16 June, 2011

Midweek Anecdote.

The fun on Scilly reminded me of an incident on Sunday, which I neglected to include in my post [well, not exactly short as it is...]. Its now Thursday and I've finally got around to posting it...

So, there we are, [Famous Devon Birder] and I, sitting at the Nose, when I pick up something big, dark and Gannety. Its a Gannet. A very dark one. Flying south, a little differently from the others, more resolutely going its own way and ignoring the weather - no shearing or messing about here, it's even a little above the horizon! Wow indeed, I hear you think. Only this Gannet is dark. All dark. Like a frickin' juvenile.

'WTF' thinks I. "I've got a very dark Gannet here, it looks like a juvenile, but it can't be; it's far too early" says I. Now, I'm sure some of you are thinking things at this point, and wondering when the 'B' word is going to appear, but I can honestly say the thought barely registered - it had that young Gannet's Booby-like face thing going, but I did not for a second think it was anything other than a Gannet. After a brief discussion, we agreed that it must be a very retarded 1s Gannet*. I remembered something I blogged last year and made a mental note to repeat it...

Gannets; Buzzards of the sea!

[*A 1s Gannet should, of course, look just like a ginormous Great Shearwater...]

Finally, I think its worth saying that there was a noticeable shift in the age distribution of Gannets since the last time I seawatched [was it Beesands?]. Earlier this year the Gannets were almost entirely adult, on Sunday there were many more immature birds; a few 1s with lots of 2s and 3s.

[[[Ok, yes, I must confess that, since the Scilly Affair came to my attention, I have had a look at 1s Brown Booby and gone "Oh, that's interesting..". It was still a Gannet, though.]]]

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