Wednesday, 24 October 2012

Twirling Moustachios

As we crossed the Humber Bridge the fog was so thick, I'm sure most people wondered if we were going to see anything.

One of the first birds we could discern was a very confiding Grey Wagtail, which was catching insects alongside the tiny creek leading to the hide.  Throughout the whole walk the air was punctuated by the croaks of flying Snipe.  Suddenly all the dabbling Teal took to the air and a long winged raptor could just be made out through the mist.  The wings looked too thin & narrow for a Marsh Harrier, so a Hen Harrier was the most probable answer.  There were plenty of Reed Buntings and Tree Sparrows in the bushes, whilst on the mud there were over a thousand Golden Plovers, plus Shelduck, a few Ruff, Curlew, Redshank, Black-tailed Godwit, Dunlin, Herons, a single Spotted Redshank, and a Little Egret.

When we took the walk along the gravel path to the other hide it wasn't long before we heard some pinging and a pair of Bearded Tits showed very well, and these were lifers for about half the group.  On the return journey we came across 2 pairs together, and eventually Maggie was able to get a picture of a pair side-by-side.  Unfortunately, although they could be heard in the distance in the afternoon they refused to reappear.  The light was a lot better in the afternoon, and even though the Grey Wagtail was relocated the loss of the Bearded Tit was a large hole, which couldn't be filled.

Bearded Tits [male left] (c) 2012 Maggie Bruce
 Grey Wagtail
 Golden Plovers
 How Blots are Smuggled into the Landscape

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