Thursday, 18 April 2013

A mixed bag today

The Safari didn't go on the beach with the little tots today, they very wisely baled out due to the horrendous that left us a bit of time to peer through the scope. A good decision as the first bird we saw was a Fulmar (137, P2 #55). A few Gannets went through as did a pair of Eiders. A handful of Sandwich Terns were also, like everything else, going south.
Not much was happening at lunchtime which was disappointing but we were able to go to the nature reserve for an hour before our evening meeting. We arrived to hear a Goldcrest (MMLNR #89) and close by a Willow Warbler. Sitting on the bench in the sun was very pleasant; a Cetti's Warbler sang as we scanned the mere. Seven Great Crested Grebes we found.
The wind was from the west - could you guess?
Dive dive dive
We couldn't find our quarry species and became convinced it had done one but then there it was right in front of us - where had that come from?
Arctic Tern on the mere, our first for at least 20 years!!! Not the best pics but hey-how we're happy enough with them...we actually seen far more Ospreys at the nature reserve than this species.

The last pic shows it picking something off the surface. A closer inspection of some of the more duff pics (could they be any worse?) showed it had a very full and bulging crop so there must be something down there.
At the side of one of the hides there is a bit of a wildflower meadow and the Snakes Head Fritillaries are just beginning to open...beautiful...OK they aren't native up this far north but we're very glad we planted them all those years ago.

A good day really and the sun shone warmly in the end.
Many thanks to the volunteer who we 'caught' building a thorny barrier to keep the scrotes out of the Feeding Station too. Nice one ML you're a star.
Where to next? We're in school all day tomorrow learning how much Yr 4 know about Hedgehogs so anything could happen.
In the meantime let us know what's swooping elegantly over your outback.

1 comment:

cliff said...

Thanks for putting me onto the Tern Dave, a new bird for me :-)

Your photos are way better than anything I managed. Nice fritillary photos too.