A busy period to prepare the reserve for the winter continues
A party of ten Russian White-fronted Geese were joined by another single, they settled on Top New Piece for a time before circling the reserve and dropping onto the Severn sands, the tide moved them off again where they circled the area for twenty minutes, last reported heading North over Hock Ditch.Image from previous yearsOther sightings includedTop New PieceA juvenile Little Stint came in and circled with Ringed Plover and Dunlin but headed back to the Severn, 16 Snipe, 12 Ruff, 48 Lapwing, 63 Wigeon, 460 Teal, 24 Shoveler, 28 Gadwall and a single Swallow. Rushy HideThree Greenshank, 3 Spotted Redshank, 13 Redshank, 1 Snipe, 1 Avocet, 85 Teal, 2 Pintail, female Wigeon with Chiloe hybrid drake.Goose House GroundSeven Ruff circled low and were looking to land, 2 Crane, Cetti's Warbler singing in the hedge, flock of Goldfinch on weed seeds in wildlife corridor.Estuary Tower- 21 Blackcap and 5 Chiffchaff moved along the hedge toward Knott Hide. Tack Piece- 40 Wigeon, 220 Teal, 30 Gadwall and 2 Greenshank South Finger Viewing ScreenLittle Grebe on the settling pool. Duck DecoyLittle Grebe, a few Shoveler and Tufted Duck.Spinney Wood (near Zeiss Hide)Two Treecreeper.Estuary Tower21 Blackcap and 5 Chiffchaff moved along the hedge toward Knott Hide. Tack Piece40 Wigeon, 220 Teal, 30 Gadwall and 2 Greenshank. Middle Point11 White-fronted Geese in flight but headed toward Bottom New Piece. 3 Golden Plover over, juvenile Curlew Sandpiper with 3 Dunlin and 50 Ringed Plover, Great White Egret, 6 Little Egret, 20 Pintail
Tack PieceTwo Greenshank, 1 Ruff, 420+ Teal, 22 Gadwall, lots of passerines in the hedge along the summer walkway.Dumbles/Middle Point foreshorePeregrine on the Royal Drift Wall, 3 juvenile Bar-tailed Godwit, 262 Curlew, 2 juvenile Grey Plover, 8 mobile Ruff in the high tide roost, 57+ Ringed Plover, 130+Dunlin, 7 Little Stints, 1 Sanderling 13 Avocet flying about but hardly settling, immature Spoonbill, Great White Egret, 12 Little Egret, 6 Grey Heron among the Shelduck and gulls.Middle Point5 Yellow Wagtail among the cattle, Stonechat + Wheatear on the fence, Chiffchaffs at Goose House, 3 Reed Warbler, 2 Sedge Warbler and Reed Bunting in the reeds, Skylarks, Pied Wagtail and Meadow Pipits over, 4 Swallow and 3 Sand Martin heading South.Top New Piece/Zeiss HideGreat White Egret on the fleet early morning may have moved to the Severn shore, 4 Ruff, 3 Snipe, c340 Teal, 2 Pintail, 43 Wigeon on the flood, 2 Little Grebe on the fleet. Five of the Avocet flock from the estuary came in.South LakeA rather out of place Black Swan, definitely hasn't flown in from Australia so more likely from a naturalised Dutch colony or released/escaped, 10 Cormorant, 21 Ruff, 89 Black-tailed Godwit, 1 Green Sandpiper, 24 Lapwing, c130 Teal, 50+ Tufted Duck, 1 Redshank. RushyOne Avocet, 3 Spotted Redshank, 10 Redshank, 6 Ruff and c110 Teal.
