Happy New Year everyone! We hope you had a fantastic holiday – we certainly did with lots of wildlife to see around the reserve.
Plenty of our regular birds have been seen including long tailed tits, little owl, redwing, fieldfare, reed bunting, gadwall, teal and wigeon and Perry Lane was in glorious colour yesterday as around half a dozen male bullfinches vied for the attention of a solitary female. There are scores of waders on the foreshore each day, including curlew, knot and dunlin as well as our frequently-seen birds of prey, kestrel, sparrowhawk and the magnificent marsh harrier.
The starlings may have largely finished their murmurations at Newport Wetlands for the season, but for anyone wanting to see large flocks swirling through the air, there’s one species that has stepped up. Flocks of hundreds upon hundreds of lapwing have been circling and twisting through the sky right across the reserve – and you don’t have to wait until dusk!
Short eared owl was seen on Wednesday near the lighthouse, Cetti’s warbler have been singing away in the reeds, golden plover and grey plover have been sighted, as well as black tailed godwit and water rail.
The UK’s smallest falcon was been seen across the reserve in recent days. Only about 1,300 pairs of merlin nest in the UK though their population is recovering following a crash in the late 20th century. They largely breed in upland moorland but at this time of year are often found near coasts.
But this week’s treat comes courtesy of a group of redshank. Although not uncommon on the reserve, they are rarely seen in the Uskmouth reedbeds. But yesterday several could be seen in front of the hide, giving visitors a spectacular view.
So if you want to work off a bit of Christmas pud as well as see some fantastic wildlife, you know where to come!