Friday, 19 August 2016

Waders still on the up..

3 Curlew Sandpipers at Cresswell Pond this morning were our first in Northumberland since September 2014 and we beat our record county Little Egret again with 16 at Cresswell this morning along with 25+ Black-tailed Godwit (several flocks flew over without stopping), 2 Knot, 4 Greenshank, 3 Common Sandpiper, 2 Avocet, a Water Rail and a Mediterranean Gulls also at the pond. A large flock of Black-headed Gulls visible in the distance from the car parking area held at least 30 more Mediterranean Gulls.

One of the first birds I looked at from the Budge Screen was a Wood Sandpiper in the north-east corner of the Budge Fields and it disappeared into the grass after a few seconds. We later walked along the path to the two hides and saw the Wood Sand again from here While we were stood here a Sparrowhawk flew over flushing the waders, most of which landed back on the fields, so we headed back to the screen. There were now 4 juvenile Little Stints walking around together (although quickly split up again), at least 22 Ruff, 25 Dunlin, 4 Black-tailed Godwits and a fly over Greenshank. It's amazing how many waders can stay invisible in the tussocks. We were also quite surprised to see a female Goosander land in front of the Budge Screen. They occasionally visit the big pool but we've never seen one actually on the Budge Fields before! 3 Common Sandpipers on the north pool were our first on the ground on the patch this year.

Our final stop was Castle Island where the water levels were unfortunately back to normal, though there was still good numbers of waders including a Curlew Sandpiper, Little Ringed Plover, Green Sandpiper, 29+ Black-tailed Godwit and 6 Common Sandpipers along with 6 Little Egret.

PWC 2016
Species: 152
Points: 199

Two of the Curlew Sandpipers at Cresswell
Goosander - unusual habitat!