I wasn't too hopeful about birding this morning as early and mid-June can be hard going. It's when when migration stops, breeding adults stay glued to nests and generally keep a low profile until their nestlings emerge. In the end the morning proved quite productive by way of a few new pics and another Lapwing chick to add to the tally of recent weeks.
Conder Green was first stop and where a good selection wildfowl awaited in the shapes of 2 Pochard, 2 Wigeon, 2 Teal, 16 Tufted Duck and a single Great-crested Grebe. Waders were the expected ones of Oystercatchers and Redshanks, with no sign of Little Ringed Plovers, an omission which doesn't mean they are not around but simply out of sight and keeping quiet, the latter if true an unusual occurrence for LRPs.
Passerines were sparse here with a singing Sedge Warbler, 2 Reed Buntings and a Song Thrush also in song with flyover Linnet and Goldfinch in ones and twos. There seemed to be good numbers of House Martins zipping around River Winds, with a fly-through of a Sand Martin perhaps from the tiny colony at Cockerham. More worrying is the lack of Swallows I count at the moment; following a couple of poor breeding seasons, their normal losses in wintering quarters and then on migration I fear their population is on the low side for now. Such are the risks of their strategy of summering in the Northern Hemisphere.
It was Pilling next for the compulsory walk to Fluke and back, accompanied by the cries of Lapwings, Redshanks and Oystercatchers. Yes, the Oystercatchers definitely have young now, but hidden away in a sileage field, the adults providing a running commentary and all the time trying to lead me in the opposite direction to their chicks.
There was yet another single Lapwing chick with a pair of adults, and from the size of it I thought it could be one and the same bird from Friday. But no, when I went to where the chick crouched it turned out to be a new one with the flight feathers half-grown.
Five Grey Herons today as breeding birds and new young leave their inland haunts for the coast. Two Little Egrets was more difficult to explain unless they too have completed their breeding season. A single Greenshank again today out towards the tideline.
Carrion Crows have hatched and fledged young on Hi-Fly's set-aside area - now there is a surprise. The young crow won't remain so approachable for long and will surely learn to flee the sound of gunfire.
Otherwise things were quiet although a dashing Peregrine gave a brief but brilliant flying display while attempting but failing to catch a feral pigeon. A good try - hard luck Peg, but thanks for ending my morning in such spectacular fashion.
Linking today to Stewart's Photo Gallery.