Sunday 12 November 2023

Canvasback at Abberton

With news coming out too late yesterday for me to get to Abberton I called the Jims and arranged a trip this morning. We arrived at first light and quickly checked Layer Breton causeway on our way through but with no Pochard present we drove around to Layer-de-le Haye causeway and found about fifty or so birders lining the causeway scanning a small flock of Pochard between the causeways. With no sign of the Canvasback and seemingly nobody checking the farm or Wigborough Bay we decided to try those areas. The bay was very quiet with no ducks present so we headed back down to the farm and followed four other like minded souls upto the hide where we found a large flock of Pochard but they were mobile close to the shore and obscured by vegetation on the banks. The flock seemed to be drifting right then back left with our only chance of seeing the bird being if it drifted into view we set up scopes and started to scan and got our reward as it came into view briefly. The guy next to me put the news out so those on the causeway could join us and we set about getting more views. Walking back down the path and scanning gave us another couple of views and enabled us to pick out the ID features. The bird appeared paler than the Pochard on occasions but depended on the light and the angle of the bird, the head was distinctive as was the all dark sharper sloping bill.

The bird drifted out of view and remained out of site for about forty minutes which was our signal to leave.

Canvasback has been on my radar for years now, knowing that Abberton has previous I always imagined it would be Abberton that provided me with the tick and so it looks to have proved.

Previous accepted records for Canvasback are.........

1996 Cliffe Pools Kent with the first record for Britain on 7th December only

1997 Wissington Beet factory, Norfolk.21st January - 10th March (returned to winter again on 3rd December staying until 9th March 1998. (Presumed same bird at Abberton in Essex on 23rd, 24th and 30th November.)

1999 Abberton in Essex. 6th to 16th April presumed to be the same bird as 1997/98 above

1999 - 2000 Abberton in Essex 8th November 1999 to 15th February 2000 (Presumed same bird as above)

1999 Monks Wall Kent. 28th May

2000-2001 Abberton in Essex 12th November 2000 to 13th February 2001 presumed same as previous and also seen at Ardleigh reservoir on 29th November.

2000 Par Cornwall 19th April only

2000 - 2001 Lade Gravel pits Kent. 29th January 2000 to 14th March 2000 and 18th November 2000 to 8th March 2001

2000 Orkney 21st to 23rd June

2002 Pennington Flash Greater Manchester 11th to 30th July and the last accepted record before todays pending bird.

no more than seven birds in the above records so and no records for twenty one years so quite to rarity providing a year/Essex and lifer tick.

Year list now 229.   life list now 446. Essex list now 277

No comments:

Post a Comment