This unassuming backwater had been the scene of an alleged frenzied attack on an innocent garden at the weekend by one of the Daleks (short, fat and big lens). Just ignore that last sentence if you haven't been following the latest birder/photographer in bad behaviour episode.
Today all was calm and well behaved, Lancs photographer Gary Jenkins had the prime position and the Black-throated Thrush behaved impeccably for an hour acting like it owned the place and 'doing grievous' to a couple of local Blackbirds. The light was dreadful in fact I was at 1/50-1/80 shutter speed range to even get a recognisable record shot.
Newholm, North Yorkshire
A Willow Tit put in a brief appearance in a nearby garden for a year tick but unfortunately the aforementioned eagle eyed GJ called it first and cheated me out of a self found year tick.
I came back via Sleddale on the North York Moors and whilst I had a few confiding Red Grouse I failed to see any raptors more exciting than a Kestrel. Two Green Woodpecker on a wall adjacent to a large area of heather moor appeared slightly out of place.
Red Grouse, male
Sleddale, North Yorkshire
Halfway back an email came through from Birdguides that the Water Pipit was 'showing well' at St Mary's Island, with an hour spare I changed route back through the Tyne Tunnel and nipped down to see if I could get a picture, you guessed it, not a sniff.
However whilst wandering around the large rafts of washed up seaweed I did come across several Turnstone feeding on what I think are the Ray's Bream that Tim Sexton has mentioned on his blog. I have read in the murky past of Turnstone feeding on human corpses and they certainly appeared to be relishing the fish, repeatedly coming back to tuck in even though I was crouched only 5metres away. It made for an interesting end to the day.