Tuesday 30 April 2013

Tuesday 30th April 2013

At least 12 Great Northern Diver remain offshore, with 10 in summer plumage, also offshore a Red-throated Diver, 18 Common Scoter and five Great-crested Grebe. Elsewhere a Sedge Warbler was at the Main Pond, 102+ Whimbrel were on site, 12 Dunlin were in the estuary and the Pintail was on the Main Pond but also visited Langstone Rock and the estuary.

Monday 29 April 2013

Monday 29th April 2013

A good count of 114 Whimbrel were on site, mostly on the golf course, with other wader counts limited to15 Ringed Plover, six Dunlin, five Curlew, three Bar-tailed Godwit and two Turnstone, a single Dark-bellied Brent Goose was also in the estuary. Elsewhere at least ten Great Northern Diver remain offshore with four Little Tern and a Manx Shearwater, whilst a Willow Warbler by the Main Pond was the only new migrant.

Wildlife News - The first Peacock and Speckled Wood of the year were on the wing.

Sunday 28 April 2013

Sunday 28th April 2013

The first Lesser Whitethroat of the year was on Warren Point but there was little sign of other passerine migration with three Wheatear present and 19 Swallow, four Goldfinch, a Chaffinch and a Meadow Pipit flying through. Offshore there were a minimum of 26 Great Northern Diver on the sea, mostly in summer plumage, a total of 114 Pale-bellied Brent Geese flew in and up estuary, three Little Tern were present and 12 Manx Shearwater flew south. Elsewhere wader counts included 44 Whimbrel, 34 Ringed Plover, 26 Dunlin, 13 Turnstone, two Bar-tailed Godwit and a Grey Plover with the Pintail on the Main Pond.

Pintail 26/04/13 © Lee Collins

Saturday 27 April 2013

Saturday 27th April 2013

The highlight was another harrier, today though it was the site's fifth record of Montagu's Harrier, the first since April 1979. The bird, a second calendar year female, was first seen from Exmouth and flew in off the sea over the seawall, before circling Langstone and heading off inland. Once again however there was little in the way of backup migrants although 11 Whitethroat, three Wheatear, two Sedge and a Willow Warbler were present but just nine Swallow, two Sand Martin and a late Siskin passed through. Waders counts included 330 Oystercatcher, 66+ Whimbrel, 56 Dunlin, 26 Ringed Plover, 19 Turnstone, three Sanderling and three Bar-tailed Godwit. Elsewhere the Pintail was on the Main Pond and completed another high tide fly around, and offshore at least seven Great Northern Diver were present along with 18 Sandwich and a Little Tern.

Friday 26 April 2013

Friday 26th April 2013

The highlight was the site's 17th record of Marsh Harrier, a female type that drifted over around 8.40am. The same bird had headed north over Berry Head at 7.30 so took over an hour to travel c20miles into the strong northerly headwind.  Other migrants were however very thin on the ground with eight Swallow, two Swift, a House Martin and a Yellow Wagtail overhead and 23 Wheatear, mostly in Greenland Lake. Waders were also on the move with 120 Dunlin, 68+ Whimbrel, 17 Turnstone, 11 Ringed Plover, five Sanderling, four Bar-tailed Godwit and a Grey Plover. Elsewhere the Pintail was on the Main Pond and offshore four Little Tern were present and two Great Northern Diver flew east. Late news of a Lesser Whitethroat in the Entrance Bushes.

Wheatear 26/04/13 © Lee Collins

Thursday 25 April 2013

Thursday 25th April 2013

The thick fog hampered viewing early morning but did produce some migrants with the first Yellow Wagtail of the year flying over with 70 Swallow and two House Martin but just five Wheatear on the deck. Offshore 50+ Pale-bellied Brent Geese flew west with 31 Common Scoter, 17 Sandwich, seven Little and four Common Tern also present. Elsewhere 48+ Whimbrel, 45 Dunlin, 24 Ringed Plover, 15 Curlew, three Grey Plover, two Dark-bellied Brent Geese, two Sanderling, a first summer Mediterranean Gull and a Redshank were in the estuary and the Pintail was still present.

