Wednesday 22 April 2015

Mostly Quiet But Some Quality

Unlike the last couple of days I've not had much time out birding today. I spent an hour and half walking the dog around Axmouth this morning (hoping for Hoopoe, still...), all was very quiet and I didn't see many migrants at all. Well that was except for a five minute period at the top of Stepp's Lane when I got to where the path goes out to the golf course.  Five Wheatear were huddled together in a tight flock in the middle of a large field here, and in with them my first Whinchat of the year...

Wheatear left, and a Whinchat head to the right

And whilst watching these, I had a couple of brief views of a Ring Ouzel being chased up and down the track to the golf course by the resident Blackbirds. When I got round to the track it flipped over the hedge and into the field that I was just stood in, I went back but I didn't see it again.  I think it probably flew across the field and into the trees/hedge on the other side, it looked to me like it had only just dropped in and wasn't at all settled. Still it was great to see nevertheless, they're not a regular spring migrant here and sometimes we even have blank autumns for them.

The other half an hour of birding came this evening, and was prompted by a call from James Mc who could see a passage of gulls and terns passing distantly off Charmouth.  I got down to Seaton Beach at about twenty to eight, and although I didn't see any terns, I must have seen over 50 Common Gulls (mostly first-summers) flying east by 20:10.  In with them were three Med Gulls (an adult and two first-summers) and best of all three Bar-tailed Godwits (two in summer plumage).

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