Sunday 1 January
The first day of the new year and it's, unexpectedly, not raining! Still cloudy and very windy but take a chance and go for a walk down Workmans Lane on the southern end of Warsash village and, with the tide now receding, take a walk along the Solent shore as far as the Meandering Pool and Scrape before returning along the beach an up Cowes Lane to the car. Suitably clothed, so a most enjoyable couple of hours plus for the four miles and rewarded with 27 species. But a lot but some surprising observations.
Right at the start the Carrion Crows were moving about along with the first of over twenty Magpies to be seen. But right in front of me a feeding family of 9 Long-tailed Tits and very soon both Great and Blue Tits were recorded. Then, aside a very large section of the flooded horse field, no less than 25 Oystercatchers resting/feeding alongside a score of Black-headed Gulls.
|Oystercatchers Haematopus ostralegus with Black-headed Gulls Larus ridibundus|
A little further on down the lane a mall area of flood on the field on the opposite side of the lane held 38 Brent Geese and 40 Black-tailed Godwits. Next a Blackbird and resting on the front of the large nest box erected on a tree in the hedgerow a Little Owl. That's my first recording of this species since returning to the UK around this time last year. A short walk inside the horse field produced more Carrion Crows and a Pied Wagtail whilst, in the far distance, a Great Spotted Woodpecker was happily drumming away.
|Little Owl Athene noctua|
On down to the end of the lane and the Solent shore where very many more Brent Geese were observed. Two Little Egrets along with a single Redshank and a further thirty Oystercatchers were noted plus a dozen Herring Gulls as I walked along the shore, with a couple of Jackdaw flying overhead, to the Meandering Pool where I observed four Gadwall before continuing on to the Scrape. Once at the Scrape many birds to be seen including 60 Canada Geese. A few Teal to the right and left of the water along with a handful of Mallard. But at the back of the water well over 50 Pintail to bring a welcome smile to the face. Then back to checking the birds actually on the water where I found a single Shelduck and a male Pochard off to the right behind the reeds. Not a large total but a good start with birds that on many a year have kept me waiting for weeks if not months.
Canada Goose, Brent Goose, Shelduck, Gadwall, Mallard, Teal, Pintail, Pochard, Cormorant, Little Egret, Oystercatcher, Black-tailed Godwit, Redshank, Black-headed Gull, Herring Gull, Woodpigeon, Little Owl, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Pied Wagtail, Blackbird, Long-tailed Tit, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Magpie, Jackdaw, Carrion Crow, Starling.
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