A south easterly is almost always pants when it comes to seawatching from the Sefton coast, especially in the depths of winter.
So it takes a special type of eejit to venture out for a session ‘scoping a low high tide from Ainsdale.
There was some method in my madness today though as south easterlies tend to flatten out the sea, sending small waves breaking back out against the swell.
This means that any Common Scoters out there, rather than dozing with the current at their backs, are awake and alert, cresting into the waves, and crucially showing their heads – just the job when you’re looking for interesting bits of white plumage…
The downside of a south easterly is that it does disperse the scoter and numbers fall – presumably many move off to the north towards Shell Flats, but they’ll be back again.
Unseasonably mild with a few sharp showers, I gave it an hour from 1245 to 1345.
Ainsdale, 1245-1345, SEly f4, cloud, showers:
Common Scoter 250
Red Breasted Merganser 7 (5m 2f)
Scaup 5 (4m 1f)
Red Throated Diver 1
Admittedly as cunning plans go, it wasn’t overly successful, with scoters scattered over the sea, largely distant and in low numbers, but 5 Scaup were good and mergs are always welcome.
There are worse ways to spend a lunch hour.