Thursday, October 3, 2013

Before The Deluge…...

.... some of them were dreamers, and some of them were fools (Jackson Browne). 

But when the weather forecast is as dire as the one for both today and tomorrow, its best to get out there and do some birding before the clouds break. 

Take Cover

Knott End seemed a good bet this morning; a walk alongside the golf course where there are trees sheltered from the south easterlies and there would be an incoming tide to watch. 

There was a little visible migration with birds arriving from the North West then continuing up river or crossing the golf course heading into the breeze. The movement comprised mostly wagtails, 6 definite Pied Wagtails, i.e. the ones that landed prior to heading off south, another 15 overhead “albas”, and 4 Grey Wagtails which spent time along the jetty before flying off south together. At one point a Sparrowhawk appeared from the golf course then chased a few wagtails into the air before giving up and heading across river to Fleetwood. A small movement of Skylarks too, with 10/12 birds arriving from the north and continuing up river. 

A number of Chaffinches, circa 20 arrived from the general direction of the estuary, the birds calling as they dropped into the trees lining the fairway. There’s a good stand of rosehips along here, and I found 6 Greenfinches feeding amongst the bright red fruit. There was a single Wheatear on the shingle below the path plus 2 grounded Meadow Pipits. 

There’s usually one or two Grey Heron patrolling the incoming tideline but today I counted 11 of them spaced neatly along the half mile stretch of the river. Grey Herons are patient and solitary feeders.

Grey Heron

A good selection of waders, with 2400 Oystercatcher, 18 Black-tailed Godwit, 4 Bar-tailed Godwit, 220 Redshank, 140 Curlew and 1 Turnstone. Shelduck are making their way back in some numbers now with a count of 250+, together with the regular 7 Eider ducks at the jetty. 


That’s about it really. I took a slow walk through the quiet trees at Fluke Hall, the best I could manage a Jay, Chiffchaff and a Great-spotted Woodpecker. 

14.30 hours - and the rains came down. Better luck and more news soon tomorrow on Another Bird Blog? Log in soon to find out. 


Kenneth C Schneider said...

Nice walk despite the rain threat. We got out this morning after seeing no rain on the radar and with the hourly forecast saying there was a zero percent chance. Guess, what? The skies opened and we got soaked!

eileeninmd said...

Sorry about the forecast, I will wish you better weather for the weekend. Love the Heron and the pretty Redshank. Happy Birding!

Kay L. Davies said...

I like the reflections of the heron and the redshank, Phil. There are plenty of Great Blue Herons in the tidal river near my home town in British Columbia, and I never tire of seeing them.

Mary Howell Cromer said...

Glad you could get out and get some great shares before those rains come. Our nation has quite a mix for now as well. Winter snow storm in the Midwest/Northwest, where we will head this coming week, then tropical storms in the Southeast as well as high tornadic winds for the plains states...not fun! Take care. BTW, the images you shared are wonderful ;)

Wally Jones said...

You had some decent wader numbers despite the forecast.
Beautiful shot of that Redshank!
Well, with all that rain, the birds aren't likely to be moving much so they'll be waiting for you once the clouds begin to part.

Enjoy your weekend, Phil!

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