Sorry for the lack of blog activity lately. Don't worry, the excitement of the two red-rumped swallows didn't send me over the edge, there are two good reasons.
|Bog alder and spruce forest - home of white-backed woodpeckers|
|middle-spotted woodpecker at the nest|
|Pygmy owl (poor quality, nearly dark!)|
|European bison at dawn - worth the 3.30am start|
|black redstart - just out of the nest|
|great reed warbler in FULL blast|
Barn owls seem ever-present at the moment, with both parent hunting around the patch from early evening. (I did fear for them the other night when three 'shoot anything that moves' types turned up with air rifles). A male marsh harrier is hunting regularly over the Budge fields too. Two little terns were feeding in the bay, a species I failed to see in 2011.
What is worrying is the total absence of grasshopper warblers - where are they? I spoke to Dave Elliott who hasn't heard any at East Chev either. Is this situation the same across the County?
Today was generally grey, the sun did put in a short appearance in the afternoon. I had a good walk around the patch this morning but didn't see much of note. It wasn't easy to see anything from any of the hides as the grass has now grown up in front of the windows. Normally I would cut this myself, but not with my bad-back! Hopefully NWT are on the case. I spent some time wandering around with the new camera, just trying it out. The light was awful so not much success.
|View from the hide - good if you like wildflowers|
|cuckoo flower or ladies smock|
Tonight I had a quick look on the see and scan over the patch. The oddest thing was a party of 19 sanderlings, all in breeding plumage, that appeared on the beach from nowhere. The question is...are they late migrants heading north or are they either failed or non-breeders moving back south?
Hopefully normal bogging service will now resume.
PS the patch year-list now stands at 114 (must try harder)