Sunday, 29 April 2012

Flooded Garden

Most of the lakes are flooded and water still rising this afternoon, my first Garden Warbler for the year was singing well during a lull in the rain, near the yellow iron gate. Whitethroats and Sedge Warblers singing in various places and a good feel to the air, but no waders other than an Oystercatcher on Sandford, where the Mute Swans nest has probably just been flooded out.

Saturday, 28 April 2012

More timely luck

I had only come down to LFGP to check that the boat was secure should flood levels rise even more, Steve was in th hide, but I scanned and quickly saw one of the two terns present was an Arctic. Another lucky get back after missing Wednesdays late afternoon individual. With a text sent out to the usual locals, I thought nice for a few more than just Steve and I to see it, but it was not to be, it slipped away without us noticing by 13:20. A pair of Redshank were noisy, 5+ Swift and a good handful of Swallows, Sand Martin and 2 House Martin also went thru. Nothing to be found on BSL in a one minute look, just more hirundines.

Friday, 27 April 2012


At 12:18 I had an amazing bit of luck having ran to car to shelter from a heavy shower, I decided to move the car so I could look North from the car park and immediately saw a large raptor circling over Lavell's at about 150ft. I lost view for a moment behind the top of a Poplar, then it came back into view,  hovered for a moment and through the heavy rain I could only just make it out as an Osprey, it circled twice then off North over LFGP, where it was chased by BH Gulls. Only my second ever, my other being back 16th Sept 2002, but also my first spring bird.

Thursday, 26 April 2012

Said I wasn't worried

Picked up Reed Warbler and Lesser Whitethroat on BSL viewpoint late afternoon.

Getting a bit behind

Am now 9 behind on the park year list which is an amazing 125 already, but am not worried about Lesser Whitethroat, Hobby, Green Sandpiper, Cuckoo & Reed Warbler, even Marsh Harrier has been a species I have connected with 5 out of the last 7 years. Yesterdays Arctic Tern was a blow and another brief visit this morning didn't produce any, just Common Sandpiper on the beach again and 4 Swift overhead.

Wednesday, 25 April 2012

All too brief visit

With so many Arctic Terns and Little Gulls being reported all over inland waters across the UK, I thought the strong Southerly winds and heavy rain, might make it worthwhile and I would love to have stayed longer, but in two brief BSL visits 09:00 and 13:00, there were none here. I did however pick up a lone Swift moving quickly thru North, 3-4 Swallows and Sand Martins doing likewise between a brief lull in the rain.

Saturday, 21 April 2012

Cold start

I had a quick early morning hour around the usual spots from 06:00, a Little Egret on LFGP, 4 Teal & 1 Common Sandpiper, was about it there. Another Little Egret was just by Sandford Mill, Grey Wagtail at the layby bridge. From Bittern Hide the Med Gull showed well and was calling frequently, no better shots with my HTC though. At the back of the scrape Sedge Warbler and Whitethroat called. It was really darn cold and light hail began to fall as I did a loop back round BSL sailing club and Sandford, with nothing more to report.

Friday, 20 April 2012

Little Gull

I am very grateful to Peter Scudamore who I passed at the layby, having picked up FOLL post and not stopped due to having my son in the car. Only to get a text 5 minutes when I arrived at my mums, saying he had a Little Gull and had I seen it? Nooooooo, and fair play to my mum for jumping in the car with me to look after Ethan, so I could run down the path for a 2 minute stop, look and dash back. A very nice adult winter type plumage and it never stopped feeding up and down around the islands. My first since 2007 and only my fifth ever.

Wednesday, 18 April 2012

Migration resumed

After a week of cold North winds and lack of time for meto look, I connected with Sedge Warbler, 2 at WSL then 3 Common Terns flying around BSL, then a Whitethroat at the end of BSL viewpoint, then short bursts of Nightingale song well out of sight in Middle Marsh, nice 4 year ticks in one 1.5 hour trip. Now hope to get down early again to connect with Cuckoo and maybe catch up with a Green Sandpiper any day now. I expect Swift, Reed & Garden Warbler will follo in the next 2-3 days, then Hobby and Lesser Whitethroat. After that we just have to hope for good wader and tern migration, as well as making an effort to be up and out early to catch the fly overs.