Wednesday 24 April 2013

Wednesday 24th April 2013

Two Sedge Warbler were around the Buffer Zone with 24+ Wheatear, three Whitethroat and single Willow and Reed Warbler. Elsewhere two Brent Geese, 12 Whimbrel, 10 Sandwich Tern, three Ringed and two Grey Plover were in the estuary, 13 Common Scoter and five Great-crested Grebe were offshore and the Pintail was on the Main Pond although did a circuit of the lower estuary mid evening before returning.

Tuesday 23 April 2013

Tuesday 23rd April 2013

The first Sedge Warbler of the year of the year was reported along with a good count of 68 Whimbrel.

Monday 22 April 2013

Monday 22nd April 2013

News was limited to three Wheatear in Greenland Lake with two Sand and a single House Martin passing through. Elsewhere 14 Whimbrel were in the estuary and the Pintail remains on the pond.

Sunday 21 April 2013

Sunday 21st April 2013

The first Dartford Warbler and three Eider of the year were reported with other migrants including nine Wheatear, eight Pale-bellied Brent Geese, five Whitethroat, four Whimbrel, four Reed Warbler, three Willow Warbler and a Jay.

Saturday 20 April 2013

Saturday 20th April 2013

The first Manx Shearwater of the year was offshore in the evening with two Red-throated Diver also offshore, a Great Skua however was not offshore flying high inland early morning. Elsewhere 32 Sandwich Tern, 18+ Whimbrel, four Brent Geese, two Dunlin and a Ringed Plover were in the estuary and migrants included six Willow Warbler and five Wheatear with 12 Swallow, two Sand Martin and single House Martin and Swift were overhead.

Friday 19 April 2013

Friday 19th April 2013

A Long-eared Owl was in the Spinney on the Golf Course early evening, the 12th site record but only the second in spring. Other migrants include the first two Reed Warbler of the year at the Main Pond, three Whitethroat, three Wheatear and a couple of Willow Warbler. Elsewhere a Red-throated Diver and 11 Sandwich Tern were offshore, the Pintail on the Main Pond and 17+ Whimbrel, 17 Dunlin and three Ringed Plover were in the estuary.

Thursday 18 April 2013

Thursday 18th April 2013

Offshore there were single Black-throated and Red-throated Diver, five Great-crested Grebe, 15 Sandwich and an Arctic Tern. Elsewhere 48+ Whimbrel headed north during the day, other migrants included a Whitethroat, three Swift, three Wheatear and a single Willow Warbler, with the Pintail on the Main Pond and three Dark-bellied Brent Geese in the estuary.

Wednesday 17 April 2013

Wednesday 17th April 2013

Offshore a summer plumaged Great Northern and a Red-throated Diver were present with an Arctic Skua south and a first summer Mediterranean Gull lingering off the seawall. Elsewhere 31 Sandwich Tern and nine Redshank were in the estuary, eight Swallow flew north but there was otherwise a disappointing lack of migrants.

Tuesday 16 April 2013

Tuesday 16th April 2013

Two early Swift the first of the year flew through during the morning with a Firecrest in the Back Meadow, two Whitethroat on the Point, 12 Wheatear, 10+ Swallow, six Willow Warbler and two Blackcap the other grounded migrants. Elsewhere six Jay flew east, three Little Tern, five Pale-bellied Brent Geese and an Osprey were in the estuary with 30+ Whimbrel and the Pintail was on the Main Pond.

Monday 15 April 2013

Monday 15th April 2013

A late Redwing was by the Main Pond with other migrants including the first two Whitethroat of the year, 45 Swallow, 25 Wheatear, three Willow Warbler, two Siskin and single Sand and House Martin. Two Little Tern were in the estuary with 12 Teal, eight Sandwich Tern, six Whimbrel, five Brent Geese, two Sanderling, a Grey Plover and a single fly over Dunlin. Elsewhere the Pintail and a Greylag Goose were on the Main Pond and four Tufted Duck (three males) were offshore.

