Wednesday, 5 February 2014

New Patch on the Block… LONGHAVEN

New Patch on the Block… LONGHAVEN

Tired of the same ol’ same old…
Tired of sloppy seconds after Reg…
Tired of bumping into other birders on the Patch?

Time for a new start!

Welcome to the Longhaven Patch

Longhaven Patch…'ere be rares!
 Situated on the coast between Peterhead and Cruden Bay, Longhaven is one of those quick stop off points where North-east birders looking for migrants dip into as they trawl up and down the coast during autumnal easterlies.  It’s an easy quick win site with two small sycamores, a few wind blown stunted willows and some rosebay all within 30 seconds of getting out of the car.

It hasn’t got a great track record but then is it properly worked?  

Longhaven and Norway
Total area 1.40km2

278 miles from Norway

The coast is high exposed cliffs with loads of Geos for rares to tuck themselves into and there’s large areas of damp, rough sheep grazed fields for rares to hide in.  There’s a large disused quarry providing shelter for more rares in the sheltered weedy vegetation and scattered patches of gorse which are invariably useless for rares and a pain to work.

Although there’s been no major rarities there (that I’m aware of), it does get migrants with a greenish, firecrest and yellow-browed all in the only two sycamores last September.  So the site has potential.

To the south of Longhaven and the southern end of the patch lies Bullers of Buchan.  A small village that again can hold a migrant or two.  It once had the region’s first Hume’s yellow-browed but nothing much before or since.  But it’s not checked much and I’m sure will hold the occasional bird. 

The patch stretches only a small way inland to capture one of the few areas of trees along this stretch of coast.  I don’t think anybody has ever looked at them so I thought I’d squeeze them into the patch… you never know.

Is this a good patch?

I’m not sure, but it’s new and quite exciting in an area that I’ve only occasionally been to, so worth a year or two of patch listing.

I’ve no idea what the annual tally will be but I guess will be lower than Cotehill, probably around the 120 -125 mark.  But as all new patches invariably underestimate the total in the first year, I’ve set a target of 130 and will see how I get on. 

I’m still keeping Cotehill Patch going as that’s where I live and it does always hold a strong potential for the Best Find even if I will never be able to keep up with Robo Cops (aka Reg) birding intensity.

Happy Days


1 comment:

  1. Wahay! I'll add Longhaven to the scoresheet and you can keep us posted on yer tally!