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Spurned

November 2, 2013

School half term, and Super Girl was off to Disneyland Paris with the Scouts, so the rest of us decided that it was time to catch up with some birdwatching. To be honest birdwatching isn’t SG’s favourite thing, she tends to take to her book when we get the binoculars out, so she wasn’t going to feel like she was missing out.

There was a big storm coming, but Mr Pict was relieved to see that it should have got over its worst before we got to our campsite on Monday, rather less relieved when I pointed out that it would be blowing itself out nicely round about the time that the Scouts were due to be on the ferry. As it turned out, she was delayed by 6 hours, and had a pretty unpleasant crossing but Mr P’s predictions were correct and after heavy rain over the Pennines we had three pretty good, if blustery days.

We started off at Fairburn Ings near Leeds, some beautiful walking through the trees, but nothing new in the way of birds, other than a sprightly little tree sparrow. And so on to Spurn Point, renowned among proper bird watchers, and we were hoping that a little of the magic might rub off.

Our campsite was very well situated, and appropriately provided with exceedingly loud ducks who dashed over to gather round and discuss us among themselves at the least sign of activity. The storm was still blowing itself out that first night, and we were all slightly spooked by the wailing sound, until we realised that it was the bike rack on the back of Moomin pretending that it was an aeolian harp.20131102-233508.jpg

The point is a strange and desolate place, we sat in the sea-watching hide and eavesdropped on weatherbeaten yorkshiremen with their telescopes and so were able to get a lovely view of some whooper swans heading south. Great to watch the ringing station there in action too, catching and bagging up tree sparrows. We spent our afternoon walking round the ponds, we didn’t mean to walk round all of them, but the map wasn’t quite as clear as it might have been, and it did mean that we inadvertently visited our most fruitful hide of the visit.

Foolishly I felt that we hadn’t really done Spurn Point justice on the first day and thought that we should walk to the end. I really hadn’t taken on board quite how far that is. We pressed on doggedly, and pretty briskly given that Boy Wonder was setting the pace, but after two hours (admittedly we did stop at the hides as well) we decided that we were close enough and turned for home, very grateful to have the wind behind us for a change. It did yield my first ever twite and brent geese though, so it wasn’t entirely in vain. All in all, the trip took our list up to 61 species, which feels a bit more like it.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. pictfamily permalink*
    November 16, 2013 6:17 pm

    You’re very welcome 🙂

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