Monday, 21 November 2016

Ducktastic

Blimey have we had some rain in the last 48 hours!  And that's lead to some pretty serious flooding in the river valley this afternoon...

Bridge Marsh, water as far as the eye can see!

Looking north from the road bridge over the Axe on the A3052

Looking south from the same bridge

The road ALWAYS floods here - that's one brave moped driver!

The flood from Axmouth


Thankfully this afternoon the rain had stopped, but this morning when it was lashing down I did try to go birding.  It was a struggle, but Bridge Marsh (pre-mega flood) was absolutely heaving with ducks so it was well worth getting wet.  This is how Bridge Marsh looked at 9am (compare with my first photo of this post which was taken at about 14:30)...

Great for birds, but not for birding!


Between cleaning my optics and warming myself up with my car heater, the flood water here showed 400+ Teal, 300 Wigeon, 70 Canada Geese, four Pintail (two pairs), four Gadwall (two pairs, first seen yesterday by PA) and a Dark-bellied Brent Goose (the lingering bird). That's my highest counts for four species of duck so far this autumn/winter, in fact it's the biggest flock of Pintail I've seen on the Axe for many years. This afternoon the wildfowl had spread out with the increase in flood water.

Also this morning I finally managed my first Redpoll of the autumn (about two months late!).  I was lucky to time my ten second walk from my front door to my car perfectly as one flew over calling. It really has been a poor autumn for all the finch species, Siskin and Redpoll especially.


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