Thursday, 31 August 2017

Sutton Bingham - Thu 31 Aug

A quick visit this morning failed to produce an end of August surprise, but a single Common Sandpiper was noted on the northern causeway. A stop at the Fishing Lodge produced a second Common Sandpiper and a Green Sandpiper whilst three Little Egrets and a Kingfisher were also noted.

Tuesday, 29 August 2017

Sutton Bingham - Tue 29 Aug

A flying visit this morning on the way to work and a patch lifer! A Marbled Teal was on the northern causeway, and what a cracking little duck. Unfortunately it had a yellow ring on the left leg, so an obvious escapee but lovely to see none the less.
The only other birds of note this morning were a single Common Sandpiper and two Little Egrets.
A return visit on the way home from work produced another year tick, this time in the form of three Yellow Wagtails in and around the horse paddock south of West Pool.
With good numbers of Yellow Wagtails being reported from the south coast over the past few days, I was hopeful that one would drop in to the reservoir. Always a nice bird to add to the patch year list.
The Marbled Teal was still present in the far corner of West Pool.
Sutton Bingham year list 2017 now at 105 species.

Monday, 28 August 2017

Sutton Bingham - Sun 27 Aug

A slightly earlier visit to the reservoir today as I arrived on site soon after 6.30am. Starting at the northern causeway I was treated to a couple of close views of two Kingfishers as they flew around. Two Common Sandpipers were also present but there was little else...until a flock of Mallard flew south from the north-east corner of the reservoir and in with them a medium sized wader. However, it was much too far away for me to have any chance of identifying it so what followed was a mad dash to the southern end of the reservoir in the unlikely hope it had found somewhere to settle, but it hadn't! One that got away and a rather frustrating start to the visit. However, a Sedge Warbler was a nice find and a Peregrine was on one of the pylons. Finally, a third Kingfisher was noted.
After a decent walk I drove back to the northern causeway to check the various fence lines, etc. for migrants (of which there were none) when I heard a tern calling, and then to my surprise two adult Sandwich Terns suddenly appeared and eventually settled on the northern causeway not far from the car.
After last year's adult bird it was a real treat to get this scarce Sutton Bingham visitor on the year list again so soon. The two Sandwich Terns were then joined by a Common Tern before all three were lost to view and I didn't see them again during my time on the patch.
NB: Both Sandwich Terns were ringed, but one (in heavier winter moult) bore a dark blue ring with EFS in white. I have logged this and it will be interesting to find out where the bird was from.
I then set off for the Fishing Lodge and a quick check of the dam where a further two Common Sandpipers were present. A Hobby then passed through heading east, my first at the reservoir since the early summer. One of the adult Great Black-backed Gulls was also seen this morning and a total of four Little Egrets were noted.
Sutton Bingham year list 2017 now at 104 species.

Update: The Sandwich Tern with the colour ring EFS was ringed on 13 June 2013 as a chick at Forvie NNR on the Ythan Estuary in NE Scotland, some 715km from Sutton Bingham, as the tern flies!

Friday, 25 August 2017

Sutton Bingham - Fri 25 Aug

After a very quiet visit yesterday morning, today was much better. Unbelievably I notched up the sixth Wheatear of the year, with a bird in fields behind the Canoe Club. Whilst watching the Wheatear, a Green Sandpiper flew over calling. So two decent patch birds in the space of a few minutes. There were still two Common Sandpipers around the northern causeway and West Pool, whilst a couple of Little Egrets were also noted. There was a good movement of hirundines with several Sand Martin mixed in with numerous Swallows. Finally, a Cormorant was having one mighty battle with a fish it caught.
I watched the contest for several minutes and it looked as if the bird gave up eventually, though whether the fish survived is anyone's guess.

Wednesday, 23 August 2017

Sutton Bingham - Wed 23 Aug

A morning visit before work today and I concentrated on the northern causeway simply because there was a fair bit going on. A juvenile Common Tern was present on the causeway and showed really well at times. It spent most of the time on the causeway itself with occasional jaunts over the main reservoir. After about half an hour or so a second juvenile Common Tern suddenly appeared and after "collecting" the original bird, they flew over West Pool and were lost to sight.
video
Also this morning, the first four Teal of the "winter" were present on West Pool and a total of five Common Sandpipers were seen.

Tuesday, 22 August 2017

Sutton Bingham - Tue 22 Aug

There's not been much happening at the reservoir over the past week, certainly nothing that warranted a blog posting. However, something a bit different today with a Green Sandpiper present on West Pool before it took to the air and flew off high to the west. A single Common Sandpiper was also on West Pool whilst three Little Egrets and a Kingfisher were seen on the main reservoir. There were also several Chiffchaffs and Willow Warblers around this morning, though I couldn't find anything more unusual amidst them.
A check of the area around the dam on the way home from work this evening failed to produce much more than a few Linnet and a Common Sandpiper. However, driving round to the northern causeway I found a Wheatear just to the south of West Pool.
This is my fifth Wheatear of 2017, and the second bird this autumn. I think I have now seen more this year than in the last 15 years combined!

Wednesday, 16 August 2017

Sutton Bingham - Wed 16 Aug

A bit more interest today with the highlight being a Sedge Warbler in vegetation along the water's edge near the Canoe Club, a much welcome addition to the patch year list. Sedge Warblers bred on the site as recently as 2014, but over the past couple of years have been noted solely as a passage migrant.
Also this morning, another Common Tern initially seen at the southern end of the reservoir before it flew north. A total of seven Common Sandpipers were also about today and three Little Egrets were noted. Finally, a couple of Kingfishers were seen.
Sutton Bingham year list 2017 now at 103 species.

