Saturday, June 22, 2013

Rain Stopped Play

There was time for a quick look at Pilling and Conder Green early on but when the wind and rains arrived I was back home for a late tea-and-toast breakfast. Too soon maybe as the sky then cleared leaving a bright but very windy and still showery day.

Near Lane Ends were a good number of post-breeding Lapwings, 25+ adults together with a small number of obvious juveniles, spiky-crowned and brightly edged feathers, but birds now well on the way to adulthood. I checked out a pair of Oystercatchers which seemed to be doing the business again after the original nest was rolled by Hi-Fly's farming operations; three eggs again in the sprouting maize crop so the oyks should be fine this time providing the Carrion Crows or mammal predators don't intervene. 

Lapwing juvenile

Oystercatcher nest

Oystercatcher

I stopped briefly at the plantation where 2 Reed Warblers, a Blackcap and a Reed Bunting were in song and 2 Grey Herons out on the marsh. 

At Conder Green the cool, windy conditions meant good numbers of hirundines and Swifts were dashing about the hedgerow again to give counts of 25+ Swift, 20+ House Martin, 15 Swallow and 6 Sand Martin. Late June can be when waders begin returning to coastal haunts and there seemed to be higher numbers of Redshank today with 30+ noted, although just 2 Black-tailed Godwit and 1 Curlew was consistent with recent sightings here. Fifteen Oystercatcher and 6 Lapwing was also normal. 

Wildfowl - 3 Wigeon, a Shelduck with 5 small chicks, 14 Tufted Duck and the unseasonal Goldeneye again. The origins of the latter is a matter of some speculation as Goldeneyes normally feature in this area between October and March, the likelihood being that this immature male did not return north last autumn. Immature males do not attain their full black and white male plumage until their second winter. Whatever, the bird certainly appears wild enough and loafs about the pool with the tufties.

Goldeneye

Another returnee this morning was a Little Egret feeding amongst the Redshank and Mallards in the Conder channel. Unfortunately our UK Little Egrets are not as accommodating towards photographers as the species is in other parts of the world, in this case Fuerteventura. 

Little Egret

Passerines this morning - 2 Tree Sparrow, 1 Pied Wagtail, 2 Greenfinch, 4 Goldfinch. 

Another Bird Blog links today to Camera Critters and Anni's Blogspot .

12 comments:

eileeninmd said...

Another great post on your outing, Phil! I love the Lapwings and the neat Oystercatcher. The Little Egret is pretty! I have been reading my listserve and notice that a lot of ducks have been sighted lately. Not sure what's up with that. Awesome photos, happy birding!

Frank said...

Fingers crossed for the OC's.

Wet and very windy down here so decided to catch up on a few chores.

TexWisGirl said...

all birds i don't get to see here. :)

Isidro Ortiz said...

Estupendas capturas Phil.Un abrazo

HOOTIN ANNI said...

Terrific!! Phil, you always have such interesting posts, and fantastic bird sightings! Love the lapwing today best. But of course, I love birds...period.

Anni @ I'd Rather B Birdin' [and] Hootin' Anni

Gary said...

Great series!! I still like the lapwing the best!! Boom & Gary of the Vermilon River, Canada.

Gunilla Bäck said...

Lovely birds as usual.

Carole M. said...

more superb photographs; love the lapwing especially Phil. Hard to judge the weather sometimes can be very contrary. Here at the moment is cold, grey and wet.

Mary Howell Cromer said...

That Goldeneye is really superb Phil and too bad he was left behind, but fortunate for you to view and get such a splendid capture. The juvie Lapwing is turning into quite a beauty as well. The Oystercathcer nest and eggs reminds me very much of the Killdeer eggs and nest here. Best of good fortunes for all. Tea and toast...a bit early here, yet sounds good to me. I have some great local Italian Honeybee honey freshly gathered in to add to my Lavender tea. Happy week~

Chris said...

Looks like you are getting the same weather as we are... Crappy spring with lost of rain.... Funny to see this little nice egret at the end of your post knowing that it is a big year for them over here... Three have already been spotted in the whole country!

Ramón Suárez said...

Buenísimas fotos Phil. La avefría y la garceta son buenísimas.
Un abrazo!!

Choy Wai Mun said...

Phil, a good series of images despite the weather. You are right about the Little Egret - it is one of the most confiding waterbirds here in Malaysia.

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