Monday, 14 September 2009

Gibraltar Point NNR, Lincs 12th September 2009.

Views from Mill Hill viewpoint
looking towards the visitor centre

The East Dunes
As the weather looked good for a movement of migrants from the continent, me and John decided to check out Gibraltar Point NNR, near Skegness in Lincolnshire.
Although over the last three times I have been to Gib I've had a shite time dipping the main target species, this time it felt different. For a start the reserve was devoid of twitchers (not birders) and you could find your own birds.
Starting at the Beach car park we slowly walked towards to the Mill Hill viewpoint and tried to find the previous day's Common Rosefinch (which in fact was in a totally different part of the reserve!).
Reaching the viewpoint, the only birds of notes along the path was a group of Linnets and Goldfinches but no sign of the Rosefinch.
At the viewpoint we scanned the surrounding sea buckthorn for migrants and noted good numbers of Chiffchaffs, Blackcaps,Lesser Whitethroats a couple of Marsh Harriers passing through.
Retracing our footsteps we checked out the Mere Hide on the way back to the car park and found 4 Spotted Redshanks, 2 Black tailed Godwits, a single Reeve and at least 8 Little Egrets feeding on the muddy scrape.
Parking by the visitor centre, we were soon walking down the road as a small group of birders were looking into the nearby sycamores(via seeing a Black Darter in a road side hedge!!).
Joining the group we were soon watching an elusive Pied Flycatcher and then a little later Kev Wilson (Site manager)then found a Yellow-browed Warbler in nearby trees, which promptly disappeared, which John then re found as it feed in trees in the West Dunes (which was across the road really!).
The Yellow-browed showed well for the next ten minutes but it was just too active for any photos to be taken.
After a spot of lunch,(OK a late brunch) we then checked out the East Dunes and the Wash Shoreline for more bird finding.
Checking the dunes we found more of the same in the form Lesser Whitethroats, Chiffys and the odd Blackcap. Scanning the sea we picked up at least 3 Arctic Skuas harrying the local Sandwich Terns and one of the highlights of the day was of a skein of 50+ Pink-footed Geese flying south towards Norfolk.
After searching the dunes myself and John were starting to flag so we decided to call it a day and reflected on an excellent day out to Lincs coast on the way home.
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