Greylag Goose 15/04/13 © Lee Collins

Sunday 14 April 2013

Sunday 14th April 2013

Two Arctic Skua, the first of the year, flew distantly south early morning with the year's first Arctic Tern off the seawall later on, also offshore a Black-throated and two Red-throated Diver, 50+ Common Scoter and four Gadwall. Waders were also on the move with flocks of c70 Bar-tailed and nine Black-tailed Godwit moving through along with at least 10 Whimbrel, other counts from the estuary included 16 Knot, 15 Brent Geese, six Ringed Plover, two Dunlin, two Grey Plover. The Slavonian Grebe was again back off Cockwood now in summer plumage and 30+ Sandwich Tern were present along with single Common and  Little Tern. Elsewhere migrants included a male Redstart in Dead Dolphin Wood, 25+ Swallow, at least 20 Wheatear, a Blackcap and a Willow Warbler.

Saturday 13 April 2013

Saturday 13th April 2013

The first Little Tern of the year was in front of the hide late morning with three Common and 24 Sandwich Tern, also in the estuary eight Whimbrel with 37 Turnstone, 16 Ringed Plover, 15 Knot, nine Brent Geese, four Dunlin, two Sanderling and a Grey Plover. Other migrants were thin on the ground with six Chiffchaff, five Wheatear, four Swallow, a White Wagtail and a single House Martin.

Friday 12 April 2013

Friday 12th April 2013

Another small fall with 11+ Willow Warbler, 10 Swallow, five Chiffchaff, the first two House Martin of the year and a Wheatear on site. Counts from the estuary included 445 Oystercatcher, 22 Shelduck, 20 Grey Plover, 14 Knot, 11 Sanderling, 11 Brent Geese, two Whimbrel, two Ringed Plover and just one Dunlin. Elsewhere offshore there 15+ Sandwich and two Common Tern and the Pintail was on the Main Pond. Two colour ringed Shelduck were present - both from the Axe Estuary, east Devon. JB was originally rung on 08/01/12 and first seen on the Warren on 23/03/13, the first record for over a year. Details are still awaited for TP.

 Shelduck 12/04/13 © Lee Collins

Shelduck 12/04/13 © Dave Jewell

Thursday 11 April 2013

Thursday 11th April 2013

The first Firecrest of the year was the standout migrant with 12+ Chiffchaff , four Wheatear, three Swallow, at least three Willow Warbler and a Sand Martin also arriving. Elsewhere 53 Dark-bellied Brent Geese,  41 Dunlin, 20 Grey Plover, 19 Knot, 16 Red-breasted Merganser, 10 Sandwich Tern and four Whimbrel were in the estuary, a Slavonian Grebe was offshore, a Redpoll flew through and an Osprey flew south around 9.30am.

Wildlife News - A Stoat showed well in the Back Meadow unsuccessfully hunting Rabbit and Moorhen. Despite some signs of spring still no reports of the Sand Crocus or any more butterflies.

Wednesday 10 April 2013

Wednesday 10th April 2013

Counts from the estuary included 70 Curlew, 62 Dunlin, 57 Dark-bellied Brent Geese, 25 Redshank, 19 Grey Plover, 12 Sanderling, 10 Sandwich Tern, eight Knot, seven Ringed Plover, an increase to seven Whimbrel and five Teal. Elsewhere a Slavonian and five Great-crested Grebe were offshore, three Swallow and two Siskin were overhead and the drake Pintail remained on the Main Pond.

Tuesday 9 April 2013

Tuesday 9th April 2013

The change in weather brought a change in the birds with a long anticipated fall. A smart male Redstart on the Golf Course provided some much needed colour with 20+ Chiffchaff, eight Goldcrest, at last two Willow Warbler, the first of the year, a Blackcap and a Wheatear. The first Jay of the year was in the Cuckoo's Nest but had probably not migrated so far to arrive on site. Offshore the first Common Tern of the year was present with 26+ Common Scoter, 15+ Sandwich Tern, 13 Shoveler and two Tufted Duck. Elsewhere at least two Whimbrel were in the estuary with a Pale-bellied and 30+ Dark-bellied Brent Geese, whilst the drake Pintail remained on the Main Pond.

