Sunday, 16 December 2018

Harrier count

Lade - warm, dry and sunny  - After yesterdays shocker of a day with heavy rain and a cutting easterly wind, this morning could not have been more different with warm sunshine and light airs that even enticed a Small Tortoiseshell butterfly onto the wing by the ponds. Long-tailed Tits, Goldcrest, Chiffchaff, Green and Great Spotted Woodpeckers, Water Rail and Cetti`s Warbler all noted around the willow swamp.
 There was no sign of the Red-necked Grebe for the second day running on north lake; infact, most of the Great Crested Grebes had deserted the pits having probably moved onto the bay taking the Red-necked with them. Pochard numbers were up though with 210 counted but only three Goldeneyes.
  On the bay at low tide hundreds of Curlew, Oystercatcher, Dunlin and Sanderling.
Walland Marsh - Joined CP out on the Marsh this afternoon for the monthly roost count where 11 Marsh Harriers came in to roost, including two cracking adult males, with another half dozen in the general area. We also noted a record count of seven Great Whites and six Little Egrets flying off to roost nearby as the sun went down. Other birds of note included: five Buzzards, a Merlin, hundreds of corvids, Starlings, Lapwings and Golden Plovers, five Snipe, Water Rail, Skylark, Mipit, Cetti`s Warbler, 50 Linnets, three Corn Buntings and six Ravens, plus a large flock of winter thrushes, mainly Fieldfares, at Midley on the way out.

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