Monday 30 August 2021

Knot and Grey Plover arrive in numbers

NE to ENE breeze all day, overcast.

Just my two checks of the south shore so far (MD)
Common Sandpiper 2 together briefly on the foreshore before leaving south
Linnet 32
Mediterranean gull 5 adult 1 juvenile on beach next to wooden jetty,
Robin 1 near the lighthouse 
Wheatears none on the out leg, first one seen flying in across the harbour near the waterfall then another 2 had come in near the lighthouse and 6 on the foreshore - so minimum 6 individuals, probably 9
Rock Pipit, again none seen on way out, but 4 arguing on foreshore on return. Suspect 2 were passing through.
Rock Pipits in "dispute"

High water 17:15
Wheatear 4 on foreshore 
Rock Pipits at least 5, that was the highest single count, but they were all along the foreshore.
I really just went down to see what was on the saltmarsh and foreshore, I had expected it to be busy, but unbelievably for a Bank Holiday Monday there was no one walking on the beach out from the saltmarsh, and better, the water line was full of waders.
It was good to see flocks of waders again, even if you couldn't tell what they were! This first clip is just a flavour of the evening with a flock of small waders coming in to land on the waterline.

I walked out on the beach, but didn't want to get too close and spook them, so images not great. But this isn't a bad clip. It includes: Curlew, Bar-Tailed Godwit, Grey Plover, Knot and Dunlin.

Estimate of numbers, these are woefully undercounted as I couldn't separate the species of the more distant birds.
Mediterranean gull 6 with roosting BHGs
Oystercatcher c3,000
Curlew c200
Bar-Tailed Godwit 40 
Grey Plover 150 minimum 
Knot 650 minimum 
Dunlin 240
Many of the above 4 species in summer plumage 
This clip is part of one on the groups of waders, this is the one where most of the Grey Plover were. Also Knot and Dunlin.

I managed not to spook them, but as the tide ebbed, more and more groups flew along the shore to feed. This flock contains Bar-Tailed Godwit, Grey Plover Knot and Dunlin, it ends as we started with silhouettes of waders against the evening light, but at least this time we know what they are!

This is just a still from the above clip, not a great shot but you can make out:
 Bar-Tailed Godwit, Grey Plover, Knot and Dunlin