Wednesday, 14 October 2009

As Recommended

Short-eared Owl
Composite of 3 shots of the Peregrine (c) 2009 Aileen Urquhart
Heron (c) 2009 Aileen Urquhart
Kestrel
Underside of Kestrel
Golden Plover
Golden Plover (c) 2009 Maurice Gordon
Golden Plover (c) 2009 Maurice Gordon
Little Egrets
Meadow Pipit (c) 2009 Aileen Urquhart
A local birder recently went to today’s location for the first-time, and was bowled over by it. Would today’s classes follow suit? The am session started at a disadvantage with the tide being well out, but the birds over the saltmarsh more than made up for it. It must have been very wet during the night & this may have been why the Barn Owl was out at 10am as were 2 Short-eared Owls at 11am. When originally spotted they were close to the ground & may have been skirmishing before one flew high with extravagantly slow wing beats before it headed off towards the coast. A Marsh Harrier was also out at the same time as the Barn Owl. Later, the feral pigeons panicked, and a few seconds afterwards a Peregrine gave us a very close fly-past. There must have been thousands of Shelduck on the mud-flats, but the waders were harder to see. The best bird along the drain was a female Stonechat, which gave great views as it hovered for insects. In the afternoon we had great views of a confiding Goldcrest at first, but the tide was flooding in so we saw large movements of Knot & Golden Plover, plus smaller numbers of Dunlin, Grey Plover, Black-tailed Godwits and Greenshanks. Surprisingly, only the Barn Owl and the Marsh Harrier (briefly) put in repeat performances over the saltmarsh. As we were leaving a flock of 8 Little Egrets flew over, and 2 more were down on the marshes.

1 comment:

Mick and Kath Sharpe said...

Hi Michael
Where were you. You sounded to have a cracking day but dont say where you went