Thursday, 2 April 2009

Golden Ending

Whooper Swan - to see radio antennae left click
(c) 2009 Jackie Dawson
Record shot of Little Egrets (c) 2009 Jackie Dawson
Golden Plover
All remaining pictures for this post (c) 2009 Michael Flowers

DJ3/'Edmund' (right) & friend
Record shot of Mistle Thrush
First of the Year?

The weather was pretty grim for the final sessions of the pre-Easter term: misty, drizzly, cold and finally overcast and windy. Despite this the birds did us proud. There were over 1000 Golden Plovers, and 4 Little Egrets (the highest figure I've seen at this location), there were 2 different Kingfishers, 2 Whooper Swans (one with ring leg number DJ3 & in Jackie's pics you can see one of these birds has a radio tracking device!), 3+ Ruff, 2 Curlew, plenty of Snipe, Lapwing & Redshank. In the morning the Snipe were very active and we could just hear their drumming above the throb of the factories. The Meadow Pipits weren't to be outdone and in the morning launched into their song-flights before parachuting down. Skylarks and Pied Wagtails also put in an appearance, but it's the Golden Plovers which will stay in the memory, especially as many of them were in their striking breeding plumage. A fitting uplifting ending to the grimmest term weather-wise in the last 6 years. Hoping for better weather (surely) next term!
PS Message from Ken:
I've found "our" swan DJ3, aka Edmund!! He's part of the WWT swan tracking programme. So the antenna wasn't imagined. You can see him on He's second from left in the gallery. The one tucked under someone's arm. Happy birding and bon voyage to Edmund!

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