Sunday, 27 May 2012


Yesterday saw me earning a few domestic brownie points: Windows cleaned, grass cut, patio cleaned,  bookcase sorted out (and it needed it) BBQ cooked etc. So today I have decided to chase the birds seen at Stodmarsh yesterday, namely White winged black Tern, Little Stint and Wood Sandpiper all of which are needed for year ticks. I collect one of the Jims (Jim senior still knackered from  4 weeks holiday in the last 5!..shocking and to think he was worried retirement might be boring). Anyway Jim and I head of down the M2 and arrive at Stodmarsh for 7am to find a full car park and after walking towards Tower Hide we find a group of birders scanning the main lake for the WWB Terns. As we approach we hear Bittern boom and whilst it's calling another pair put on a nice show circling around above us for around ten minutes.
Pair of Bittern

Lot's of Common Tern hunt over the lake but no sign of the target. The reserve is alive with warblers.....Cetti's, Sedge and Reed all seen and heard in good numbers, lot's of Heron and a few Marsh Harrier are seen before we move on to Marsh Hide. On arrival the small hide is already full with a particularly noisy group of locals but we squeeze in and before long the shout goes out from the locals "Wood Sand flying in" We get on it and although distant we're happy with the find. In this same distant pool we locate a couple of Greenshank and three Redshank all of which come and go as the Lapwings chase them and when a Marsh Harrier flies by. Only once though does the Wood Sandpiper give another glimpse as it takes flight again to a nearby pool. A shout goes up for Montagu's Harrier but as we've seen a particular light male Marsh Harrier earlier we assme the guy has just seen that bird and nobody else sees anything other than Marsh. On the walk back we locate at least five Hobby high up above the lake to round of the morning. Only got one of the trio on site yesterday but a good morning still had.  We get good numbers of male and female Cookoo on the reserve but little else of note.

We made a quick stop at Crossness on the return leg to try for Bonaparte's for Jim without joy only to get back to find somebody had it on the other side of the river.

On what looked a good day for Butterflies we saw only a few with the pictured Speckled wood the best of the small bunch. ( Also seen Large and Small White, Peacock and Red Admiral)
Back home for 1pm and in time to get the BBQ on again.

Year list now stands at 240 with only ten needed for the target of 250 I set myself this year.

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