Tuesday 4 April
A beautiful sunny start to the day with clear blue skies and a light wind so, despite it being a full high tide, I decided that outside was better than in the house and took the long walk along Warsash shore and on down to the Spit and Southampton Water. From there along the coast to the Meandering Pool before returning home almost two and a half hours later.
|Roe Deer Capreolus capreolus at the back of the Scrape
The walk to the Spit was almost devoid of birds with just a dozen or so Black-headed Gulls, a single Rock Dove and a few foraging Carrion Crows. Once in the sheltered side of the Spit a trio of Gadwall with a pair of Mallard and seven resting Ringed Plover accompany the few Black-headed Gulls. At the far end a pair of Mute Swans.
|Six of the seven Ringed Plovers Charadrius hiaticula
Approaching the small spinney the first of a number of calling Cetti's Warblers and then a Long-tailed Tit. Continuing on towards the Scrape first a couple of Stonechat and then the first of two Little Egrets to be seen in the area. A Magpie crossed the open meadow followed by 50 Starlings and, nearer at hand, a couple of Carrion Crow. A small number of Linnets were moving about and, above, singing Sky Larks.
|Carrion Crow Corvus corone
Once at the Scrape I was able to check the large number of resting birds at the back of the water, mainly Black-headed Gulls but also almost a score of Shelduck, To the left a small number of Curlew and at the far end 16 Black-tailed Godwits and a couple of Wigeon. On the water Mallards and a few Gadwall along with a pair of Little Grebe. A closer looked at the resting birds produced, along with the quartet of Canada Geese, a couple of Oystercatchers and at at least three Mediterranean Gulls. On the raft a pair of sleeping Herring Gulls with a third, immature, individual on the water nearby.
|Mainly Black-headed Gulls Larus ridibundus and Shelduck Tadorna tadorna
Moving on a first Woodpigeon of the morning and another Magpie along with more Starlings. At the back of the gorse area a resting small brown bird turned out to be a female Dartford Warbler.
|Distant record shot of a female Dartford Warbler Sylvia undata
Approaching the Meandering Pool a good view of a Wheatear and then a resting Shelduck with a nearby Avocet. A quartet of Teal were also observed along with a Little Egret and more Black-headed Gulls. A second (or was it the first?) Wheatear was found at the far end of the grass in front on the pool.
|Wheatear Oenanthe oenanthe
Making my return journey, a hovering Kestrel was recoded near the Scrape and then, near the spinney, Blackbird, Chiffchaff and Great Tit were added to the morning's list. In front of the Spit, the only Brent Goose of the morning and then a couple of more Blackbirds, more singing Cetti's Warblers and finally a single Blue Tit as I approached the sailing Club and almost home.
|Brent Goose Branta bernicla
Brent Goose, Canada Goose, Mute Swan, Shelduck, Wigeon, Gadwall, Mallard, Teal, Little Grebe, Little Egret, Kestrel, Oystercatcher, Avocet, Ringed Plover, Black-tailed Godwit, Curlew, Mediterranean Gull, Black-headed Gull, Herring Gull, Rock Dove, Woodpigeon, Skylark, Stonechat, Wheatear, Blackbird, Cetti's Warbler, Dartford Warbler, Chiffchaff, Long-tailed Tit, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Magpie, Jackdaw, Carrion Crow, Starling, Linnet.
|Avocet Recurvirostra avosetta
|Gadwall Anas strepera
|Distant Linnet Carduelis cannabina
|Black-headed Gull L.ridibundus with Little Egret Egretta garzetta
|Shelduck T.tadorna with Avocet R.avosetta
|Distant female Stonechat Saxicola torquatus