Wednesday, 18 September 2013

Great Snipe, Kilnsea, East Yorkshire - 15th September 2013

A lovely, confiding, handsome bird - this Great Snipe showed well at the southern end of Beacon Lane, Kilnsea from late Saturday 14th to late Monday 16th.

 Great Snipe (Gallinago media), Kilnsea, East Yorkshire - Sunday 15th September 2013

And some video...

When I arrived around 08:15 on Sunday morning, the bird was roosting in the driveway of Warrenby Cottage. It soon perked up and fed in the garden. The Great Snipe spent most of its time in the ditch on the opposite side of Beacon Lane, seemingly very happy.

Unfortunately, the Spurn Obs Twitter feed announced on Tuesday 17th September that the bird had been found dead and was probably killed by a cat. Before long BirdForum went into it's usual cycle of debate: Blame the cat > kill all cats > hey, I've got a cat, don't blame them, blame wind farms > no, blame humanity > no, blame the Great Snipe > LGRE didn't see it, he's blaming twitchers > blame LGRE! Personally, I blame cats.

This Great Snipe was nice grip back after narrowly missing the last one at Spurn on 5th September 2010. I had just arrived for my first stay at the Observatory, sharing a room with Ray Scally. Ray suggested we go to the pub, then spend the following day birding Spurn together. Great idea, I thought, and while he went off for a shower (saying, "Let's swap phone numbers later"), I drove down to the Point to watch the sun go down. Ray never reached the shower… Someone ran into the Warren to say a Great Snipe had been found outside! Everyone present went out and got good views and photos as it was flushed, flying towards Sandy Point, never to be seen again. Except, I wasn't present. I was starting the car, and heading off to the Point, blissfully unaware (Ray didn't have my number…).

So, yeah, it was nice to see this one, and get such good views. And the fact it was a stone's throw from the one I dipped almost three years to the day made it extra sweet.

Afterwards, I had a walk up the coastal path at Easington. Not much around, apart from the the odd migrating Wheatear and a Common Seal pup. Here are some photos to make you go "aww..."

Common Seal (Phoca vitulina), Easington, East Yorkshire - Sunday 15th September 2013

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