Monday, 17 August 2015

They do like to be beside the seaside.....

       Having followed the exploits of the last week from the Austrian Alps - where the quantity of birds if not the quality makes the 'Stow seem like Falsterbo in September - I was keen to catch up with some migration. A short visit yesterday saw me get Greenshank on my patch year list when one flew off the top of Lockwood and  seemed to land in the overflow channel where Paul (on his second attempt) and I caught up with it later. But I missed a Whinchat which disappeared almost as soon as Paul discovered it as he walked up the Lockwood.

     So it was back today with the hope of re-finding it. What I saw instead out of the corner of my eye as I was tracking along the Lockwood shore looking for waders was an orangy bill among a flock of Coot. A quick double take and I realised I was not hallucinating but watching a male and two female type Common Scoter - the first for the year on the patch. It was not long before Paul joined me and we wondered whether it was a family party given the different colouring of the females and the way they stayed so closed to each other.

         The Scoter were still in residence when I returned mid-afternoon having failed to find little other sign of migration in a long walk round the reservoirs - disappointing given what had been seen  at Wanstead. In fact, there seemed to be far fewer Whitethroats and Blackcaps around than yesterday which was also the case with Sand and House Martins over No 5. So I was pleased at least to see a single Wheatear on the east bank of Lockwood which had dropped in during the day.

           DB @porthkillier

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