Friday, April 22, 2016

Monday morning hangover

It was never going to be as good as Sunday. Nevertheless, some observations worth recording.

First to Ferrybridge at 7:30ish. Nothing much on the water (8 Oystercatcher and a few Sandwich Terns) so I climbed up the shingle to join local watcher S. He effortlessly picked out 10 Common Scoter and a Fulmar out on the sea. Portland Harbour was millpond-flat, and we picked up 2 Great Northern Divers, another Common Scoter, and in the far corner a Black Throated Diver. Even at this distance it had that snake-like appearance, and was clearly still in winter plumage.

S pointed out some hares and a pair of Ravens further up Chesil beach. The Ravens indulged in a spot of pecking; one bird stood motionless, and the other gently pecked round the first bird's head, presumably taking nits or ticks. we've all seen chimpanzees do it, I haven't heard of birds doing this before though.

On to Portland. It was quiet, but birds started to come through; male Redstart, Whitethroat, Stonechat, a few Willow chiffs. A peregrine appeared twice, once taking a small bird and sliding off over the cliffs. Peregrine was the commonest raptor of the weekend in terms of views.

Finally Lodmoor in search of a Wood Sandpiper.  The water level was high, and there was some wader activity on a pool in the centre; a summer plumage Black Tailed Godwit, and something that could have been the target bird flew in but was out of sight when it landed. Oh well. There was still enough to see - 2 Marsh Harrier, a Wheatear, a White Wagtail, 2 Lesser Whitethroats including one singing out in the open, Cettis close enough to touch. A nice way to finish the weekend.

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