in the local park, and getting distracted from working by fieldfares on the hedge outside my partner's study. I have a pretty high threshold at the best of times for taking time out to chase rarities, but didn't regret finally cracking and going to twitch this one...

146. Pied Wheatear

Top tip for toggers - don't chase birds around, they'll eventually land at your feet - but also make sure you remember to replace your partner's battery back in her camera before setting out :rolleyes:
Dec 02: Tavira, Portugal
Finally accomplished my (partial) move to Portugal - still going to be spending some time in Newcastle and coming back when I need to for work visits. Been here a week and haven't even seen the sea yet, but have racked up three visits to Ikea so far :rolleyes:.
Urban location with a small area of trees outside, so wasn't expecting to be adding much to the seen-from apartment list, but #1 also turned out to be a year list addition:

147: Black Redstart*

Dec 04: Tavira
Partner said she thought she'd seen some sort of martins fly over...I questioned her about whether they were more likely to be swallows, but she said 'robust-looking martins'....treated to another flypast, and turns out she was right! Black redstart is turning out to be regular outside the apartment, together with chiffchaffs and house sparrows.

148: Crag Martin*
Going to get some cool birds if that start is anything to go by. Good luck with your move.
Thanks Owene, really liking it here so far, hoping to do a proper birding day tomorrow if I can avoid waiting in for deliveries / people coming to fix stuff...adjusting to getting excited about seeing robin, song thrush and greenfinch outside the apartment - certainly hadn't seen the first two on my previous holiday trips here, as they're relatively uncommon winter visitors to the Algarve.
Dec 10: Tavira
Took a trip down the Gilão river to Tavira Island on a rare break from buying stuff for the apartment - very quiet here in winter, more turnstones than people hanging around the ferry landing at Quatro Águas...a single flyover Audouin's was the highlight of the ride downriver, along with a group of roosting spoonbills and the now-routine flamingos on the saltpans. Treated ourselves to a lunch of squid and salad on the island, then were treated to a close flypast by an osprey on the journey back upriver.

149. Western Osprey
Dec 17: Vila Real de Santo Antonio
Took the morning train from my local station to the end of the line at Vila Real, where I'd planned a birding circuit with the help of Gonçalo Elias's 100 Best Birding Hotspots in the Algarve book.
First stop was Esteiro da Carrasquiera, just north of the station - a broad creek at the south end of the Castro Marim salt marsh complex. Lots around but no additions to the year list, given the fact I'd visited Portugal in the summer - a reed bunting was probably the most unusual species. Watching crag martins over the eastern part of the channel when a somewhat larger bird flew over:

150. Caspian Tern

Passed on the fishing port as access seemed a little private, and headed down the Guadiana river front, pausing for a coffee along the way before walking down the pier and breakwater at the mouth of the river. A pool adjoining the pier produced a number of waders including whimbrel and a year list addition in greenshank, then I picked my way over the rocks towards the end, not expecting much from a sea watch as there was little breeze or swell - apart from a few Sandwich terns, all seemed quiet. Scanning the sea with the scope more in hope than expectation, I couldn't believe it when I got onto a storm-petrel, close in enough to ID as European. Watched it foraging for a while before it headed further offshore in the direction of Spain. Seen plenty in past pelagic trips from Sagres, but this was my first from shore.
Was hoping for a lifer in the form of Iberian green woodpecker in the pinewoods on the way back to the station, but it wasn't to be - in any event, it would've struggled to eclipse the storm-petrel!

151. Common Greenshank *
152. European Storm-petrel *
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So after hoping for an improvement, I finished 2022 on exactly the same total as 2021...which must qualify as my baseline list when I'm not getting out into nature nearly enough, and doing very little dedicated birding.
Only three lifers - short-toed treecreeper, red-necked nightjar and pied wheatear - all were good, though the nightjar was my personal favourite.
Didn't catch up with all that many species I don't see that often either - of those ptarmigan, spotted flycatcher, Lapland bunting, and storm petrel were the undoubted highlights. Work-life balance is definitely swinging in the right direction though, so even if I don't make time for a massive list in 2023, getting out seeing more birds, more often is an achievable aim.
Yes. I’m not really setting a target this year. I do have 10 days in Florida though where almost everything I see will be new. Not sure how much birdlife you actually get to see on a family holiday there though.

Looking forward to your 2023 write up
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