Saturday, 3 November 2018

Radipole Lake RSPB - 01/11/2018.


After hearing that the Lesser Legs had relocated back again to Radipole Lake I thought I would give it a go. A pre dawn arrival on site and I headed to the area of the North screen, an area of the reserve I hadn't been to previously. 

As I arrived it was pretty quiet with no sign of the Lesser Legs. I decided to give it twenty minutes and then if still no sign I would check out the rest of the reserve before heading to Lodmoor. A couple of Great White Egrets were present and showed well, A male Marsh Harrier flew through close and low with both Cetti's Warblers and Bearded Reedlings ever vocal. A female Sparrowhawk passed by low over the reed bed with a few Snipe taking flight but still no sign of the Lesser Legs. 

It was becoming a nice morning and the surrounding scenery was nice and bird activity was improving so I thought I would hang on a bit longer and then just at the thirty minute mark I heard the Lesser Legs calling in the distance and then picked it up flying in low and dropping down. The light was ok at the start but as the morning grew brighter the light became harsher and the Lesser Legs became back-lit and silhouetted.  

At around 11.00 the Lesser Legs, took flight, circling the North marsh and landed directly on the front edge of the marsh in front of the North screen, where it remained for around twenty seconds, allowing just enough time to fire off a few shots before it flew up high and headed down through the reserve towards the information centre where it appeared to drop down. 

I decided to head back checking any marshy areas on route but with no sign of the Lesser legs, however  Bearded Reedlings were heard "pinging" at several locations. 

I needed to get back as I had planned to meet J on Forest for "Roost O'clock" where we were lucky to see a male Hen Harrier  twice before third and finally dropping in to roost. As the last glimmers of daylight closed in I realised it had been a full dawn to dusk day in the field but at this time of the year it is only part time hours at best. 

View from North Screen  - Radipole Lake RSPB reserve, Weymouth, Dorset - November 2018.
Male Marsh Harrier - Radipole Lake RSPB reserve, Weymouth, Dorset - November 2018.
View from North Screen  - Radipole Lake RSPB reserve, Weymouth, Dorset - November 2018
Juv Lesser Lesser-yellow Legs - Radipole Lake RSPB reserve, Weymouth, Dorset - November 2018.
Juv Lesser Lesser-yellow Legs - Radipole Lake RSPB reserve, Weymouth, Dorset - November 2018.



Great White Egret - Radipole Lake RSPB reserve, Weymouth, Dorset - November 2018.
Great White Egret - Radipole Lake RSPB reserve, Weymouth, Dorset - November 2018.
Black tailed Godwit - Radipole Lake RSPB reserve, Weymouth, Dorset - November 2018.

Tuesday, 30 October 2018

New Forest National Park - Recent Observations.

Dawn - Sunrise on Forest October 2018

Had a few visits out on forest recently with the best bits being:

Little Stint - 1 1st Winter - FTL - Pennington Marsh 26th October
Knot - 1 FTL - Pennington Marsh - 26th October 1 
Brent Goose - 40+ over FTL Pennington Marsh 26th October
Golden Plover - 36 - FTL Pennington Marsh 26th October

Jack Snipe - 1 - New personal species for Forest - 30th October
Ring Ouzel - 3 - 26th October 

Hen Harrier - 2 males seen on several occasions 

Male Hen Harrier 1 of 2 seen departing Forest early morning - October 2018


Forest Valley, watching the rain pass through - October 2018

Sunset - On Forest - October 2018

Thursday, 25 October 2018

Pennington Marsh - 24/10/2018.

Fishtail lagoon, Pennington Marshes, October 2018
Had a morning on forest and then decided to pop down to Pennington for the lunch time high tide , spent most of the time at Fishtail lagoon above notably the water levels have increased. There was an obvious increase in numbers of birds present. 

Snipe-, Redshank-, Dunlin 6, Blackwit 1, Lapwing c80, Golden Plover 59+, Brent Goose 11, Wigeon 7, Pintail 5, Kestrel 1, Common Buzzard 2. 




Monday, 22 October 2018

Lodmoor 19/10/2018.

