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Sunday, 3 November 2013

Storm Brings Rare Bird

Last week's St Jude Storm bought a very unusual and unexpected visitor to Milford on Sea.

Red Breasted Goose
Picture By: Bernard Barwick
click image to enlarge
Whilst Sky News were camped out at the seafront awaiting a disaster to report, and a hardy group of bird watches stood in the seafront shelter keeping a keen eye out for a rare find on the strong winds, they all missed a feathered friend, way off course and heading for Carrington Park.
Local resident, and keen twitcher, Bernard Barwick was out walking with his grand-daughter, looking to get some dramatic, morning-after seascape photographs.
Much was as normal, so the photo opportunities were few. Well, that was until he spotted a very rare vagrant bird sheltering and feeding in the third field at Carrington Park!
Sitting happily in a very large flock of Brent Geese and Lapwings was a Red Breasted Goose. They are quite colourful on their own but merge very easily in a large flock of Brent Geese.
Bernard told us that "This type of goose is rated as 'V**' indicating a Vagrant seen in the UK only once or thrice a decade, that is quite enough to get the twitchers  juices running."
A subject Bernard is obviously well informed on, he went on the say; "Both types of geese breed in the Arctic Tundra, the Brents then fly south to UK and N Europe, whereas the Red Breasts fly much further, to Iraq. Very rarely a Red Breast attaches itself to a flock of Brents as a fellow traveller. This one was fortunate enough to be able to rest and feed up in the very wildlife friendly refuge of Carrington Park. I was delighted to be in the right place at the right time as I have started wildlife photography this year but sadly I did not have my big ‘twitching’ lens handy.  The pictures are not as good as I would have hoped for such a rare sighting, but still a delightful addition to my collection."
When you see the picture of the flock, it is quite amazing how Bernard managed to pick out our special visitor. It is clear, this exciting find will have many twitchers wishing that they were there.

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