Tuesday, 6 August 2013

Tringford water levels are remarkably low

After twitching Alan Gardiner's Tyttenhanger DUNLIN (which was still present on the spit incidentally when I left at 2pm), I returned to TRING RESERVOIRS to complete my counts of the smaller three reservoirs.
TRINGFORD RESERVOIR is at the lowest I have seen it for some years and very reminiscent of when I have recorded Spotted Crake there; it is looking exceptional for passage waders. Dave Hutchinson and I had a summer-plumaged ICELANDIC BLACK-TAILED GODWIT feeding on the flattened area of mud at the far corner from around 1600 hours, the bird flying off at 1738 when spooked by three Red Fox cubs playing on the bank. A total of 4 GREEN SANDPIPERS was feeding on the wettest mud in the far corner and resident species included 7 Grey Heron, the family party of 8 Mute Swans, a single Shoveler, three broods of Tufted Duck totalling 28 young (including 2 very pale individuals with one party of 6 ducklings) and 38 Coot. The 7 Little Egrets were also present.
On neighbouring STARTOP'S END RESERVOIR, the celebrity first-summer female COMMON SCOTER was present for its third day, showing extremely well not far from the car park, as well as the juvenile LITTLE RINGED PLOVER (also present for its third day). A pair of Great Crested Grebes has built a new nest on one of the algae bunds.

The first sign of migration on the Hills involved a COMMON REDSTART and LESSER WHITETHROAT in Inkombe Hole, the former proving very elusive and lingering in the bushes by the orange-rolling slope; 3 Bullfinches also.

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