Monday 27th April 2020

Monday 27th April 2020

Birding in Lockdown: Links to Garden Lockdown Listing League and our Birding Ideas Page, helping to make the most of extra time as a result of the lockdown. (Garden listing posts from the past week have now been updated, and we’re up to an impressive 46 gardens in the league).

Late news, 24/4, Men-an-Tol: 1 Grasshopper Warbler, 1 Cuckoo, 1 Wheatear, 1 Willow Warbler.

Late news, 26/4, Carclaze: 1 Common Sandpiper over 2155. (D Cooper)

Truro: 1 Wryneck reported in garden at Kenwyn.

Sladesbridge: 1 Hobby. (D Julian)

Wadebridge: 1 Lesser Whitethroat singing this am. (D Julian)

College Reservoir: 1 Garden Warbler singing. (T Phelps)

Willapark headland, Bossiney: Osprey at 08:20, also 30+ mixed hirundines, mainly Swallows but few House Martins and 1+ Sand Martin flying low feeding over bluebell meadow, 4+ Whitethroat, Skylarks. (L Hall)

Newlyn: Glaucous Gull still on South Pier. (DK Parker)

Mounts Bay: 6+ Great Northern Divers, 24 Common Scoter, c50 Whimbrel. (DK Parker)

Marazion Marsh: Turtle Dove flew towards Ludgvan at 10:20. (L Proctor)

Penzance: Lesser Whitethroat singing on the west side of Tesco’s. (P St Pierre)

St Just: 2cy Iceland Gull, c200 Manx Shearwater, 2 Whimbrel north, 9 Oystercatcher, 2 Wheatear, 5 Blackcap, 2 Sedge Warbler, 2 Sand & 1 House Martin. Also pod 35-40 Common Dolphins moving south 08:45-09:10. (D Flumm)

Iceland Gull – Dave Flumm

Iceland Gull – Dave Flumm

Drift Reservoir: 57 Whimbrel. (D Flumm)

Goss Moor: Numbers of Blackcap, Chiffchaff, Willow Warbler and Garden Warbler, 1 Grasshopper Warbler and 1 Sedge Warbler. (M Jones)

Trewavas Head: 1 Wheatear, 4 Linnet, 3 Common Whitethroat, 4 Juvenile Raven, 2 Stonechat, 1 Basking Shark. (J Evans)

Crowlas: 1 Yellow Wagtail over mid morning. (G Healey) Also c30 Sand Martin, c10 House Martin, c25 Swallow and 1 Snipe all over. (R Veal)

Truro: A pair of Siskin again present in a private garden. (D Jenkins)

Kingsmill Lake: 4 Greenshank, 3 Whimbrel, 2 Little Egret, 2 Grey Heron, 9 Shelduck, 3 1st sum Black-headed Gull 2 Lesser Black-backed Gulls & c.150 Herring Gulls. (P Kemp)

Polbathic Creek: 3 Whimbrel, 1 Greenfinch. (A Blonden)

Downderry: 22 Great Northern Divers, 1 Red-throated Diver, 1 Manx Shearwater and 1 Common Scoter. Maximum of 12 Whimbrel early evening. (A Payne)

Carclaze: 1 Tree Pipit over. (D Cooper)

Tolcarne: 2cy Iceland Gull still. (M Ahmad)

Mount’s Bay: 25 Great Northern Diver, 3 Red-throated Diver, 4 Great Skua, 2cy Pomarine Skua, 50+ Arctic Tern, c10 Common Tern, 200+ Common Dolphin, 2 Minke Whale, 2-3 Basking Shark from Mermaid II. (M Elliott)

Falmouth, Pennance Point: 1 Great Northern Diver, 2 Eider (pair), 2 Swallow, 1 Whitethroat, 2 Jay. (S Van Hear) Also Hobby North over garden 16:20, then again at 16:30 heading South West chasing a Kestrel. (G Wills)

Penryn: 1 Muscovy Duck. (M Onoufriou)

Caradon Moor: 1 Cuckoo, 3 Yellowhammer, 1 Green Woodpecker. (D Sharp)

Freathy: 3 Great Northern Diver including one in full breeding plumage. (M Jordan)

Coverack Bridges: 1 Garden Warbler. (D Wright)

Truthall Halt: 1 Wheatear. (D Wright)

Truro: m Blackcap. (I Bott)

Falmouth, off Gyllyngvase Beach: 1 Great Northern Diver, 5 Shelduck (on sea), 2 Guillemot, 1 pair Eider (on rocks), 1 Sandwich Tern. (J St Ledger)

Eider, John St Ledger

Eider, John St Ledger

A Cornwall Lockdown Diary, Day 35

A need to see and feel the sea, so a short trip to Crugmeer near Trevone. The air reeks of coconut-smelling gorse. I am greeted by three female Wheatears, perhaps newly arrived from Africa since they seem reluctant to move. There are Whitethroats pirouetting into the air, exploding with song. From the clifftop I can see Fulmars in snug pairs on their precarious ledges, and there are Guillemots and Razorbills not practising social distancing in their little colony. Why should they? Covid is not their problem. A Fulmar topples into the air and sweeps around the cliff arena in that nonchalant way they have, peering over its shoulder at me as it carves back and forth. Then I come across a male Wheatear and stand a few yards from his cliff edge spot to marvel at his immaculate colours. He just stands there, dead smart in his black, white and grey garb. The sea is flat calm on what may be one the last days of settled weather and there is a solitary Gannet, wing tips almost flicking the water, heading lazily out to sea past Stepper Point.

But the top thrill of this walk was a close encounter with a fox. He was in the field by the road, beautifully lit by the midday sun, un-spooked because the hedge gave me enough cover. He scrutinised the long grass minutely, tilting his head to gauge tiny movements, then leaping into the air and diving snout-first after a vole. He caught three while I was watching. When we parted company, he was only ten paces away through the hedge, still unaware of his admirer.

Simon Marquis (