|Spot Fly (c) Early Birder|
A consistently calm and warm weekend with lots of avian and invertebrate interest.
I was again struck by the numbers of newly fledged tits and warblers in the hedgerows. This week I was noticing lots of busy young Chiff-chaffs foraging , picking around, over and under leaves and sometimes sallying forth to snatch a passing fly. There was also a juvenile Yellow Wagtail out on the Big Otmoor scrapes and a recently fledged Little Ringed Plover on Greenaways.
could not re-find the young cuckoo that had been seen and photographed earlier
in the week I feel it will not be long before we find another, as the adults
were present in good numbers this spring.
|Juvenile Cuckoo (c) Paul Thomas|
|Blackwits on Southern Reedbed (c) Tezzer|
True to the calendar several Green Sandpipers have turned up the latest being on the Greenaways scrape on Sunday morning. Also on the wader front eight Black-tailed Godwits flew in to the southern lagoon on the reedbed on Sunday evening. As the water is drawn down onto Greenaways in order to allow later breeding by Snipe, so shallow muddy areas are being exposed, and these will encourage passage birds to drop in for bed and breakfast. Sadly the Terns on the tern raft lost their chicks, to some predator or other but are showing signs of mating and courtship so perhaps its not too late for a second try.
|Tern with a gift (very small pike) (c) JR|
Spotted Flycatchers are being seen in the Roman road area and on Sunday morning we heard a male Quail calling out for a drink on the Hundred Acres field adjacent to the Pill. Two Grasshopper Warblers were reeling from July’s Meadow where there are lots of scrub and grassland Butterflies to be found including a good showing of Marbled Whites.
|Gropper (c) JR|
Both Beautiful and Banded Demoiselles were seen and photographed this weekend, and Black Tailed Skimmer was another fresh dragonfly on the wing.
|Beautiful Demoiselle (c) JR|
|Banded Demoiselle (c) Badger|
|Black Tailed Skimmer (c) Badger|
The Common Cranes are still being seen whilst flying between feeding areas and hopefully the long grasses will help protect them from predators and from disturbance. They are very wary and sensitive to people getting too close. It would be disappointing were they to be hassled into moving away. So should you be lucky enough to see them please admire them from a distance they look wonderful as they fly.
|Cranes at dusk (c) JR|
Over the next few weeks I am going to be giving the reedbeds a good “grilling”. With a number of rare and exciting herons and egrets in the country it can only be a matter of time before one or other of them turns up on the moor. Great white Egret has become almost annual and we have yet to see one this year, they are breeding very successfully in Somerset and there could be some young birds coming through. Perhaps even a Little Bittern or a Squacco Heron might appear and that would really make our summer.
|Hurried Little Grebe (c) JR|