Saturday, 31 October 2009

Cetti - Cetti - Cetti

Stop press - Bittern on site this evening, obviously we left far too soon.
The safari set out again on the mission to achieve project impossible! And impossible it proved to be. But all was not lost - a great morning out in the field was had. This morning was the last session of a coordinated vis mig watch that has been running this autum but nothing much was going over, just a few Skylarks, some Reed Buntings bounced in and bounced out again, a couple of Meadow Pipits and a Grey Wagtail going the 'wrong' way. In the bushes around the site there were a few Blackbirds but not as many as perhaps we expected and we could only find a single Fieldfare and a handful of Redwings. This Woodpigeon was asleep at the top of an Elder bush, until it heard the camera's autofocus beep a few more times and it woke up. Tired migrant or just having a lazy Saturday morning in the warm sunshine?Make the most of it crap weather returneth tomorrow in the form of wild wind and torrential rain - that'll make a refreshing change!
Robins, on the other hand, were particularly noticeable, we had over thirty before we had gone more than a hundred yards through the scrub. One was extremely confiding.

Didn't notice it at the time but it appears to have a few primaries out of place on its right wing.
We mosied on up to the viewing platform, not a great lot of excitement out on the water, all the usual suspects but with the light in our faces there was little point grilling the gulls from here. Two Little Grebes were pick of the bunch. It's quite a while since we've seen these at this site, should visit more often! But did get a first ever photo of one.
The Cetti's Warbler fired up a quick mega-blast of song...YES that'll do nicely. We decided to hang around to see if it was going to do it again or maybe pick up a flucky Bittern flying over the reedbed. After a few minutes CR turned up. (Good to meet you at last after admiring your photos for some time).
What CR told me was awesome - he and PE had been listening to TWO Cetti's Warblers only a few minutes earlier in the opposite corner of the reserve! So that makes THREE on site, all males - - are there any females??? The habbo here is ideal for them to breed if only the winterers would stick.
We trotted back the way we came and heard one of those two fire up half way along the embankment. Listening for the other by the bridge was unsuccessful; so gulls it was. A good sized flock was on the water but sadly nothing exciting was hiding in their midst. But while we were checking them out the third Cetti's broke in to song. better still it flitted across the gap in the reeds in front of the hide. We SAW it!!! Three heard one seen = an excellent day.
Worra lorra geese, as Cilla would say. Best part of 3000 I guess settled in the fields behind the barn to the east, wonder if they were all Pink Feet or was there a Greenland White Front lurking in a with them.
A Migrant Hawker was still buzzing about and a Red Admiral was seen at Base Camp.
Where to next? Somewhere dry I hope looking at the forecast.
In the meantime let us know what's turned up in unprecedented numbers in your outback.


Warren Baker said...

A good visit at last dave, well done on those cettis, I hope they stick around to breed !

Monika said...

As always, I appreciate your bird photos! I particularly like that third shot of the robin.