Tuesday, 28 August 2012

Ochruros Musings and a Good Staffs Day

11th August 2012

The Ochruros season came to a poignant end, watching a lone bird hopping about on roofs from an elevated urban watchpoint. I can now reveal that Martyn and I kept tabs on two separate presumed single males from spring into summer. It was an absolute privilege to watch these charismatic urban dwelling birds right from the very heart of the conurbation,

Both of the birds seemed to remain unpaired, although this could not be proven as the birds became elusive after their initial territorial singing. Both were 1st-summer birds, which gives me great hope as it is though that 1st summer birds tend to return to their natal area. Perhaps the apparent lack of breeding is simply due to a lack of experience?

12th August 2012

Croxall Lakes, 7:45am

Starting out at Croxall, alas the high water level on the main pool is still causing much disappointment on the wader front. However there was visible muddy scrape on the back pool and this and the river banks had attracted 10 plus Green Sandpiper, and 15 or so Snipe. A single Common Sand was on the edge of the main pool. 3 Little Egrets today, with up to 6 being reported of late.

In addition to the increase in wader activity there was a noticeable movement of passerines. This included 1 Garden Warbler, 2 female Blackcaps, some lovely yellowy juv Willow Warblers, 2 Chiffchaffs and 1 Yellow Wagtail.

Goosander are now a regular fixture on the river. A Kingfisher was on the back pool.

Blithfield Reservoir, 12:00

With an easterly breeze and a slight inclemency in the air, it was time to move on to bigger and better things (ie Blithfield) for the remainder of the day.

I hadn’t quite expected a regional tick today, but soon after arrival I was furnished with one! 2 Sandwich Terns were around the deeps as we watched from the Fisherman’s hut. 

Sandwich Tern - images appear courtesy of Martyn Yapp - http://www.theregionaltick.blogspot.co.uk/

Another very good Staffs bird was a juvenile Marsh Harrier that was in Tad Bay at 2:55pm, having put in a number of appearances both here and at Uttoxeter in recent days.

Other notable birds were 2 Yellow-legged Gull present (adult and 3rd cy), a juv Arctic Tern along with 30 or so Common tern and 2 Common Sandpiper.

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