Monday, 16 April 2012

Start again

With just an hour free mid afternoon, I was over the moon to immediately find a superb male Redstart at the bottom of the car park field, my sixth in 3 years, the only difference this time being that it was my first spring find. It only showed briefly twice, so a record shot was out of the question on this occasion. 4-5 others did get a 20 second view around 16:30, so great to know others saw it too.

Saturday, 14 April 2012

Mediterranean Gull still here

After being absent all morning and missing Cuckoo yesterday and today Hobby, Common Tern and Sedge Warbler, I refound the Med Gull on Lavell's Tern scrape bund. Allowing a much better picture opportunity.

Thursday, 12 April 2012

Migration getting going

Brian Bennett texted to say the Med Gull was on Tern scrape late afternoon, so I popped down hoping for a better record shot, only to see it flying over East, then back North towards LFGP. I decided to do a loop of the car park field, turning up nothing, I thought I'd give BSL a one minute scan for Common Tern and hirundines. On the sailing club beach a Grey Wagtail and the first Common Sandpiper for the year, were foraging at the other end near the blue containers. Despite two ignorant dog walkers allowing their pets to chase the geese and swans, the bird remained long enough for Brian to get it and Trevor, but it had done a quick sortie to the main island, but returned just after I left. Prior to that 3 House Martin went thru, along with 2 Swallow and a small handful of Sand Martin.

Mediterranean Gull

After missing one on the 3rd, I was delighted to find this bird on Lea Farm G.P. at around 09:00, assumed to be a 2nd summer. I actually heard it call first on the shingle island with the Black headed Gulls, it then moved to the SW corner, where it stayed until about 10:15.

Wednesday, 11 April 2012

Wheatears in the afternoon

Amid a hectic afternoon of work matters, visits to pick up mail and meet ups with antenatal friends, I got texts from Brian saying 2, then 4 Wheatear were on the landfill at Lea Farm. I finally got there at 17:05 with Brian, Trevor anf Geoff still on a pair, running around the track in line with behind the shingle island, always great to see spring Wheatear. It was clear from speaking to the others who visited earlier that they had not been present until late afternoon. Also present Little Ringed Plover and the pair of Garganey. Trevor had a Yellow Wagtail fly through his scope view whilst looking at a Buzzard, Geoff had 4, then 2 more Common Tern go thru.

Bright and cool

07:45 at LFGP produced a singing Willow Warbler on the other side of the Loddon half way to the green bridge, then 5 Sand Martin around the wall, 2 Oystercatcher flew in from DP, a lone Shoveler and Wigeon, 8 Teal and then a male Mandarin flew over low and kept going over Lodge Wood Lake (LWL). No sign of any Garganey, Redshank and no luck with any Sedge Warbler at Lavell's, but was happy with 2 Year ticks.

Tuesday, 10 April 2012

More Garganey?

Yesterday, LFGP turned up a pair of Garganey and we wondered if they were the same Redwood Lake pair, from my pictures, I suspect they are different, this female shows a break in the supercilium, a more marked loral spot, etc. They are still there today.

Sunday, 8 April 2012


A very quick walk down to Ron's hide, didn't look so promising. I had heard a White fronted Goose was killed in the morning by a fox, so I came down to check it out. The corpse was too far away to say either way, but I did hear Ring-necked Parakeet, a lone Swallow went NW and just before I left a male Yellow Wagtail flew over the lake NNW at about 100 feet, calling. Very happy to add a year tick for the park and me of course with such little time on my hands.

Saturday, 7 April 2012

Now a daddy

When we have a feeding and sleep pattern, I will be able to get out with at least some regularity, for short visits. I managed that on the 5th and caught up with Little-ringed Plover, 3 Oystercatcher flew over LFGP and 2 Swallows fed overhead, on what I am not sure, it was really rather cold. Still missing Sedge & Willow Warbler, House Martin and hoping another Med Gull shows up late April to make up for missing one on the 3rd.