I took today off work and spent most of it on the patch.
I started the day birding the sunny edge of the bushes, seeing lots of warblers. Whitethroats have been amazing this year, normally there are two or three breeding pairs on the patch, this year there must be ten pairs, incredible.
|Another sedge warbler photo|
Whilst birding the bushes, I heard a call that I recognised, but couldn't pin down with only the briefest and distant views of the bird. An hour later, I heard the same call, another bird flying south, but overhead, a pipit, a tree pipit. I've not seen (or heard) a tree pipit at Druridge in years, probably since Stewart was birding Druridge, but I recognised it from trips to the south coast.
From the Oddie hide, I had a frustrating time. A wader was among the rocks on the far shore, it got me excited, I only had the briefest of views as it dodged among the rocks. Superficially, dunlin, but the upper-parts were really well marked, it looked a bit stout and had a really white belly/vent. Pec sand sprang straight to mind, I needed to see it head-on. I didn't, it flew off....Bastard! And then... a small falcon flew south behind the bushes and over the dunes. It was either a merlin or hobby, my money would be on the latter. (see below)
Some you win......
I scanned the banks ten times in case it came back, it didn't. This common sand dropped in though.
|One of three little gulls|
So, some quality birding on my day off, well worth not going into work.
140 tree pipit
142 green sandpiper