Common Scoters 01-08-2005
Very many thanks for this Tony. Well worth the wait and of great interest!
----- Original Message -----
From: Tony Gough
Sent: Monday, September 05, 2005 9:00 PM
Subject: Re: Common Scoters
Sorry to be so late in replying re the Scoters, but if the info is still of use, here is a precise of my notes. The birds were first seen (and identified) by Martin Taunton at 2.41 pm on Monday, 1 August 2005, and I got onto them fairly quickly with the other observers present (Chris Peckover, Alan Tremethick and Ken Limb) all eventually seeing them. I never got an exact count I could trust, if not for want of trying, and settled for 35+ in the end. The birds were flying very high over the up-valley side of the fell to the NE. I can only guess at the altitude of the flock, but it had to be in the region of 2500 feet - they must have been at least a thousand feet above the fells. The flock was moving rapidly westwards or perhaps north-westwards and the birds crossed the valley well upstream of where we were, only to disappear in a trice into some high, grey cloud at 2.43 pm, when well to the north of us. The birds looked all black in colour and perhaps they were all males, but the views were long range (1,5 miles?) and impossible to be sure of plumage detail, even at high mag with the 'scope. The birds generally flew in V-formation, but the flock seemed to keep changing shape with the legs of the V independently compacting somewhat and then stretching longer.
That's it, David. Hope it helps.
5 September 2005