Tuesday, 15 August 2017

Sutton Bingham - Tue 15 Aug

What a difference a day makes! Very quiet at Sutton Bingham this morning, especially when compared to the quality birds that were seen yesterday. Just three Common Sandpipers on West Pool during a morning visit and three Little Egrets on the main reservoir. Very little else to report, though I was able to get a photo of this female Emperor Dragonfly.

Monday, 14 August 2017

Sutton Bingham - Mon 14 Aug

A pretty profitable visit before work today with a couple of quality patch birds, though no year ticks unfortunately. A quick stop at the northern causeway produced a couple of Common Sandpipers and a very flighty Little Ringed Plover.
A quick drive round to the Fishing Lodge and a further nine Common Sandpipers were present on the dam. The second quality bird of the day came in the form of a Wheatear on the dam before flying and being lost to view.
The supporting cast this morning consisted of a couple of Raven, two Little Egrets and a Kingfisher.
A quick stop on my way home from work this afternoon produced an adult Common Tern off the dam.

Sutton Bingham - Sun 13 Aug

I didn't get a chance to check out Sutton Bingham yesterday, but did pop in for a brief visit this morning. Not much change again this morning from recent visits but Common Sandpipers numbered four birds today. A total of three Kingfishers were seen, including one that was rather obliging.
Just a single Little Egret was seen today and one adult Great Black-backed Gull was still present. A Sand Martin was seen over the dam and a male Sparrowhawk caused a bit of a stir. Finally, a juvenile Bullfinch was seen near the Fishing Lodge.

Sutton Bingham - Fri 11 Aug

More of the same this morning, with two Common Sandpipers present around West Pool probably being the pick. A couple of Sand Martins were noted and two Kingfishers were also seen. Finally, there were still three Little Egrets around the northern end of the reservoir.

Tuesday, 8 August 2017

Sutton Bingham - Tue 8 Aug

A quick pre-work visit today and there was not much happening. The Lapwing was still present on the northern causeway (I failed to locate it on Saturday, but it was present yesterday morning) along with two Common Sandpipers.

Arne RSPB - Mon 7 Aug

A day off work and a trip down to Arne RSPB reserve with the family today. We started off with a walk around Coombe Heath, which was not overly productive though seven Spoonbills were seen in the Middlebeare channel.
Waders were very think on the ground with just a few Black-tailed Godwits and Oystercatchers. A few Little Egrets and several Shelduck were the only other birds on the mud whilst a single Dartford Warbler was heard calling but not seen. Finally, two Common Tern were noted before we headed to the café for a much needed bite to eat.
After our lunch we walked out to Shipstal Point. To be perfectly honest, there was nothing much to be seen. Another couple of Common Terns and a single Sandwich Tern off the beach and several Oystercatcher plus a few Redshank and Curlew on the salt marsh was about it.
Doing the circular route back to the car there were several dragonflies milling around, I could only get a photo of one and it's a Common Darter.
So although it was an enjoyable day out there was not much to be seen on the bird front.

Saturday, 5 August 2017

Sutton Bingham - Sat 5 Aug

A later than usual visit to the reservoir today as I arrived around 10am and as soon as I got out of the car it started raining...hard! A very white Herring Gull was present today, and after the rain cleared I managed a distant record shot of it. Obviously a Herring Gull and nothing rarer, it was none the less an interesting bird.
Also today, a single Common Sandpiper on West Pool whilst a year tick in the form of a Green Sandpiper was present in a private area of the reservoir. A couple of Little Egrets were the only other birds of note this morning, and a brief return visit mid-afternoon failed to add anything. There was no sign today of the Lapwing that had been present for nearly a week.
Sutton Bingham year list 2017 now at 102 species.

Friday, 4 August 2017

Sutton Bingham - Fri 4 Aug

The Lapwing still present off the northern causeway and a single Common Sandpiper on the dam during a brief visit this morning.

Thursday, 3 August 2017

Sutton Bingham - Thu 3 Aug

Present for its fifth day, the Lapwing was again off the northern causeway this morning. Two adult Great Black-backed Gulls were seen from the dam, as was a single Common Sandpiper. Just three Little Egrets were noted during this morning's quick visit.
The Lapwing was still present this afternoon, so decided I'd take a photo this time!
Not a bad looking bird, and you can see that it's a sub-adult from the above photo.

Wednesday, 2 August 2017

Sutton Bingham - Wed 2 Aug

Unbelievably the Lapwing was again present this morning just off the northern causeway and a juvenile Yellow-legged Gull was on a buoy in the middle of West Pool. The rain was pretty constant so I didn't hang around for long, might pop back in later if it clears up!

Tuesday, 1 August 2017

Sutton Bingham - Tue 1 Aug

The Lapwing was again present today, for its third day, though this morning it was just off the northern causeway rather than between the car park and Canoe Club where it had been on the previous two mornings. Two Common Sandpipers were also noted during a quick visit and a Peregrine was atop one of the pylons at the southern end of the reservoir. Finally, there were still a handful of Little Egrets knocking around.
A quick stop in the afternoon produced a juvenile Yellow-legged Gull and an adult Great Black-backed Gull.