Sunday, 16 September 2012

Marsh Harrier Roost NDC (Sunday)

I spent the late afternoon and early evening in the Geoff Smith Hide today waiting to see what was going on with the Marsh Harriers. I got to the hide a bit earlier than usual, at about 1600 hrs and it was actually quite interesting as several males were seen coming in to roost fairly early (possibly due to the weather, or possibly that's just what they do?).  Anyway, this evening (between 1600-1845) I had a minimum of 12 come in to roost, and as I walked back to the car as a torrential shower hit, another one flew in over the road in front of me, so a minimum of 13 birds in total.  There was still about an hour of light left but I was getting hungry and the visibility was decreasing rapidly so I gave it up!

It was apparent that there was an increase in wildfowl and waders about, with 250+ Teal moving about,168 Lapwing, 225 Golden Plover, 2 Ruff and c15 Snipe.  A Merlin made a dashing appearance after a flock of Linnet. No sign of any owls by 1845, but then the weather really wasn't conducive to it!

This morning I had a really nice walk with the dogs, found a nice mixed flock with a number of Yellowhammer, Reed Bunting, Greenfinch, Chaffinch and Tree Sparrow. Also a decent flock of Linnet and Goldfinch too. A few Meadow Pipit and Yellow Wagtail were noted flying south, as was a migrating flock of 45 Swallow. On returning home a nice surprise was a flock of 15 Corn Bunting that flew over!

Here's a couple from late winter, looking forward for some more views like this please!

Short-eared Owl - about 800 m closer than the owls seen yesterday 

 Short-eared Owl - about 800 m closer than the owls seen yesterday 

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