Phew! The birding just seems to coming thick and fast at the moment confirming that the combination of high tides and an easterly influence in the weather often makes for some excellent birding. A good old fashioned bird list should be the best way to tell you what you are missing! - Peaks as follows but most birds present on site today. Last three days have seen 22 species of wader. This blog now includes updated sightings to the 2nd Sept.
curlew sandpiper 14, little stint 4, wood sandpiper 1, spotted redshank, 27, greenshank 11, green sandpiper 4, knot 3, Ruff 20+, black tailed godwit 130, ringed plover 10, redshank 52, Dunlin 10+, snipe, 10+, oystercatcher 3, curlew 10+ (fly pasts) and of course a couple of hundred beautiful lapwings(didn't want them to feel left out!). High tide is about 9.30 tommorrow and should be the best time for connecting with all the above. (ps BRING SOME WELLIES JUST IN CASE WE FLOOD). A quick update to add a few whimbrel, turnstone, now passing through and over and grey plover, little ringed plover and common sandpiper today (2nd sept). Tide for Friday will be about 10.30.
Birds of prey have been superb (most of the time!) with plenty of marsh harriers, and regular sightings of 2 peregrines, 3 kestrels, sparrowhawk, merlin, buzzard and 2 hobbies. The last few days have also seen hen harrier, tawny owl, barn owl and long eared owl but your luck has to be in to see these!
WATER RAILS are fairly easy to see at the moment! And a few bearded tits are just starting to show around marshland lagoon, while yellow wagtails continue to please around the lagoon edges or cows if they are near the Ousefleet gate. The last week has seen records of redstart, whinchat, wheatear and cettis warbler as well as a few grey wagtails moving through and a mistle thrush yesterday, never a common bird on the reserve.
And lastly the ever growing hornets nest above the gents toilets (visible from outside may I add!), still seems to be popular so if you are on your first visit in a while then take a look.
Not one but two owls were found in the willows along the trails today. Both were different and they were not a barn owl!
It all started during the middle of the morning when reports came in of a tawny owl near townend so off I go to find this owl. Looking closely in the willows between townend and singleton, I discovered an owl but it was a long-eared owl. Thinking this was the owl, I head back to reception. A little while later, the chaps that reported the tawny owl came back to reception - I showed them a picture of a long-eared owl and they were conviced it was a different bird so I follow them along the track to look at a tawny owl at a different spot. This owl was roosting between first and townend hides.
So just 100 metres apart we had a roosting long-eared owl and a roosting tawny owl.
Here is a photo of that tawny owl:
Next time you visit remember to look in those willows next to the path and you never know what you may see.
A couple of curlew sandpipers this morning and 10 ringed plovers on high tide along with all the other waders mentioned in my last blog! Looking good for the rest of the week with high tides and easterly winds developing which could possibly give rise to a chance of more curlew sands and hopefully some little stints. A few grey wagtails on the move at the moment too.
Hen harrier and merlin also regular into roost at the moment but as with all birds things can be unpredictable so I won't say guarenteed! But you should still hopefully have a good time with all the other birds on site.
Time for a sausage sandwich I think after an early morning start!