Sunday 17 August 2014

Montagu`s Harrier

Lade - cool, cloudy, w 5 - 1100hrs - A late start due to one thing and another. We walked the local patch where the strong wind put the mockers on any migrant passerines apart from a few Yellow Wagtails and Sand Martins. However, a Water Rail with four chicks out in the open feeding amongst rotting water weed was a real treat. More Dabchick broods were on the water in the shelter of the willow swamp and a Marsh Harrier struggled into the wind over the airport fields.

                                Juvenile Montagu`s Harrier, Cockles Bridge

Cockles Bridge - Just as the afternoon was petering out a call came through from PB regarding a juvenile Monty`s type harrier over the corn fields opposite Cockles Bridge. A heavy shower had grounded the bird in a ditch close to the road and by the time I arrived it was still on the deck. However, after a ten minute wait up it came and we were treated to reasonable, but brief, views as it quartered the corn fields. A typical orangey breasted juvenile Montys/Pallid type, but with no obvious neck collar I reckoned it to be a juvenile Montagu`s Harrier, although future analysis of pics by PB and DW could prove otherwise, and of course further protracted views.
PS: It was later confirmed as a Monty`s; for some great pics see

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