Ian texted me at just after 10am to say that there was a Barnacle Goose on Venner. They are a declining feral resident with up to 30 or so wandering in Hampshire and nearby counties. This is the first one to be seen at NO since I started visiting. Sarah and I were due to go out for a drive to Stewarts Garden Centre in Christchurch and so I suggested we detoured via NO first.
We arrived an hour later, I made my down the walking trail to find Ian and Clay at the start of the Boardwalk Field. Ian’s scope was trained ready on the sleeping Barnacle Goose. It immediately woke up and took to the water to swim around JV Island before getting out to feed on the edge of the Wigeon Fields.
I headed back to the car and just before getting back to the road I noticed a couple of Swallows on the wires. I managed a ‘flight’ shot just as one of them lifted off.
There was still another patch tick waiting for me back at the parking area. Ian and Sarah had heard several Whimbrel calling while I was watching the goose. Thankfully another called loudly soon after I arrived back at the car and I watched it lift up from the saltings before heading purposefully east. My camera was off but thankfully I had just enough time to boot it up, switch to continuous auto tracking and get a few flight shots.