Sunday 11 February 2024

Sunday 11th February

The Warren's first record of Lesser Scaup, an immature ♂, was the clear highlight, followed by the three Greater Scaup (♂♀♀) it was with! They were found in the estuary corner late morning, moving along Shutterton Creek on dropping tide, before flying to the main Exe channel briefly and then flew N up estuary @ 12:10. 

Lesser (2nd bird) and Greater Scaup - Lee Collins

Lesser (2nd bird) and Greater Scaup - David Flack

Also in the estuary, a pair of Goldeneye, eight Eider, five Red-breasted Merganser and a Great Northern Diver, with wader counts including 930 Dunlin, 125 Bar-tailed Godwit, 120 Knot, 111 Grey and 12 Ringed Plover, 27 Sanderling, 21 Curlew and two Greenshank.

Offshore 535 auk sp., 108 Kittiwake, 11 Common Scoter and three Red-throated Diver flew SW in a 1hr 45min watch from the seawall, with eight Great Crested Grebe and a Great Northern Diver on the sea.

Elsewhere, after an absence last year, 10 Mallard duckling were at the Main Pond along with six Shoveler, a flock of c60 Siskin were around Dead Dolphin Wood, three Chiffchaff and two Goldcrest were around the bushes and a Buzzard drifted over early afternoon.

Mallard - David Flack

Year list additions:

108. Greater Scaup
109. Lesser Scaup

Other Wildlife: Plenty of insect activity between the showers with a Red Admiral and five Buff-tailed Bumblebee queens on the wing. The flowering Alexanders hosted over 20 Common Dronefly, with similar numbers of Yellow Dung Fly and around a dozen Common Bluebottle Calliphora vicina. Amongst them an Orange-bearded Bluebottle C. vomitoria, a couple of greenbottles Eudasyphora cyanella and the picture-winged fly Tephritis neesii. 

Common Dronefly - Kevin Rylands

Also out in the warming sunshine several Green Shieldbug, a Dock Bug and a Seven-spot Ladybird.

Green Shieldbug - Kevin Rylands

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