Wednesday, 12 March 2008

Far Ings 2

Red-throated Diver
Pink-footed Goose (c) 2008 Maurice Gordon
Long-tailed Tit (c) 2008 Maurice Gordon
Great Crested Grebe

We were battling against the wind today, and were again misled by an inaccurate forecast. The wind didn’t die down as predicted during the afternoon. Anne did well to pick out a Pink-footed Goose among the Grey Lags on the field to the first hide (see Maurice’s pic). It may have been there in the morning, but if so, it remained unnoticed! In both sessions one of the first sights from the Main Hide were the 9 Gadwall which had hauled themselves out of the rough water to shelter on the bank with a few Teal, and some of these were still present in the afternoon (Maurice's pic above). Dave S (the 1st) can now identify Gadwall without any prompting! In the morning a duck gave very close views as she continued to dive close to the main hide. Her identity proved problematical, but this was one of the closest views we’d ever had of a female Ruddy Duck. Yesterday we didn’t see any Snipe on the usually reliable pool, but we did find 3 flighty individuals in the morning. Mike C couldn’t find the cryptic plumage of the one sat in the open (above pic) in his binoculars, but he did have a good view of it through Liz’s telescope. Maureen was the first to identify a pair of Bullfinches from this hide in the same place we found them yesterday. The Snipe & Bullfinches were both absent from here in the afternoon, but we did locate several Bullfinches in the central area. Christine couldn’t track them down at first, but she persevered and was rewarded with excellent views of the male. In the hide opposite the hotel Michael G was the first person to spot the ‘bird of the day’ – a Red-throated Diver – which gave better views than yesterday (see above pic). It was elusive at first in the afternoon, but eventually everyone enjoyed the views through Anne’s telescope. Glyn stayed in this hide during the afternoon, so he was the only one to see the Kingfisher, but the Long-tailed Tits he reported popped back twice for everyone to see (Maurice’s pic above). The Great Crested Grebe also gave excellent views from this hide at lunch time. Maurice spotted a Sparrowhawk flying low over the reeds from the hotel hide, but no one else was quick enough to pick it up. Although we didn’t see as many species as yesterday, everyone who made the effort to turn out went home surprised at how much they had managed to see despite the weather.

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