Monday, August 4, 2014

Forget The Weekend

If the rain of both Friday and Saturday was bad, Sunday’s was far worse, so no bird watching until Monday. At last today there was a half decent list of birds and so a little news to relate. 

On the way to Glasson Dock there’s a tiny, reed-fringed pool where a Grey Heron often stands. Not today, there was a Red Fox instead, so I whizzed the car round the mini-roundabout hoping to park up for a photo. Just as the car slowed almost to a halt the fox melted into the hedgerow. 

At the dock a Kingfisher flew to the favoured Noggers Ark ropes and then just as quickly disappeared towards the estuary without taking the plunge. 


A Common Tern was fishing the dock waters but I didn’t see it fly off towards Conder Green with the catch as he usually does. When I looked at Conder Green later there was no sign of the female so I reasoned that the sometimes torrential rain of the weekend caused the nest to fail at almost hatching point. 

Maybe the poor weekend weather cleared out some of the recent Swallows too because I counted less than a hundred today feeding across the water, some of them resting on various parts of various boats. When the Swallows leave the local deck hands will have to get cracking with the old spit 'n' polish to clean up their shiny boat fittings. 




There were 2 Grey Wagtails flying around the moored boats looking for insects, so restless that they hardly settled at all and I don’t know where they ended up. On and near the water, 55 Mallards, 15 Tufted Ducks, 22 Coot and 1 Cormorant.

Glasson Dock

At first glance Conder Green at high tide appeared very quiet whereby a certain amount of perseverance and waiting for the tide to drop was required in order to find any birds. I thought there might be 2 Spotted Redshanks but then decided it was just a single bird doing a full circuit of the creeks. It helped that it was an adult bird now in almost complete winter dress with just a hint of the black plumage of the summer months. Below is the best picture I could get of the distant and wary “shank”, however it does show the remnants of black adult plumage. 

Spotted Redshank

There were definitely 3 Greenshanks, all three feeding virtually together, almost running through the shallow water with the distinctive side-to-side sweep-feed action that Greenshanks employ. 


There were 6 Pied Wagtails and single Grey Wagtail here too; at one point the Grey Wagtail walked along the mid-creek bare tree that I’ve seen a Kingfisher use recently. Good numbers of Redshank scattered through the creeks and beyond the bridge with a conservative count of 190 individuals. Just 3 Common Sandpipers, 5 Curlew, 3 Dunlin, 12 Oystercatchers and 40 Lapwing with herons represented by 2 Little Egret and 2 Grey Heron. 

 Grey Heron

Wildfowl - just 15 Shelduck, 2 Wigeon, 2 Little Grebe. 

It was certainly a weekend to forget and a relief to get outdoors today. New news and more birds quite soon on Another Bird Blog.

Linking today to Stewart's World Bird Wednesday in Australia.


EG CameraGirl said...

I'm glad the weather cleared up so you could get out to do some birding. I'm sad that many birds are already changing into their winter feathers. I guess summer really is passing by quickly.

Janet Shaw said...

Great Shots!

eileeninmd said...

Phil, sorry your weekend being a wash out.. It was much the same here.. Cool shot of the Kingfisher and I love the cute swallows.. A nice outing.. Happy Birding!

carol l mckenna said...

You always find gorgeous birds! Great shots for OWT ~

artmusedog and carol ( A Creative Harbor

David Gascoigne said...

Torrential rain seems to be the norm recently. Here in Ontario deluges have been experienced all over the province over the last few days. Here in Waterloo we had about 9omm in two hours. What happened to the kind of gentle drizzle we used to have when it was pleasant to grab an umbrella and go for a walk? Great birds though, Phil. As you have pointed out in the past, there is nothing quite like covering your own patch.

Gunilla Bäck said...

I love the swallows! I'd happily send our hot and dry weather to you if we could get some rain. :)

Bob Bushell said...

Beautiful images, especially the Spotted Redshank, superb. Oh I forgot, the Kingfisher, is the greatest.

Adam Jones said...

That a superb Greenshank and really good looking Spotshank too.

Margaret Adamson said...

Love the shot of the Swallows on the linked wird.

Chris Rohrer said...

I've noticed the swallows all taking off and gathering before they make their next big move....which will be in the next month I suspect. I already see a flurry of Purple Martins gathering which is always the sign that things are going to change:) Wonderful photos and I look forward to your news....sounds rather like you're excited:)

Marie said...

Sorry you missed the fox, but I love the little Kingfisher. The swallows too are awesome, especially that facial close-up!

Stewart M said...

Great shots. I remeber getting very excited the first time I managed to work out I was looking at a spotted r'shank.

I spoke to the owner of the ill car - and he was English!

Cheers - Stewart M - Melbourne

BumbleVee said...

I like the Kingfisher...has a cute shape...

BumbleVee said...

I think I lost my comment... but, anyway...I was saying I like the shape of the Kingfisher....

Arija said...

Wish I could get just 10% of your sightings and wonderful shots and you call it a bad weekend!

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