Wednesday, 13 July 2011

First of the Returning Migrants

The first Green Sandpiper of the autumn dropped in on the flood at Mythop a few evenings ago however despite twice looking I failed to see it and from what I heard from others it was proving elusive despite being on a relatively small flood. I headed down this evening for my third attempt and quickly located it feeding along the exposed mud on the left hand side. My seventh yeartick already this month despite not seeing any in June!

From here we headed to Skippool Creek to check the waders on the incoming tide. Paul Slade was already present but hadn't seen anything of note however the tide was rising and starting to push the waders feeding further down the river up towards us. I located a moulting adult Spotted Redshank feeding upriver from us that has been present in the area for a couple of weeks, and at least 5 Common Sandpipers were still present and calling a lot. Over 150 Redshanks gathered on the bank just upriver from us and after Paul left a small flock of about 30 Dunlins joined them and searching through them I found a different wader that I couldn't identify. It was much greyer than the Dunlins, was feeding and moving much more horizontally compared to the upright stance of Dunlin, had a short black bill and also had a slight mottled brown area around the top of the neck and top of the back. I might go down tomorrow to take another look as I'm not very good with waders and want an ID. A Little Egret that was feeding up near the Shard Bridge was the first I have seen for a while and must be a returning bird to the area.

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