Thursday 15 September 2016

A Red-Backed Shrike And a Few Waders

Early this morning I had a phone call from Ian W. to tell me of the juvenile Red-Backed Shrike found up on Beer Head earlier by Kevin Hale and there I was heading for Exeter!  Still thats the way it goes sometimes.  I'm sure we all know that feeling.  However after a late lunch and armed with the knowledge that the shrike was still showing well and its whereabouts I finally headed up to Beer Head about 2pm.  On arrival Tim Wright had the shrike in his scope though a scope was not really necessary as it was so close.  So when Tim said it was right in front of me I didn't realise at first he meant it literally and so close.   Tim and I spent some time watching this showy and confiding bird which was still there when I left.  Needless to say I took a few photos.  What a great little bird to see and on our own patch.

 While up on Beer Head the numbers of swallows passing through must have been in their thousands though I'm afraid I am no good at estimating the numbers and there were also plenty of yellow wagtails amongst the sheep.
Meanwhile Black Hole Marsh has continued to give us a few different birds to the usual.  10 days ago Ian M. had 13 Bar Tailed Godwits drop in in front of the tower hide on the river several of which still remain today at the back of Black Hole Marsh today.  Distant pictures I'm afraid.

Last thursday Steve found a Sanderling in the rain so not the best of photos here either

and yesterday he found an avocet on Black Hole Marsh which is not particularly common on the Axe let alone on BHM.  The avocet spent the day as far as possible from both hides but was still a good bird to see.

The juvenile Curlew Sandpiper is still with us today

along with these 2 ruffs and all the usual waders.