Sunday, 14 October 2018

Still no water

Not a lot to report really as the lists are stuck where they were and there has not been a lot of rain. We managed 21 species at WOW including two buzzards and two ravens. Kinnegar added a few more including a count of over 170 red-breasted mergansers. Mallard and shelduck both flew over the reserve, had a look, and flew on.There was the usual curlew roost which contained some oystercatchers and a few black-tailed godwit, otherwise it was same old, same old as the following photos show.

Buzzard eating a meal, possibly a moorhen.

Curlew and oystercatchers

Resident hooded crow


Raven with magpies in attendance

Flotilla of moorhens on the mud

Every dot is a moorhen

Sometimes there are no moorhens to see and then gradually they appear out of the reeds and spread over the mud. We still have 80+ around the reserve, but then they get spooked and dive for cover. These 40+ are down to the right of the observation room. There are another 40+ over to the left and quite a few on the far side where Hide 2 is. A visit at the minute guarantees moorhens, hooded crows, magpies and wood pigeons, anything else is a bonus or a flyover. If the feeders are operational we can add goldfinch, greenfinch, chaffinch, plus blue, coal and great tit. As usual it is worth checking Kinnegar lagoon and shore, this week we had knot, 2 sandwich tern, bar-tailed godwit and teal. It has been a trifle damp of late so hopefully water levels will start to rise - watch this space!!

The coastal path has not produced much, but then there isn't much left to add. The high tide roost at Seacliff Road gave good views of waders but I decided not to bring the scope and camera as I could
not be bothered carrying it - bad decision - as high tide and bright sun behind me made conditions perfect for pictures. The following are taken with an ipod, think what a good camera wuld have done with ringed plover, turnstone, purple sandpiper, redshank, and oystercatcher all perched up on the rocks. Throw in a great-crested grebe close in at Strickland's Bay and I could have had a field day. This was the first time I have ever seen a grebe here and the first time I have seen one so close in. Normally they are scoped somewhere in Ballyholme Bay at the outer limits of the patch. Note to self is to look for a high tide and a good day and bring the equipment!!

Ringed plovers

Ringed plovers and turnstone


There's the grebe


Nice gannet, very close in to the shore.

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