Sunday 23rd May 2021

In the river mouth a group of seven Turnstone, three Dunlin and a single Grey Plover were all birds which may have decided not to head north to breed. The Pied Wagtails had fledged from the Sailing Club eaves which meant that we could shelter from the cold wind, while Peregrine monitoring, and not worry that we were disturbing them.

Pied Wagtails, female, male and juvenile. Left and top right photos by Ian Williamson

The Ringed Plover who is incubating four eggs continues to stick it out on the nest which is no more than a metre from the road. Half the time she tolerates a passing car but other times she scuttles off. She always runs off whenever anyone gets anywhere near on foot. I hope she can keep going despite the disturbance, thankfully, I could see the eggs were very warm through my thermal camera. The Sailing Club gets much busier from early June so I hope the eggs hatch and she can walk the chicks away before then.

Highlight of the day was seeing an Avocet on DL’O scrape kneeling down with eight tiny legs dangling down form her breast feathers, pretty soon four tiny Avocet chicks appeared. They are precocial and so instinctively know how to feed and they are fully mobile straight out of the egg. There were also six Bar-tailed Godwit waiting out a squall around the back of the island out from DL’O hide. A very close Cuckoo flew across the water 30 yards in front of me while I was stood in the area of JV hide. 

Avocet chicks

The Little Ringed Plover was incubating safely and I began to wonder if the male was still around, I hadn’t seen him for a week or more. A Dunlin landed close by and the male suddenly appeared out of nowhere flying straight at the intruder. I’m next visiting on Wednesday and I’m hoping for chicks by then. I also checked the Avocets on Gt Marsh and there were another two chicks here.

A sea-watch was reasonably productive although showing signs of the end of the season. Six Common Scoter headed east and single Gannets, Fulmar and Kittiwakes were nice to see while eight summer plumaged Sanderling scampered along the beach.

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