Tuesday, 10 April 2012

Saturday and Sunday 7th and 8th April

One of the carpark willow Warblers on Sunday morning.

All made from lichen and spiders webs.

Damp Robin

Dramatic landing in the murk on Saturday
all pics (c) P. Barker

A damp and drizzly weekend that was enlivened by a fall of warblers on Saturday night. First thing on Sunday morning there were at least six Willow Warblers in the carpark field alone, calling and chasing each other around. Further birds were heard calling from the hedgerows in other parts of the reserve. There were at least three Sedge Warblers, two calling from the reedbed adjacent to the path to the second screen and another near the pump house (per Graham). There were also seven Ruff present on Big Otmoor six females and a much larger male. They were feeding out on the grass rather than round the scrapes. There are still over a hundred Golden Plover looking resplendent in their summer plumage out on the far scrape. A Little ringed Plover was picking around the edge of one of the new scrapes on Saturday but not seen on Sunday.
It was good to see and hear at least four snipe drumming and one “chipping” close to the path to the first screen.
Ravens were seen both days and a Peregrine passed through on Sunday morning flushing everything. There is still a substantial flock of Fieldfare of over a hundred and fifty, on the fields next to the reedbed. We managed to find at least one Redwing amongst them.
Most unusual bird this weekend was a Ruddy Shelduck found out on Big Otmoor by Colin Oram. Sadly it was not present on Monday morning but may still be lurking in the area. It seems odd that we have had a record of this exotic bird before we have had a Shelduck of the conventional sort on the reserve this year.
The year-list is currently standing at 111 but I am anticipating a big surge by this time next week. Can’t wait!

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