Thursday, 30 April 2009

Thursday 30th April 09 sightings

What a difference a day makes! Dry, sunny and warm late morning on the reserve and plenty of birds singing. At least 6 Skylarks singing and finally got brief glimpses of Reed and Sedge Warblers singing in the Red River Ditch (95 and 96 respectively on the SGS Yearlist). The reserve has a lot of water on it at the moment with a large open area at the northern end. This held ten Whimbrel today. The Whitethroat was again singing from brambles near the entrance and just three male and a female Wheatear were evident.

Wednesday, 29 April 2009

Reserve Year list.......

With the new addition to my family due in the next 13 days aswell as other commitments i decided to do my birding more local to home this year and challenged myself with a St Gothian Sands NR Yearlist. Im counting species that are seen inside and from within the boundary of the Reserve, that being the road to the south, The Red River to the east, the sand bank to the north and the caravan park fence boundary to the west. Ive managed to miss some good birds this year already, not least the Snowy Owl! Didn't catch up with the snow buntings either but having totted up the years total so far i was surprised to find i'd seen 94 species on or from the reserve. Common Whitethroat and Whimbrel were new additions over the last few days.

Wednesday 29th April 2009

David King had a walk round the reserve this morning and saw Whitethroat, Bar-tailed Godwit, Whimbrel, Peregrine and two Sedge Warblers (along Red River near Sandsifter). I had a walk in the rain (again) this evening. There were certainly less Wheatears than my previous visit with only two males and a female noted. Six Whimbrel were still on the reserve tho mobile and a Common Sandpiper was on the Red river side of the main Pool. Finally caught up with the Whitethroat singing near the entrance gate as i left.

Monday, 27 April 2009

Snowy Owl Video

Heres a link to video footage taken by John Chapple of the Snowy Owl recently on the Reserve.

Todays Sightings

Spent an hour and a half on the reserve this evening in the cold and squally showers in the hope of a Whiskered Tern dropping in! No such luck but i did count six male and five female Wheatear around the ponds. A Fulmar flew over the north end and out to sea and there were five Whimbrel on the beach. Birds of prey were evident with the Buzzard pair constantly around, a Peregrine flew over and a superb male Sparrowhawk shot across the main pool and alighted on the northernmost bank, the Sand Martins remained totally oblivious!

Monday, 20 April 2009

Snowy Visits Reserve

A pretty uneventful morning on the reserve soon turned into a damn good one for Tim Twiggs yesterday. The immature Snowy Owl (Zennor bird or another??) was sat on the mound overlooking the reedy pool to the north of the main pool! After a couple of hours the bird flew north over Godrevy Head and despite extensive searching could not be relocated. A great find by Tim and addition to the reserve list.

I missed it and will be changing my mobile phone very soon, bloody technology!

Friday, 17 April 2009

Evening Visit

I decided on a late evening visit on the patch tonight, mainly to avoid the dog-walkers. How wrong could i be! Why does it take 5 people to walk one dog? Or the other extreme where one person owns five or more bloody dogs! They are never on leads and their owners talk to each other as if they are 3 miles away from one another. Not suprisingly most of the birds were content to remain within the relative safety and tranquility of the fenced off areas. Thanks God for fenced off areas!
Only two pairs of Shelduck were on the main pool this evening, keeping a watchful eye on a couple of Common Buzzards nearby. The Mallard chicks seem to be happy on the westernmost pools and two moorhen were on the bottom small pool (with the reed bed). Over 50 Sand Martins and a dozen or so Swallows were over the reserve and three Wheatears were around the westernmost pools. Really must think up some permanent names for the different areas. Main Pool should remain as such, but anyone ideas for the other areas?

Wednesday, 15 April 2009

Recent Reports

Sam Williams saw four Wheatears on the reserve on the 14th and managed the great shot shown here. He also reports lots of Sand Martins and eight Swallows.

Monday, 13 April 2009

Weekend Sightings

Terry Hasdell found a Common Sandpiper on the main pool on Sunday and Sam Williams reports plenty of Sand Martins, Swallows and of course, Shelduck on Saturday. Thanks to Sam for the great photo of Sand Martin in flight.

Tuesday, 7 April 2009

Recent Sightings

Sunday 29 March - Shelduck 14 on main pool, Northern Wheatear 1 female, Sand Martin 8, Swallow 5+, Moorhen 2, Little Grebe 1 on main pool (Tim Twiggs)
Monday 30th March - 2 Swallows this afternoon, hawking over the big pool with at least 12 Sand Martins. My first for the year here. 6 Sandwich Terns flying past the mouth of the Red River (D.Jenkins)

Tuesday 31st March - (PM) - 40+ House Martins, Swallow, Chiffchaff, 4 Shelduck, 2 Mallard, Little Grebe, Herring Gull, Buzzard, Meadow Pipit, Dunnock, Blackbird, Robin, Wren, Goldfinch and 8 Magpies. (Chris Yates)