Carr Vale Sightings Report by Mark Beevers

A surprising new visitor to the reserve

End of week update from Carr Vale and after a bit of a lull the purple patch just got a much stronger shade of purple when at 0845 (today 17th) an adult pale phased POMARINE SKUA, complete with spoons, flew north straight over the reserve. First picked up at 0840 about a mile to the south of us it steadily made it’s way north to a running commentary from yours truly until when over the reserve it was close enough to snap a couple of record shots for posterity (and the rarities committee!). It continued north and I stopped scoping it at 0851. A fantastic addition to the CV list and just the 8th record for Derbyshire, six since the formation of the DOS with the last two records also occurring in May. The overnight rain (0300-0600 guess who was on nights) also produced a couple of Common Sandpipers whilst six Grey- Lag Geese came in, male and female Pochard and two male Teal remained along with a few Great Black-backed and Herring Gulls. Since the 11th the relatively few highlights have been an extra pair of Oystercatchers and Common Terns, Whinchat and a rarely encountered Spotted Flycatcher on that date. An extra pair of Oystercatchers on 12th with a Peregrine, female Wheatear that day with Common Sandpiper, Peregrine and the Wheatear again on 13th. On 14th a brief pair of increasingly scarce Redshank continued a daily run of something new which had run since 17th April plus an extra pair of Common Terns and the Peregrine again. Even rarer than Redshank a pair of Grey Partridge was a welcome find on 15th as was a Kingfisher, another species which has been pretty scarce recently. 17 Gadwall on 15th-16th and at last a reasonable numbers of Sand Martins are showing a lot of interest in the Sand Martin Bank with Peregrine again on 16th.