Woolston Eyes Monthly Sightings


David Bowman

2018-08-18

A 6.30 am start, under gloomy skies started with a female/juvenile Garganey in front of the Morgan Hide and 40 Black-tailed Godwits spread out over the lagoon. A single Green Sandpiper then appeared, feeding alongside eight Common Snipe. The Marsh Harrier, which is now entering the fourth week of its stay with us, started hunting mid-morning and was constantly unsettling the feeding waders and wildfowl, which included several hundred Gadwall, 50 Shovelers and scores of Teal. The harrier then demonstrated its aerial abilities, during a prolonged duel with one of the local Sparrowhawks. The only passage of note, early on, was of a few hirundines of all three species until a group of 60 Swallows flew determinedly south. Later on 12 Swifts moved westward, two Yellow Wagtaild arrived to feed with a small flock of Pied Wagtails and, as ever, a Kingfisher was active in front of the Morgan Hide. Kieran Foster and the ringing team were also having a good morning, with Grasshopper Warbler, Cetti’s Warbler and Garden Warbler among the ten warbler species ringed. Photo of the Grasshopper Warbler from today. Cheers David Bowman (with David Spencer, Diane Shepherd, Sue Haddock and Brian Baird)

Submitted by: David Bowman

 

Keith Gallie

2018-08-16

Green Sandpiper taken from Rotary hide

Submitted by: Keith Gallie

 

2018-08-17

Photo of one of the Garganey which has been frequenting the scrape this week. It was still there today along with the Marsh Harrier and at least 2 Green Sandpipers. Also today Dave Riley caught a Tree Pipit on No.1 bed.

Submitted by: David Spencer

 

2018-08-15

A flying, lunchtime visit to Nos.3 and 4 beds today, still managed to deliver some good birds. Our collective records from today included: two Garganey, one Tree Pipit, two Greenshanks, 2 Green Sandpipers, 11 Common Snipe, two Common Terns, 75 Black-tailed Godwits, one Peregrine, two Garden Warblers, four Water Rails and a Kingfisher.

Cheers David Bowman (with Bert Lloyd, Mike MIles, and John Barber)

Submitted by: David Bowman

 

Dave Hackett

2018-08-14

A cloudy but warm day for my weekly walk around the reserve It was fairly quiet but a number of interesting sightings brightened the day. Over 600 Black-headed Gulls were on the canal and river and 34 Mute Swans and two broods was a good count, as was a total of 7 Grey Herons. Including Monday’s count on No.3 bed, Gadwall totalled 369, a little down on the previous week. On No.3 bed on Monday evening were about a hundred House Martins and 50 Sand Martins together with a Little Egret. Today found a juvenile Peregrine on the viaduct and 2 Ravens flying north over No.1 bed. Given the cloudy conditions few butterflies were on the wing but there is reason to suppose that Common Blues, currently totalling 239, may not have yet reached their maximum numbers. Photo; Meadow Brown on No.4 bed

Submitted by: Dave Hackett

 

2018-08-13

An early evening visit to No.3 bed at Woolston Eyes, under cloudy skies for once. Not much passing through, other than 20 Swifts and a few hirundines but plenty of wader and raptor activity. The Black-tailed Godwit flock seems to have settled at 57 for the moment, while just one Green Sandpiper visited the Morgan Hide scrape and four Snipe and 180 Lapwings were out in the shallow water. The Marsh Harrier, which is now entering the third week of its stay, repeatedly flushed the waders and wildfowl and a juvenile Peregrine also made a couple of high speed passes, while several Sparrowhawks and Buzzards also put in appearances.

Cheers David Bowman

Submitted by: David Bowman

 

David Bowman

2018-08-12

Photo of an early Migrant Hawker, taken on No.3 bed on 25th July.

Cheers David

Submitted by: David Bowman

 

Dave Hackett

2018-08-11

Although numbers of some species of butterflies have probably peaked, a further 5 Common Blues found today along the Canal Track and on the north meadow of No.3 bed brought the reserve total for the past week to an impressive 232. A Small Copper has been reported on the north meadow path over the past few days and was still present today; see photo

Submitted by: Dave Hackett

 

David Bowman

2018-08-11

Photo of a Green Sandpiper ringed on No.3 bed today.

Cheers David

Submitted by: David Bowman

 

David Bowman

2018-08-11

Photo of a Kingfisher from No.3 bed today.

Cheers David

Submitted by: David Bowman

 

David Bowman

2018-08-11

With the water levels on No.3 bed dropping steadily, this is the time of year to be on the lookout for passing waders. Today it was seven Dunlin and a Greenshank which moved through, while the feeding wader flock contained two Green Sandpipers (though there are probably a minimum of five on the bed), 77 Black-tailed Godwits, four Snipe and 80 Lapwings. The increase in muddy margins for feeding also increased the visibility of the local Water Rails, with three seen well and two more calling from cover. As usual, at this time of year, one of the resident Kingfishers spent a good while fishing from its perch in front of the Morgan Hide. Birds of prey were also on the hunt, with one Peregrine, two Sparrowhawks and 13 Common Buzzards joined, at lunchtime, by the long-staying Marsh Harrier, which gave great views, both perched and in flight. Photo of a Common Buzzard from today

Cheers David Bowman (with David Spencer, Helen Wynn, Dave Steel, Brian Baird and Les Jones)

Submitted by: David Bowman

 

