Some amaz­ing late rar­i­ties were enough to break the UK year record, re­ports Lee Evans

Bird Watching (UK) - - Uk Bird Sightings -

FOUR AD­DI­TIONAL SPECIES in Novem­ber took the to­tal recorded in Bri­tain and Ire­land in 2016 to a record­break­ing 458. Among those four was the first-ever Masked Wag­tail – show­ing well for all-com­ers in the small, pic­turesque vil­lage of Cam­rose, NNW of Haver­ford­west, in far south­west Wales from at least 26th into De­cem­ber. This black-and-white wag­tail from cen­tral Asia has only been recorded in the West­ern Palearc­tic on 12 oc­ca­sions be­fore, mostly in Kuwait (six) and Is­rael (three), and is seem­ingly win­ter­ing. Other un­doubted high­lights of Novem­ber in­cluded Suf­folk’s first-ever Cliff Swal­low from 4th-6th, show­ing very well, of­ten around the Mins­mere RSPB vis­i­tor cen­tre. Also, there was the UK’S 13th-ever Dusky Thrush af­ford­ing ex­cel­lent views in Bee­ley Vil­lage in the Der­byshire Dales, from 25th un­til at least 8th De­cem­ber. And now for the re­main­der of Novem­ber’s rare bird news. David Roche seems to have dis­cov­ered yet an­other win­ter­ing ground of White-billed Divers, when first find­ing three feed­ing birds off Mull Head, Papa Westray (Orkney) on 12th, im­me­di­ately ris­ing to six next day and then a re­mark­able 13 by 5th De­cem­ber; prov­ing how deep wa­ter and sharply ris­ing cliffs play a role in the win­ter­ing choices of this high Arc­tic species. Some very late Cory’s Shear­wa­ters were present Lee Evans is the UK’S most well-known and fa­nat­i­cal ‘twitcher’, hav­ing recorded 588 species in Bri­tain and Ire­land, 863 in the wider West­ern Palearc­tic and 386 in just one cal­en­dar year in the UK. He has writ­ten many or­nitho­log­i­cal publi­ca­tions and runs nu­mer­ous bird­ing tours through­out the year, in­clud­ing cus­tom-led trips. Visit bbabird­ing.blogspot.co.uk and uk400­clu­brarebird alert. blogspot.co.uk in the North Sea, in­clud­ing a bird seen at sev­eral lo­ca­tions off of the north Nor­folk coast on 1st, while in East Sus­sex, the im­ma­ture Red-footed Booby picked up ex­hausted at St Leonards Beach, Hast­ings, on 4th Septem­ber was fi­nally flown to the Caribbean for re­lease. The adult Dal­ma­tian Pel­i­can re­mained on the Camel Es­tu­ary at Rock (Corn­wall) un­til 7th, be­fore mov­ing back to the Re­stronguet Creek at Devo­ran, near Truro, where it was last seen on 19th prior to a se­vere drop in tem­per­a­ture. A cou­ple of Night Herons were seen in Novem­ber, with an adult in Bradgate Park (Le­ics) on 5th and a ju­ve­nile on San­day (Orkney) on 24th. Cat­tle Egret num­bers con­tin­ued to in­crease, with up to seven wan­der­ing birds in Co. Cork and at least an­other three in Co. Wex­ford in Ire­land, the six at Bur­ton Mere (Cheshire)/marsh­side Marsh RSPB (Lancs), four to six at Framp­ton Court Sail­ing Lake (Gloucs). There were at least 15 else­where, in­clud­ing three at Gap­ton Marshes, Brey­don Wa­ter (Nor­folk) from 13th, two at Skid­brooke (Lincs) from 1st-21st, long-stay­ing birds at Dun­geness (Kent), Nene Washes RSPB (Cambs) and Chew Val­ley Lake (Avon) and a re­turn­ing adult at Iken (Suf­folk) from 16th. Pem­brokeshire’s win­ter­ing Squacco Heron was re­lo­cated in gar­dens NW of Saun­der­s­foot at Pentle­por from at least 13th-19th while more than

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