Dawn - Lodmoor RSPB Reserve, Weymouth, Dorset, October 2018
Had an early pre-dawn visit to Lodmoor, a rather chilly start to the day but as the sun pierced the morning sky the reserve came to life. The juvenile Lesser Yellowlegs was showing well straight away on west scrape but was silhouetted by the fire-balling sun, it was associating with the white-headed Ruff and they covered a large area of the west scrape before going out of view. 

Green Sandpiper 2, Greenshank 2, Blackwit 12, Dunlin 5, Snipe-, Ruff 1, Great Egret 2 poss 3, Water Rail, Med Gull-, Cetti's Warbler, Beared Tit (h) Marsh Harrier 1 imm, Common Buzzard. The day grew warm and a full morning was pleasantly spent on site. 

Lesser Yellowlegs juvenile - Lodmoor RSPB Reserve, Weymouth, Dorset, October 2018

Lesser Yellowlegs juvenile - Lodmoor RSPB Reserve, Weymouth, Dorset, October 2018

Greenshank - Lodmoor RSPB Reserve, Weymouth, Dorset, October 2018


Wednesday, 17 October 2018

The Vyne Watermeadows - Pec Sand.

View from the hide at the Vyne Watermeadows, Basingstoke, Hampshire, October 2018
Saturday 13/10/18

Had a trip out to look for the Pec Sand at the Vyne Watermeadows, Basingstoke. The nicely plumaged and brightly marked juvenile Pectoral Sandpiper was showing but disappointingly very distant on the mud edge of the lake above. It was far too distant for photography and even too distant for digi-viding. 

I tried to settle in and wait to see if the Pec would show any better but I think when a couple of kids tried squeezing through the hide window and the parents advised the children that they could make their clothes dirty and nothing about disturbing the other people present in the hide or the wildlife outside the hide I decided to end the torture of an afternoon in a hide on a public site and headed home. I guess seeing my second juv Pec of the autumn was still a treat.....



View from the hide at the Vyne Watermeadows, Basingstoke, Hampshire, October 2018

Sunday, 14 October 2018

Pennington Marsh - 10/10/18.

View from the sea wall at Fishtail lagoon , Pennington Marsh, looking across the Solent with the IOW in the distance.

Decided to have a kick around Pennington Marsh today, so as usual started off at Fishtail Lagoon but apart from 2 Redshank it was devoid of birds and as I could see a few people over looking Butts lagoon I decided to carry on through to Keyhaven lagoon. Being high tide there was a good number and selection of waders present on the back edge of Keyhaven lagoon.

Curlew Sandpiper 1 juv, Whimbrel 1, Golden Plover 2, Knot 1, Greenshank 3, Curlew c70, Blackwit c40, Redshank c30, Dunlin 35+, Ringed Plover 4, Turnstone 1, Snipe 1, Grey Plover 30+



I spent around 2 hours over the high tide period going through and counting the roosting waders before returning back to Fishtail lagoon and as I was just getting to the middle of Fishtail two small groups of waders flew in with a Spotted Redshank also heard coming in and joining the now roosting Redshanks. A scan through the Dunlin resulted in the juv Curlew Sand present but no sign of either the Little or Temmink's Stint but a nice day all the same. 


Thursday, 11 October 2018

Lodmoor Again....

Greenshank - Lodmoor RSPB Reserve, October 2018
Another glorious sunny Sunday with weather more like August than October resulted with a second visit to Lodmoor in the hope of second helpings of the Lesser Legs. It was a beautiful day but was pretty quiet for the time of year and so the pull of the Lesser Legs was enough to visit Lodmoor again two consecutive weekends. 

There was no sign of the Lesser Legs upon arrival so we decoded to do a complete circuit of the reserve, which was the first time I have ever done this. It was quite nice having a full walk around the reserve in such glorious weather but it was relatively quiet bird-wise.  

No sign of the Lesser Legs during our visit or for the rest of the day and the best bits were Greenshank 2, Spoonbill 1, Marsh Harrier, Sparrowhawk, Bearded Tit and several darvic ringed Med Gulls. Hopefully the Lesser Legs will settle in and stick around for a while like last Autumn's bird.

Greenshank - Lodmoor RSPB Reserve, October 2018