Monday, 8 August 2011

Waders continue to drop in


A very autumnly feel to the weather today, with quite strong and cool NW winds and grey, overcast skies for much of the time.........

Another freshly killed Badger I am afraid - this time on the A404 at Hazlemere, by the plantation there at SU 897 958

(from 1100-1300 hours and in the company of Steve Rodwell, Paul Lewis and Steve Carter)

With water levels continuing to dramatically fall due to the water usage in the neighbouring Grand Union Canal, the vast tracts of mud are continuing to pull in passage waders.....

Today's new arrivals were 6 adult summer ICELANDIC BLACK-TAILED GODWITS (initially 5 but then followed by a further single mid-morning), all feeding together in the bay in the far SW of the reservoir right of the hide.

Meanwhile, the juvenile SPOTTED REDSHANK first seen on Saturday remains (see Sally's images above), 6 COMMON GREENSHANKS, 6 GREEN SANDPIPERS and at least 2 Common Sandpipers (9 were noted on 6th).

The remaining roll-call was as follows, with some additional records from Saturday -:

Great Crested Grebe (17)
Sinensis Cormorant (19 roosting)
LITTLE EGRET (21 still present)
Mute Swan (31)
WHOOPER SWAN (both adults still present in the NW corner)
Gadwall (10)
Common Teal (8+, with 18 present on Saturday)
Shoveler (increase of 1 to 8)
Common Buzzard (6)
Red Kite (8)
Eurasian Sparrowhawk (the three young still being fed in the Black Poplar nest by the hide and an additional bird flew south)
HOBBY (successful breeding in the area - probably Mentmore Park - with Steve and I seeing an adult and begging juvenile)
Coot (186 + 74 + 128 = 388 today, but 607 logged on Saturday)
Lapwing (172 today - with 197 present on Saturday)
LITTLE RINGED PLOVER (adult on spit between jetty and Drayton Bank - new arrival)
Black-headed Gull (268 present including 26 juveniles)
Lesser Black-backed Gull (up to 40 in area, including juveniles, some being attracted to fields being ploughed by Cemetery Corner)
Common Tern (just 44 logged, following 82 on Saturday)
Sand Martins (11 migrants)
House Martins (32 today, following the 66 present on Saturday)
Common Starling (11 in area)
Mistle Thrush (party of 29)
Rook and Jackdaw (mixed flock of over 240 birds in fields by the Dry Canal)


Four broods of Tufted Duck this year on Tringford, totalling just 14 ducklings


Another adult HOBBY seen drifting over the ''White Lion'' by the Grand Union Canal bridge in Marsworth village.


Both male and female COMMON REDSTARTS
were still present in a very blustery Incombe Hole whilst on the recently cut fields, two different YELLOW-LEGGED GULLS were located with the Lesser Black-backs - an adult with 60 birds in the main field east of the Beacon car park and a 2nd-winter with just a dozen birds in the field below Steps Hill - both presumably birds found at the weekend by David Bilcock. There was also at least one of the colour-ringed Norwegian Lesser Black-backed Gulls still in the area.


Returned once again to Rowsham mid-afternoon where remarkably no less than 6 COMMON REDSTARTS remain in the area - just what is it that is keeping birds here?

Three adult males remained in the main hedgerow leading SE from the derelict buildings of Ridgway (as far as the chalk mounds), with another NE of there in the corner of the field with the new pile of fence wire and two female/immatures in the vicinity of the dried-up pond literally by the buildings. All of the adult males were still in very good plumage condition and birds continue to be very vocal.

Apart from the redstarts, little other migrant activity, but 22 Swallows still around the farm buildings at the end of Bennett's Lane, a juvenile Pied Wagtail and 8 Red Kites and 19 Linnets attracted to the setaside field now being ploughed up by the farmer.


The female PEREGRINE was in residence on the Council building at 1600 hours.


Bank's Pond, to the south of Great Missendon, was completely dry whilst neighbouring Deep Mill Pond held just 8 Coot, 8 Moorhen and a female Tufted Duck.


In very blustery conditions, migrants included 44 House Martins and the first local SAND MARTIN of the autumn. There was no sign of the recent Common Redstart nor Spotted Flycatchers.

The 4 Great Crested Grebes were still present (juvenile now independently feeding), the 4 Dabchicks, 1 Grey Heron, 62 Coot (including 7 'new' babies fledged in recent days) and an adult Song Thrush still feeding young in a nest.

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