Sunday 20 October 2019

Sunday 20th October

Dawn broke to the coolest morning of the autumn so far and in the face of a stiffening NNW breeze, steadfast 'vis-mig' observers were rewarded with a Great White Egret that nonchalantly drifted south, circling the site once at height before it departed at 08:06; the third to pass the site this year. Also on the move, 137 Jackdaw, 116 Woodpigeon, 94 Goldfinch, 47 Skylark, 46 Lesser Black-backed Gull, 28 'alba' Wagtail, 20 Meadow Pipit, 18 Shelduck, eight Chaffinch, six Song Thrush, four Stock Dove, three Rook, two Golden Plover, a Sparrowhawk (another hunted the bushes) and a Lesser Redpoll.

Combined WeBS and counts during the ebbing tide in the estuary were c.980 Oystercatcher, 377 Redshank, 349 Wigeon, 247 Curlew, 172 Teal, 144 Dark-bellied Brent Goose (10 juvs), 96 Black-tailed Godwit, 37 Turnstone, 35 Bar-tailed Godwit, 32 Cormorant, 28 Grey Plover, c.20 Dunlin, 16 Mute Swan, 15 Greenshank, 12 Canada Goose, ten Little Egret, ten Knot, only nine Great Black-backed Gull, eight Sanderling, six Common Gull, three Grey Heron, the pair of Black Swan, two Mediterranean Gull, two lingering Sandwich Tern; also the Slavonian Grebe, just a single Ringed Plover, the late Whimbrel and a Kingfisher.

Dark-bellied Brent Geese (juvenile) - Martin Overy

Details of the colour-ringed Black-tailed Godwit seen today was ringed as a pullus in Iceland in 2007 and has since accumulated a long sightings history, having been seen in Dublin Bay in a few springs, overshot a couple of times into N France in early autumn and it typically winters on the Exe Estuary. 

The Cetti's Warbler was again heard chattering from the Main Pond. The bushes were quiet, holding four Goldcrest, two Chiffchaff, two Reed Bunting, less Linnet and scattered individuals of Stonechat and Cirl Bunting. A glary sea only revealed two Red-throated Diver and awareness to the presence still of a large feeding flock of gulls and seabirds far offshore.

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