Wednesday, 20 January 2016

20/01/16

I received word yesterday from an observer saying that they where unsure whether or not there was a 1st winter drake Scaup or Scaup hybrid on the East Float. Although the plumage superficially resembles that of a 1st winter drake Scaup, rarely encountered on Wirral, we believe that the bird is most likely the result of hybridisation, due to it's steep sloping forehead which isn't a feature typically found on Scaup.

Possible Scaup hybrid
Since today I had a free period mum and I went down to the Docks to check out the bird. I found the bird rather close on the water directly in front of the Clock Tower on the East Float, were it was associating with a group of 16 Great crested Grebe, 3 of which were already in there jaw dropping summer plumage.

Possible Scaup hybrid (EM)

Possible Scaup hybrid (EM)

Possible Scaup hybrid, note steep forehead (EM)
The bird appeared to be rather comfily on the outer rim of  the flock, if the bird got too close to the main flock then the bird would be "rejected".

Great crested Grebe (EM)
Afterwards we checked Morpeth, Egerton and the Inlet. Morpeth had a few Black-headed and Herring Gulls and Egerton still had hold of its Little Grebe. The Inlet was proactive today with the low tide resulting in 1 Peregrine, 3 Turnstone, 2 Oystercatcher and 3 Mallard (2M 1F).

Mallards (EM)
A quick drive round to the Gull Roost produced an estimated 120c Gulls (80% Black-headed) containing 2 Great black-backed Gull, 20c Starling, 4 Shelduck, and on the edge of a flock of 3 Meadow Pipit and 10+ Pied Wagtail was 1 ROCK PIPIT, (2nd record). I saw the bird through mums bins but was unable to relocate when swapping to camera so no images were taken, hopefully it'll stay to get photographed.

Meadow Pipits (EM)

Shelduck (EM)


Observers: Elliot and Adele Montieth

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