I promised to do at Atlas visit Friday and blog about it. I know that getting too detailed about an individual survey visit isn’t great reading, so I’ll stick to headlines.
It was a gorgeous day for surveying. Visibility was good enough to see the Lake District and Snowdonia, so Herring Gulls and Feral Pigeons were never going to be a problem.
The northerly wind was largely turning the bird migration tap off. This isn’t a particular problem when the survey is recording breeding birds, migrants are the icing on the cake. There were a couple of Meadow Pipits north but that was about it for movement.
There were 20 species in total, which was respectable. In some other years I have seen less than this over two surveys. The peak counts yesterday were eminently predictable, with 120 Feral Pigeons and 98 Herring Gulls. Encouragingly though the final podium place was taken by 20 House Sparrows, continuing to hang on in fragments of bushes in the gardens of Lytham Road.
On the Breeding Bird Survey there is a voluntary option to count mammals. I always do this. In SD3033 this has comprised three cats in 2003, Grey Seals in 2015 and 2020 (two) and several years with sightings of the Rabbits on the grass mound opposite the Pleasure Beach. I didn’t see any mammals this time, but there was food down for the bunnies so presumably they are still about.
Pictures to finish, note the seagull scarer…