Monday 8 April 2013

Monday 8th April 2013

Another virtually migrantless day with two Chiffchaff and a Wheatear surviving in the cold miserable conditions. Some species did arrive though with a Whimbrel and 56+ Sandwich Tern in the estuary, also there 94 Dunlin, 51 Brent Geese, 34 Knot, 21 Grey Plover, 10 Sanderling, seven Bar-tailed Godwit and four Ringed Plover. Elsewhere the drake Pintail and a Water Rail remain on the Main Pond.

Pintail 06/04/13 © Lee Collins

Sunday 7 April 2013

Sunday 7th April 2013

Counts from the estuary continue to dwindle with 120 Dunlin, 97 Curlew, 39 Brent Geese, 33 Knot, nine Ringed Plover, seven Bar-tailed Godwit, six Grey Plover, four Teal and two Wigeon over the high tide, also present 14 Sandwich Tern including one (White EDZ) that was ringed as an adult on the Ythan Estuary, Aberdeenshire in August 2010. Thanks to Ewan Weston of the Grampian Ringing Group for the prompt information.  Elsewhere the drake Pintail remains on the Main Pond, just four Chiffchaff and three Wheatear were on site and six Red-throated Diver headed south offshore with one on the sea.

Saturday 6 April 2013

Saturday 6th April 2013

A female Black Redstart was along the Back Path with at least four Wheatear and 10 Chiffchaff on site. Brent Geese were on the move with 120+ passing through during the day, in the estuary there were c40 Sandwich Tern, 31 Redshank, 14 Teal, seven Sanderling, two Wigeon, two Grey Plover and a Greenshank. Elsewhere 120+ Chaffinch flew NE early morning, a drake Pintail was only the second record from the Main Pond, an Osprey was over Shutterton Creek and a Stone Curlew in flight over the Golf Course around 5pm.

Friday 5 April 2013

Friday 5th April 2013

The first Redstart of the year was part of a small arrival of migrants including eight Chiffchaff and two Wheatear. Elsewhere 55 Brent Geese, 12 Redshank and a Greenshank were in the estuary with three Tufted Duck and 20 Sandwich Tern offshore.

Thursday 4 April 2013

Thursday 4th April 2013

The first Swallow of the year flew through, whilst a Greenshank remains in the estuary with 80+ Brent Geese and a Great-crested Grebe. Elsewhere 14 Sandwich Tern and four Common Scoter were offshore.

Wednesday 3 April 2013

Wednesday 3rd April 2013

A smart full summer plumaged Scandinavian (littoralis) Rock Pipit was feeding on the flooded area around the Entrance Bushes late afternoon. Elsewhere 140+ Brent Geese and a dozen Sandwich Tern were in the estuary, but there was no news either way on the Hoopoe.

Tuesday 2 April 2013

Tuesday 2nd April 2013

The Hoopoe remains on Warren Point but was again very elusive. Other grounded migrants were limited to seven Chiffchaff, six Wheatear and a Blackcap, but the second Osprey of the year headed north midmorning. Elsewhere 238 Brent Geese, 13 Redshank, 13 Teal, five Wigeon and a Greenshank were in the estuary. 

Chiffchaff 02/04/13 © Simon Thurgood
Sandwich Tern 02/04/13 © Simon Thurgood

Wildlife News - The Common Seal was again on Bull Hill and the Sand Crocus remains conspicuous by its absence.

Monday 1 April 2013

Monday 1st April 2013

An unexpected arrival considering the continuing cold and blasting easterly wind was the site's 16th record of Hoopoe, the earliest ever and the first since 2004. It was on Warren Point but unfortunately proved very flighty and elusive. Other migrants included the first Black Redstart of the year around the shore of the Bight, 13+ Wheatear and eight Chiffchaff, with 75+ Meadow Pipit overhead. Elsewhere the first Yellow-legged Gull of the year headed NE with 143 Lesser Black-backed and 80+ Great Back-backed Gull, a Red-throated Diver and 12 Sandwich Tern were offshore and counts from the estuary included 205 Dunlin, 170 Brent Geese, 130 Curlew, 74 Grey Plover, 47 Knot, 27 Sanderling, 18 Teal and five Wigeon.

Hoopoe 01/04/13 © Dave Stone

Wildlife News - A Small Tortoiseshell on the wing was the long awaited first butterfly of the year.