I was sat on the north bank looking out over the area where the water meets the rapidly drying mud. A smallish group of 30 Redshank, 2 Avocet, 3 Dunlin, 12 Lapwing and a male Ruff still sporting some of its summer wear were settled below my watch point.
A much smaller gathering of c200 Black-tailed Godwit were mostly feeding on the south side of the sludge tank, but even from that distance I managed to pick out a new colour ringed bird. I couldn’t see one of the four colour combo so we’ll see what Jenny Gill can extract from that information and I’ll let you know accordingly. A splinter group of the godwits settled unaware of my presence below the bank and spent a long time in the shallows were gulping up huge volumes of greyish brown mud whilst sifting through it for their food. The bickering calls of 3 Common Sandpiper rung out across the relatively still air.
I was putting off counting the ducks for a change but I was drawn like like a junkie’s addiction to their numbers. Swinging my telescope over in the general direction of the ducks where the usual c100 Tufted Duck were present with the usual c100 Mallard. A few Gadwall included a few ducklings, the ubiquitous Common Shelduck, 12 Common Teal, 3 Shoveler and a drake Common Scoter! Quite the handsome beast he was as well, quietly assuming an air of blending in but without the obvious requisites. He was still there when I left and looked settle at least for the evening.
Video of the drake Common Scoter here: https://vimeo.com/227642148
The gulls came in for a bathe and a nap before heading out to the estuary for their main roost. The majority were Black-headed with a dozen Common, single adult Lesser Black-backed and an adult Mediterranean Gull.