What a great day for wading birds today. The water levels on the Scrape are looking great at the moment, and the waders are loving it! Both West Hide and East Hide are very productive, as are the pools at the end of the seasonal wader trail. Last night's rain clearly grounded a few birds, but most of the waders are on the move, so it's difficult to predict exactly what's going to be in any given location. Here's a few highlights from today so far:
Sanderling by Jon Evans
It's not just waders either. Several wheatears and yellow wagtails are in the dunes and on the levels. One particularly obliging wheatear favours the area just north of the sluice. A late cuckoo was in the dunes this morning and a late swift was seen yesterday. Whitethroat and garden warbler were in the sluice bushes at lunchtime. A kingfisher was at the sluice this morning.
Other reports today include hobby showing well at Bittern Hide, bittern seen at Island Mere, the escaped bar-headed goose still on Island Mere, little egrets in the konik field, 500+ teal now on the Scrape and marsh harriers over the reedbed.
Don't forget that due to the Environment Agency Sea Defence project, there is no access to North Wall until February, so the walk to East hide and back is longer than usual, via the sluice. Therefore, if time is short I recommend visiting West Hide and Bittern Hide, or West Hide and the Sluice. If you've got longer then both East Hide and the wader trail are worth the walk. Look out too for a seasonal reedbed trail that should open next week.