An emphatic reminder of yesterday's cautionary tale about it still being the bird breeding season came in the form of the bizarre sight of a family party of Mute Swan waddling in a line along the Back Path near Dead Dolphin Wood with the cob, 'DDN', leading from the front. Although trying reach the estaury, the abundance of fencing means they will have to wait until the young have fledged before they escape.
The party was chaperoned by one of the local birders, from a safe distance, back to the Main Pond. The sensible behaviour of dog-walkers this morning with their dogs on leads and giving the swans a wide berth ensured a positive outcome.
A Wood Sandpiper remained all too briefly as it called constantly from The Bight area, then flew over the ridge and was lost heading out to sea in an easterly direction. This is the site's 41st record, it's on a peak date and was of typically short duration; only one individual (in Oct 1999) is recorded as having remained on site for more than one tide.
Also present, more-or less-similar counts to those of recent days were c.480 Oystercatcher, 59 Dunlin, 56 Ringed Plover, 17 Sanderling, three Turnstone and a Greenshank. About half of the 18 Mediterranean Gull flew in off the sea (8 juv, 1 ss, 9 adult); again single figures of juvenile Lesser Black-backed Gull were mixed in with the Herring Gull and only 30 Sandwich Tern dropped onto 'woodhenge', including a presumed Welsh-ringed bird.
The bushes had 12 Stonechat, including fledglings, also seven Whitethroat, six Chiffchaff, five Willow Warbler, four Blackcap, and one Garden Warbler; also singles of Sparrowhawk, Green Woodpecker and Great Spotted Woodpecker. Also noted, about 15 Swallow passed through, three Wheatear and a Stock Dove.