Sunday 2 August 2009

Spoonbills at Oare Marshes

We had heard there were Wood sandpipers at Oare Marshes and Lynne wanted to go and see her parents at Blean so we set off late morning. David Campbell heard on his pager that three spoonbills had been seen at Oare that morning so that was an extra reason to go. At Oare there was a good collection of waders. We saw at least 200 black tailed godwits, 100+ golden plover, 4-5 curlew sandpiper, 2 greenshank, 2 sandwich tern, 2 common tern, 11 avocet, 100+ redshank, several ruff in various plumages, as well as the usual assortment of ducks, a female teal, lapwings, little grebe, little egret, etc. While we were looking for the wood sandpiper the three spoonbills, which had been on the West Flood, took to the wing, wheeled around and flew off. I managed to get a few flight shots before they got out of range. In this photo the adult is in the lead, followed by the two juveniles (black wingtips). The second juvenile hasn't quite got the hang of flying with legs straight behind yet!! He seems to be running to catch the others up!

Spoonbills, Oare Marshes.

We never did find the wood sandpipers but we did see a pair of hobbies catch a swift in mid air and then pass the prey one to the other in the air. I had just put my camera back in the car, so no photos of that fascinating episode. I've made a mental note never to leave my camera in the car again!

I'm only working a four day week next week. I'm off on Friday to go to the Scillies for a pelagic boat trip to see seabirds, the sort that don't normally come ashore much. I'm hoping to increase my year list to re-take the lead from David. He's 3 ahead of me now. I'm on 209. He's on 212. Grrrrr! No, of course I'm not overly competitive!!

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