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A foggy start to the 13th, after an overnight drive from Norfolk.  Any thoughts of a seawatch at Pendeen were soon discounted as the sea was barely visible!  However, a bedraggled looking Kestrel provided a misty shot and a Rock Pipit was also seen.

Further up the road, near Porthgwarra, a Peregrine was seen on the ground in a tilled field.  Again, a misty photographic opportunity!

A look for the reported Glossy Ibis at Stithians Reservoir, was again thwarted by the very low visibility.  However, a party of  5 Red Deer were seen and photographed (you guessed it), once again-in the mist.

The morning of the 14th looked a lot more promising (weather-wise) and over 'breakfast' a look over the Hayle Estuary found Common Sandpiper, Curlew, Black-tailed Godwit and Little Egret.  Visibility at Pendeen was much better and several Gannets and at least 20 Puffin were seen, plus a couple of Rock Pipits.

A return visit to Stithians Reservoir found the Glossy Ibis feeding in one of the channels.  Careful approach work allowed for some images to be taken.  Meanwhile, my compardre Jason had seen a Pectoral Sandpiper, but too busy with the ibis I missed that one.  Two Wheatears were also present, a Raven flew over and the five Red Deer were seen again.

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After a bit of a drive around, the 'observation point' to look for the 2 reported Black Kites at Catchall was located.  Four Common Buzzards were present, but, initially, at least there was no sign of the kites.  Eventually one of the kites was observed some distance away, but appeared to be coming closer!  Indeed it was and more or less passed overhead, whilst being pursued by crows.  This individual was quite worn, nevertheless a good bird to see.

A look for Choughs at Cape Cornwall drew a blank, but a few photographic opportunities arose, so all was not lost and a good number of Shags were seen.

Later, a visit to the Cot Valley failed  to see any of the reported birds there, but close views of a female Sparrowhawk and a couple of Chiffchaffs had to suffice.

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A light S.E. and sunny periods (15th) was a welcome break from the previous foggy conditions.  Starting off with a seawatch at Lizard Point saw 3 Balaeric Shearwaters and several Gannets pass by.  A Rock Pipit was  giving its parachuting song flight (in October!) and a Wheatear was also seen perched on the rocks.  30+ Shags were on one of the offshore rocks and at least 2 Ravens were seen.  Later, a Raven and other members of the corvid family were seen on the ground near the lighthouse, close by to what appeared to be a dying rabbit.  However, as it turned out, the seemingly moving rabbit was in fact being animated by a Stoat, which was dragging its kill into the sparse cover at the base of the wall of the lighthouse.

Finally, the main reason for visiting the Lizard appeared when 2 Choughs flew across the fields and were located in a stubble field.  Could not really go back without seeing choughs!

Next stop St. Clement near Truro, where a Lesser Yellowlegs had taken up residence.  Sure enough, albeit distant the yellowlegs was out on the mud at the edge of one of the channels.  Greenshank, Redshank, Curlew, 2 Little Egrets and a very vocal Raven were also recorded here.  On the way back to the car, after indulging in some free russset apples, a Grey Wagtail was seen.

En-route to Norfolk a look for the Rose-coloured Starling at Davidstow Airfield was unsuccessful.  However, a Common Buzzard on a street lamp provided some photo opportunities.

With its rugged coastline, great native flora and fauna, plus the 'occasional' rarety, Cornwall is a really good place to visit and a great Ecological Experience!

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Starlings, but not a rose-coloured amongst them!

Cornwall 2011

Highlights from a fieldtrip to Cornwall during October (13th-15th)