In the car park I noticed a far-off shorebird which seems to be undeniably a Long-billed Curlew, but hazy and uncertain opinions from other birders puts me off. The bill seems far too long for a Whimbrel to me.
This gull is not yet identified. Its probably a California or a Herring.
It was undoubtedly a Brent Goose (*cough* Brant *cough*) and it was completely unexpected. There had been previous reports of a single
Brant Brent Goose at this location for a while, but there was a fair gap between the last report and now. I wasn't looking for it because I already had decent Brent Goose pictures from SeaWorld in San Diego, but it wasn't something to ignore.
FYI I dislike the name Brant, which seems to have occupied the minds of birders outside of Europe. There is no "Brent Goose" in North America.
It flew out to sea and disappeared again, but later when I was walking down the rocks it flew over and landed right beside me. I can't think of any other place where you could get within 2 metres of a Brent Goose. They are just never this tame and even if they are they tend to be out at sea or in marshy wetlands which are downright unaccessible.
|This picture was taken at 0% zoom just to show how close it was. If it helps, putting your hand so it |
aligns with mine gives a better impression of distance.
And still no Surfbird. Someone who had visited on the same day as me had 80 of them. Where are an earth are they?