Sunday 22nd August 2021

The sun hadn’t been up long as I watched a Wheatear resting on the dried creek near the boardwalk. Behind it, on De L’Orne flood there were 23 Black-tailed Godwits, all juveniles. A Green Sandpiper was also present walking along the edge of the vegetation towards the shingle bar and at 7:05am a Tree Pipit called above me as it headed south, a patch tick.

Green Sandpiper

The brand new hide at Venner is impressive and just about finished but still locked up. Looking down the side of it I could see the seven fully grown Tufted Duck ducklings were still present but four fully grown Shelduck ducklings had appeared for the first time and the number of Little Grebe juveniles had increased to three. There were also two distant Whinchat on the fence line at the back of Wigeon Fields.

adult and juvenile Little Grebes

The Spotted Redshank which roost near the De L’Orne Roosting Stones are not normally viewable from the viewing screen but today a single bird was on show. Shortly afterwards a second bird called nearby and flew over to join it.  

Spotted Redshank

The family of 4 Avocets from Normandy Marsh, an adult and three juveniles, have now been here for five weeks, they were sweeping for food in unison. A juvenile Ringed Plover and a juvenile Dunlin were associating together and feeding nearby.

Field Grasshopper

There were another two Whinchat on the fence line along the northern edge of Three Fields North. As well as Willow Warblers quite a few Lesser Whitethroats were on the move and so a bit more visible, these are my first Lesser Whitethroat sightings in six weeks.

Whinchat photo by Ian Williamson

There were lots of Migrant Hawkers all over the reserve, perhaps 30 or more. I checked as many as I could for Southern Migrant Hawker but no luck.

Migrant Hawker
Migrant Hawker photo by Ian Williamson

A sighting of Green Woodpecker flying over Warren Lane was my first non-heard-only record this year.

juvenile Green Woodpecker photo by Ian Williamson

As I walked past the Pullen Hide another Tree Pipit called overhead.

Tree Pipit overhead

As I walked towards Gravelly a Goshawk exploded from the undergrowth to my right. On Great Marsh there were few birds on the drying scrape although the Flight Pond was still favoured by Green Sandpipers, now up to four birds, my highest ever count at Needs Ore.  

Small Heath photo by Ian Williamson

At around 9:30am I headed over to Inchmery for my WeBs count. Highlights included the first returning summer plumaged Grey Plover, 116 Curlew, 49 Redshank, 14 Little Egret, 6 Whimbrel, a single Bar-tailed Godwit and a single Lesser Black-backed Gull.

Grey Plover

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