Sightings for week ending 12/03/2017

Its been a busy week down Farlington this week. Lots of Bearded Tits, a Marsh Harrier, Kingfisher, Barn Owl, tons of Curlew, Brent Geese and Shelduck and still a Short Eared Owl or two. There was a leucistic duck by the building Tuesday which I think was a Gadwal, despite being positioned next to a Pintail.

Today was particularly gloomy but there were 500+ Dunlin feeding on the mudflats west of the marsh with a few Black Tailed Godwits and Redshank mixed in. There was also one solitary Avocet roosting on the lake. I haven’t seen any Avocet around for a little while, despite the high numbers earlier in the year.

Spring really descended on Thursday. We were working in tshirts at Swanwick Lakes, basking in the warmth on the edge of the lakes. Whilst we were sat at lunch we had a Brimstone, Peacock, Comma and a Red Admiral pass by! These are the first butterflies that I have seen this year.

I think Saturday will be the better day this weekend and so will be a good opportunity to see the last of the waders and wildfowl. The numbers have certainly dropped significantly in the last couple of weeks and it will be sensible to keep an eye out for the first of the summer migrants. Reports of Wheatears and House/Sand Martins have been arriving across the country for a week or so now!

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5 thoughts on “Sightings for week ending 12/03/2017

  1. Hi Chris, out of interest, what made you think it was a Gadwall? Have a feeling I’ve seen the same bird a couple of times (unless there’s others?!), so curious & trying to work out what it is.

    • Hi Amy, it retained some of the dark patterning on the back. It was the right size for a Gadwall and lacked the pointed tail for a Pintail. That’s what I thought any way but havn’t studied it long and hard. Let me know if you think otherwise.

      • Cheers Chris, an interesting bird! In photos I have, I thought it had some feathers that looked ok for Pintail, and in the original photo I have from a few years back, it looks more Pintail-like, so I assumed it was the same bird which I suppose it may not be. Thinking about it, you might be right about the tail, so I’m not sure.

      • Hi Amy, it cruised passed me the other day really close and I got a good look at it. Think it is actually a Pintail. Close up you can see the tail but it isn’t obvious.

      • Aha, mystery solved! In that case, I think it is the bird we had on a WeBS count there in 2014 as back then the tail was a bit more obvious from what I remember, although it still confused us. Must be a rather rare sighting!

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