Wednesday, 16 April 2008

Wednesday Spring 1 - Eastrington Ponds

Blackcap (c) 2008 Tony Robinson
Wheatear (c) 2008 Tony Robinson
Willow Tit
Record shot of Mistle Thrush
This was our first springtime visit to this particular location. The day began well with a Blackcap singing in the open in the car park, whilst a Heron flew overhead. Also seen from the car park were Sand Martins and Swallows, and at lunch time there were also 2 male Bullfinches and a female. During both sessions we had good views of Chiffchaff and Willow Warbler, but the morning group also had a singing Treecreeper and a Mistle Thrush eating Ivy berries. Compensation came during the afternoon when Les identified a Barn Owl hunting over some waste ground between the railway line and the reserve. Both sessions saw a pair of tits with nesting material. They were difficult to identify, but one sang in the car park at lunch time and once the feeding station was replenished extremely close views of the Willow Tits were attained. A male Wren was nest building just under the bird tables! A Curlew flew overhead during the afternoon session, which we also heard in the morning. On both occasions a Sparrowhawk was glimpsed making a getaway through the trees at the same location, which suggests it may be nesting nearby. For mammal lovers we had good views of a Water Vole in the morning. If we continue to have such excellent sightings here, this may become a permanent addition to our itinerary. Tony saw the Wheatear on the way to a 2nd location! Today's species total: 40.

1 comment:

polly said...

Thanks for setting up the blog Michael. Pics of flying waders/waterfowl/seabirds useful for helping to ID/learn/remember! these birds in flight eg large number of shovelers in flight at Far Ings in Feb. Eastrington good location for first arrivals of warblers this morning. Brilliant good view of singing blackcap on arrival in car park. Other highlights (for me) - willow warblers, tree creeper, low flying swallows over the ponds, water vole and woodland show of primroses and violets. Site will be revisited soon. BBC Radio 4 "world on the move" this week reminded listeners that willow warblers arriving from W.Africa weight less than 1oz. Good wheatear pic from Tony spotted on his way home! norma