David Bowman

2018-08-09

It’s always exciting to walk onto No.3 bed at this time of year, hearing Black-tailed Godwits calling and wondering which other waders might also turn up. This morning started well at 6.15 am, with yesterday’s three Garganey still feeding out from the Tower Hide. The Godwit flock had increased to at least 54, with eight Snipe and 60 Lapwings also present. A couple of Green Sandpipers were in front of the Morgan Hide and then a Greenshank flew in, calling and touched down briefly before flying in the direction of the Linley Hide. One of the local Kingfishers was looking well-settled on its perch in front of the Morgan Hide till the Marsh Harrier, which has now stayed for nearly two weeks, came out of its roost and set all the waders in motion, something it did repeatedly all morning. Later, a juvenile Peregrine also caused a stir, skimming over the lagoon and causing panic. Kieran Foster’s ringing team also had a good morning, with nine new Garden Warblers and a Cetti’s Warbler caught, along with scores of commoner species. Walking off the bed, after also squeezing in a productive meeting with Anna Hetterley and Anthony Da Silva from the Carbon Landscape (to plan some wildlife training workshops) it was nice to see four Migrant Hawker dragonflies along the track. Photo of the Marsh Harrier Cheers David Bowman (with David Spencer)

Submitted by: David Bowman

 

Brian Baird

2018-08-07

The first Migrant Hawker Dragonflies were present on No.3 bed today.

Submitted by: Brian Baird

 

Dave Hackett

2018-08-07

A survey of the northern section of No.1 bed on Sunday 5th August resulted in a total of 182 Common Blue butterflies and a reserve total of 217. Small Whites have been present in excellent numbers and over 400 have been found across the whole reserve. Monday evening on No.3 bed produced a total of 14 Purple Hairstreaks, nearly all on the south bank. Also present were 400 Gadwall and 46 Black-tailed Godwits. Today’s walk was equally productive with a Grey Partridge and a Holly Blue on Butchersfield Tip and a good variety of birds on No.3 bed including the long-staying Marsh Harrier, a Yellow Wagtail and 120 Lapwing. Photo; Common Blue Butterfliy

Submitted by: Dave Hackett

 

2018-08-07

Wader passage on No.3 bed picked up pace this morning. Counting the birds was helped by the continued presence of a female Marsh Harrier which, regularly flushed the feeding flocks. Early on, Kieran Foster and his team caught and ringed three Green Sandpipers, while a fourth un-ringed bird later appeared on the Morgan Hide scrape. The Black-tailed Godwit flock held 47, while a group of 14 Snipe were disturbed from cover by the harrier. A Kingfisher was fishing in front of the hide, while a single Yellow Wagtail, five Linnets and plenty of Goldfinches dropped onto the scrape. As well as Buzzards, Sparrowhawks, Kestrel and Marsh Harrier, a single Hobby and three Peregrines soaring together made up the raptor complement. The latter were almost certainly the two juveniles from he local breeding site, in company with one of the adults. The link to the video clip shows most of the activity in front of the Morgan Hide today.

https://youtu.be/QUJPeJ16xhkt

Cheers David

Submitted by: David Bowman

 

David Bowman

2018-08-04

An early start on No.3 bed this morning produced, as ever, a good variety of sightings. A Hobby was over the bed first thing, while 28 Black-tailed Godwits, 5 Snipe and 65 Lapwings made up the wader complement. Two Ravens then slipped over, heading east and, after a long vigil, the Marsh Harrier put in a showing, completing a week long stay. A Water Rail creeping around the muddy margins, a Kingfisher on the regular perch in front of the Morgan Hide and a Willow Tit were the pick of the resident species. Aerial feeders were passing through in small numbers, with 70 Swifts but just a handful each of Swallows, Sand Martins and House Martins.

Photo of a Kingfisher from the Morgan Hide

Cheers David Bowman (with David Spencer, Helen Wynn, Sue Haddock and Brian Baird)

Submitted by: David Bowman

 

David Bowman

2018-08-02

A 5.45 am start on No.3 bed this morning, as ever produced an excellent variety of birds. Early on a Hobby was hunting the few Swallows and Sand Martins coming out of a small overnight roost. On the muddy edges of the lagoon a single Green Sandpiper, 3 Snipe and 11 Black-tailed Godwits were settled and feeding. Or , a at least they were, until the Marsh Harrier which has been present all week, came out of its roost and scattered them across the bed. Two Kingfishers then came to fish in front of the Morgan Hide, while 60 Swifts dropped in to feed on aerial prey,over the north bank. Kieran Foster and his ringing team also had a good morning, catching a second juvenile Kingfisher (after one yesterday), a juvenile Cetti’s Warbler from one of our breeding pairs and a couple of Garden Warblers, along with the commoner stuff. Photo of a Goldfinch from this morning. The link to a video clip shows the two Common Terns and Yellow Wagtail which perched on the nest rafts yesterday, as well as demonsrating the elegance of the Marsh Harrier’s flight (as a bonus, some of the latter is even in focus) https://youtu.be/UJ-tZfCR2uQ Cheers David Bowman

Submitted by: David Bowman

 

David Bowman

2018-08-01

A bit of a Groundhog Day on No.3 bed this morning, with pretty much the same key species as yesterday. Records included: one Yellow Wagtail perched on a raft with two Common Terns, the Marsh Harrier still present early on, 18 Black-tailed Godwits, one Green Sandpiper and three Snipe feeding in the shallows, three Kingfishers in front of the Morgan Hide and a hunting Peregrine.

Photo of a Giant Puffball (I think!)

Cheers David Bowman (with David Spencer, Bert Lloyd and John Verdon)

Submitted by: David Bowman