Wigeon grazing thanks to summer sheep

Male wigeon

On Sunday afternoon I counted 11 wigeon across from the Ramsar hide. Four were up on the cut, grazing on the fresh grass. Droppings from the Jacob’s sheep we had grazing this wet meadow last summer have added nutrients to the soil bringing up more grass to feed grazing ducks and geese. It’s great to see more grass growth adding to the sedge and reeds in the area.  The increase in the number of wigeon and the fact they are grazing indicates our habitat management is working. We will be trialling cattle grazing on the wet meadow this summer.  The cattle should be able to eat some of the tougher plants the sheep were avoiding.

 

Recent sightings by WWT wardens.

Tues Jan 8

Arun Riverlife Lagoon: 6 pochard, 2 tufted ducks, grey heron, 1 kingfisher, 11 teal.

Scrape hide: 16 teal, 1 little grebe, 2 gadwall, 7 shoveler, 2 shelducks, water rail.

Sand Martin hide: 15 shelducks, 5 lapwings, 1 grey heron, 5 shoveler, 4 teal, 5 gadwall, 5 wigeon, 3 pochard, 1 little grebe, 1 tufted duck.

Ramsar hide: 5 cormorants, 3 teal, 3 lapwing, and 14 snipe.

Wed 9 Jan

Sand Martin /Ramsar hides: 3 cormorants, 3 lapwing, 15 teal, 1 grey heron, 3 gadwall, 1 little egeret, 3 kingfisher, 16 shelduck, 6 shoveler, 1 snipe.

Scrape hide: 13 teal, 12 shoveler. 2 shelduck, 2 gadwall, 1 little grebe, 1 kingfisher.

Offham hangaer: 3 buzzards.

Reedbed hide: bullfinches.

Woodland Lodge hide: water rail.

Arun Riverlife lagoon: 5 tufted duck, 6 pochard, 2 teal.

Thurs 10 Jan

Arun Riverlife lagoon: 5 pochard, 2 tufted ducks, 1 cormorant, 2 gadwall.

Scrape hide: 21 teal, 10 shoveler, 2 shelduck.

Sand Martin hide: 4 gadwall, 18 teal, 3 mandarin, 6 lapwing, 21 shelduck, and kingfisher.

Ramsar hide: grey heron, little egret, 1 cormorant, 12 teal, 2 lapwing, 7 snipe.

Fri 11 Jan

Ramsar /Sand Martin hides: 4 wigeoon, 10 snipe, 3 cormorants, 2 grey herons, 12 teal, 4 pochard, 16 shelducks, 1 pintail, 4 tufted ducks, 2 lapwing, 1 little grebe. 1 little egret, 4 tufted ducks.

Lapwing hide: 1 shoveler.

Scrape hide: 1 water rail, 23 teal, 1 little grebe, 4 snipe, 6 shoveler, 1 shelduck.

Arun Roverlife lagoon: 10 tufted ducks, 11 pochard, 6 teal.

Sat 12 Jan

Arun Riverlife lagoon: 16 pochards, 2 gadwall, 12 tufted ducks

Reedswamp area: 1 water rail.

Scrape hide: 1 water rail, 8 shoveler, 18 teal, 5 gadwal. 2 shelduck.

Sand Martin hide: 16 shelduck, 7 gadwall, 1 grey heron, 3 shoveler, 1 lapwing, 1 kingfisher.

Ramsar hide: 4 cormorants, 1 tufted duck, 10 snipe.

Offham hangar: 1 buzzard.

Lapwing hide: 1 teal, 1 cormorant.

Sun 13 Jan

Ramsar hide: 11 wigeon, 4 lapwing, 17 snipe, 4 pochard.

Lapwing hide: 5 bullfinches, 7 siskin.

Scrape hide: 27 teal, 10 shoveler, 6 snipe.

Arun Riverlife: 11 pochard.