Saturday, 19 November 2016

Forster's Tern at Mistley Essex

The story of life tick 380

Texts to Jimmy "Forster's Tern"   "Essex!"

Reply "You going?"

"YEP" " ok meet you in ten minutes"

So at 2.30pm this afternoon we were heading up the A12 hoping to beat the falling light and connect with what would be a lifer for all of us.

As we pulled into the Quay after the sixty mile drive only two other birders were present and news was that they last saw the bird two minutes ago but it had flown out over the dock. We scanned and were quickly joined by about thirty others including LGRE scanning the bay when we picked up the bird heading back in and managed to alert the gathering as the bird came in quite close before turning to head off to the right and out of view. This was to be our only sighting of the target although we waited until the light had vanished before heading home.

The first winter bird flew up river which I'm told means it's crossed the Essex Suffolk border so big news for the guy next to me looking for the Suffolk tick on it.

Yet another gift to land unexpectedly on the year/life list this autumn.

Year list now 276
Life list now 380

Forster's Tern last recorded in Essex in 1998 when one wintered in the West Mersea area.
Total British records I believe to be 57 with the vast majority in the west as you'd expect.

For photographs check out the RBA gallery   

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