Saturday 23 August 2014

Dodging showers

The weather today has been very odd for the time of year. It felt almost winter-like at times, then in a sheltered, sunny spot, more like how August should feel. And then there were the showers... torrential.

I visited the patch quite early this morning and headed for the hides. The four swallow chicks in the little hide have fledged, but are returning to the to be fed by the adults. They are so used to people in the hide, they didn't move, even when the hide was full.

Still at home - hanging around waiting to be fed. I ringed these birds on nine days ago
I wonder if all four of them will squeeze back in here tonight?
 The only wader activity was a few snipe and a single common sandpiper in front of the Oddie hide. There were a few warblers along the track, willow warbler, blackcap, whitethroat and chiffchaff were noted.

willow warbler
spot the imposter
Offshore, a lone arctic skua sat on the sea.

I popped back to the patch this evening and had a look out from the Budge screen. There were at least five, maybe six ruff, a green sandpiper, three greenshank, one redshank, a few snipe and 14 curlew on the adjacent fields. Three or four late swifts moved through in a generally southerly direction.

There were a lot of hirrundines over the pools and later, at dusk, lots of swallows were around the concrete block house - I wonder if they roost in there?

swallows at dusk by the blockhouse

Apocalyptic skies over Widdrington
We went for lunch in Amble today, so called in to see the Caspian gull as Janet needed for her Northumberland list.
iPhone-scoped shot of the Casp

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