Sunday, 11 March 2012

Black Redstart under suspicion?

Well, it's been a glorious day but not a sniff of a Sand Martin! Not long to wait for that though, I'm sure.

As for this weekend's birding. Yesterday started at Blithfield, helping out with the WeBS count. Blithe Bay this time, with highlights being a Redshank and 16 Goldeneye in amongst the common stuff. Over on the dam, the Black Redstart was still present and giving bursts of song. However, you could be forgiven to think that, with a lamp in it's face, the bird is getting a grilling from The Sweeney!

Come on sonny, confess! Who did the robbery?

The Black Redstart then moved towards the angling club and showed even closer.

With more daylight around now, I could fit in somewhere else before finishing at Uttoxeter Quarry on the way home. There's a decent selection of birds at Branston Gravel Pits in recent times, so that was next.

Birds here included the immature White-fronted Goose, 1 Knot, 4 Ruff, 5 Ringed Plover, 22 Golden Plover, 6 Green Sand, 19 Curlew, 1 Little Egret, 2 Pintail, 2 Pochard and 16 Shelduck.

Not surprisingly quite a few other birders were also present, as were the largest pair of binoculars you'll see this side of the Holden Tower! Which interestingly enough, belonged to birding stalwart, author and artist, Ian Wallace.

Finishing off at Uttoxeter Quarry before going home, a birder casually mentioned to me "there's a Grey Plover out there". What!!! Oh yes, so it was with a Redshank and a Dunlin. The light was fading a bit by now, and a little distant but you can tell what it is.

Back at the quarry today. No sign of the Grey Plover but there was the first Ringed Plover of the year, along with the Redshank, 1 Green Sand, 2 Shelduck, 5 Goldeneye and 15 Goosander.

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