I started this morning with a Blackcap along Moorditch Lane and a Cetti’s Warbler singing from the track on No.6 tank. Continuing along Lordship Lane a Wheatear was in the model aircraft field and a Marsh Harrier flew over towards No.4 tank. The bushes along the south side of No.4 held a couple more Blackcap and a Willow Warbler, which was occasionally trying to mimic a Chiffchaff and a Mistle Thrush was towards the west end of the tank. There was a sizable flock of Linnet in the fields which also held 3 Common Snipe. A Corn Bunting appeared on top of a hedge and stayed for 5 minutes before disappearing back into the fields.
No. 6 tank had 10 Avocet, 4 Bar-tailed Godwit among the Black-tails and the flock of 20 Ruff. 28 Sand Martin and 4 Swallow flew north.
A further Willow Warbler was singing more typically along Brook Furlong Lane.
Observer: Alyn Chambers (images 1-3).
We didn’t make it on the marsh until mid morning so Alyn’s Corn Bunting wasn’t available to see. The skies above the marsh were alive with raptors and walking along Lordship Lane there were four Marsh Harrier, a fifth some distance away riding a thermal with 5 Common Buzzard and a Sparrowhawk. We met Jacqui and Idris Roberts en route and we all watched a flock of 190 Golden Plover were obviously anxious by the raptors overhead. They thought it wiser to fly over our heads in an attempt to keep their eyes on the action above. The Wheatear was still in the model aircraft field.
Continuing our walk around No.6 was really enjoyable way on taking in the wall to wall sunshine. Looking from the west side of the tank we could see both harriers hunting the reed beds and another Willow Warbler was calling from the thickets. The mitigation pools were alive with Common Teal, Shoveler, Common Shelduck and Gadwall. A couple of Black-tailed Godwit were away from the main flock over on 6.
Looking south over No.6 and part of the Black-tailed Godwit flock were still here with the same number of Avocet and Ruff that Alyn had seen earlier. Without my scope today it would have been impossible to fine the barwits though. Tufted Duck are increasing with 72 birds present and a lot of male posturing going on.
There were plenty of butterflies on the wing and my first Orangetip (male) was along Moorditch Lane with Small Tortioseshell and Peacock adding to the colourfula array.
A series of habitat images from the walk today.
Observer: Sparky and WSM (images 5-15).