Another day with new migrants arriving on site or passing through. A Firecrest was feeding in the hedge and willows at the Goose House this morning. Other sightings included.Middle PointA party of 9 Common Tern and a single Arctic Tern downriver, 62 Ringed Plover, 190 Dunlin, 8 Little Stint, 3 Sanderling in a very nervous mobile flock, 4 Bar-tailed Godwit, Great White Egret, 17 Little Egret, 14 Wigeon, 12 Pintail, 96 Shelduck in the Curlew/gull roost over high tide. Goose House FieldMarsh Harrier and three Peregrines seen over this morning.Rushy HideThree Spotted Redshank, 5 Greenshank, 10 Redshank, 60 Teal, 2 Green Sandpiper. South Lake100 Black-tailed Godwit, 22 Ruff, 3 Green Sandpiper, Spotted Redshank, 2 Redshank, 6 Pied Wagtail, 120 Teal, 200 Black-headed Gull.South Finger Filter beds viewing screenBittern in the reeds opposite this morning. Top New PieceSpoonbill, 9 Avocet, 40 Lapwing, 3 Black-tailed Godwit, 5 Redshank, a Greenshank, 400 Teal, 5 Pintail, 30+ Wigeon
A very murky start to the day but still some good birding to be had
The rain and overcast conditions dropped in a few passage birds today, a distant and due to the conditions, rather tricky to study flock of 45 Common/Arctic Terns were settling on the mudflats and pools off Middle Point, at least two Black Tern accompanied them with a Sandwich Tern nearby associating with the Black-headed Gulls. Earlier a Great Skua flew upriver at 0735-0740am. MJMFurther sightings from the hide rounds to 0930am included the following.Middle PointGreat White Egret, flock of Common/Arctic Terns, single Sandwich and 2 Black Terns, Spoonbill and Spotted Redshank flew toward the scrapes, 4 Golden Plover upriver, Wheatear at the point.The DumblesTwo Peregrines.South LakeTwo Green Sandpiper, 27 Ruff (early on but some moved off), 89 Black-tailed Godwit, 2 Redshank, 1 Snipe, 116 Teal, 33 Shoveler, 33 Tufted Duck, 33 Pied Wagtail and 2 drake Pochard. A Kingfisher settled on the perching rail.Rushy HideSpotted Redshank, 13 Redshank, 1 Avocet and 40 Teal on the lower pond. Tack Piece45 Teal and 30+ Gadwall + 4 Black-tailed Godwit. Top New Piece188 Lapwing, 11 Ruff (many of these had probably relocated from South Lake), at least one Snipe, 300+ Teal with Shoveler and Gadwall.Lower DumblesRoss's Goose with the Barnacle Geese.-----------------------Keep an eye on the Twitter account for any retweets and updates throughout the dayhttps://twitter.com/slimbridge_wild
Many of the drake Gadwall (pictured) have now completed the moult from eclipse plumage, this is when they replace feathers to become camouflaged during the flightless period. Fresh smart feathers mean they are looking great, this enables them to show off again so a number of them are displaying to pair up in readiness for the Spring.Other sightings form the hide rounds to 09;30am includeMiddle PointThree Sedge Warbler, and 4 Reed Warbler in the reeds, Wheatear on the fence + Greenshank heard. Spoonbill flew to pool off the Dumbles, Great White Egret fishing in pools, 2 Pintail in the main channel, flocks of Curlew, small waders and Shelduck distant in N section of basin.Tack Piece70 Teal and 30 Gadwall.Rushy200 Teal, 12 Redshank, 10 Ruff, 40 Black-tailed Godwit, single Green Sandpiper and Avocet. South Lake42 Black-tailed Godwi, 4 Ruff and 32 Pied Wagtail on the scrape + Mandarin and 2 Pochard on deep lake.The DumblesPair of adult Peregrine on a kill + immature bird flew N upriver, Crane feeding on the saltpastureTop New Piece400+ Teal with small numbers of Wigeon, Shoveler and Gadwall + single Pintail, 21 Ruff, 10+ Snipe, a few Black-tailed Godwits. Bottom New PieceRoss's Goose with the Barnacle Goose flock. South Finger (Filter) Reedbed walk- 20+ Chiffchaff and 5+ Blackcap.
Our breeding Avocet numbers was down to the last two or three juveniles about the scrapes but a flock of 28 came in on the high tide this morning. A flock of 120+ Dunlin and 41+ Ringed Plover also held two Sanderling, two Little Stint and 2 Curlew Sandpiper, most of them remained on the Dumbles edge over the tide and were distant, hidden in the saltmarsh or hard to see in the heat haze. The DumblesUp to 12 Crane and 8 Yellow Wagtails were following the cattle. Seven Wheatear and three Whinchat were on the fences.Middle Point reeds and hedgesThree Sedge Warbler, 1 Reed Warbler, 1 Willow Warbler, 4 Chiffchaff, GS Woodpecker attempted to fly over estuary, bottled it! Tack Piece86 Teal, 32 Gadwall, 1 Shoveler, 4 Pied + White Wagtail. RushyFour Gadwall, f Wigeon with Chiloe hybrid male, 251 Teal, Spotted Redshank, 8 Ruff, 6 Redshank, 41 Black-tailed Godwit, 5 Snipe, 5 Lapwing, 1 Avocet, 44 Black-headed Gull.South Lake58 Teal, 46 Pied Wagtail!, 48 Black-tailed Godwit, 6 Ruff, 157 Greylag, Cattle Egret, 4 Lapwing, adult Mediterranean Gull, 41 Shoveler, 8 Gadwall, 152 Black-headed Gull, 34 Herring Gull, 3 LBB Gull, 35 Tufted Duck. Top New PieceTwo Spoonbill early morning one returned the other remained on the Dumbles at high tide, Great White Egret with 5 Grey Herons, 19 Ruff, 18 Snipe, 119 Lapwing, 8 juvenile Black-tailed Godwit, 367 Teal, 8 Wigeon, 10 Shoveler, 3 Pintail, 179 Cabada Geese, 1 Green Sandpiper, Fox on a carcass. On elIttle Stint came in over high tide.
A busy reserve today with lots of species to catch up with from the hides
The Bittern has been showing well again at the Zeiss Hide today
Middle PointThe male Bluethroat was seen briefly at 08.20am. Also Reed Buntings, a Sedge Warbler, Kestrel and 3 Great Spotted Woodpeckers.Image courtesy of Paul Taylor via Twitter.Rushy Four Greenshank, 4 Ruff, 7 Blackwit with 150 Teal. Tack PieceTwo Ruff 2 and 87 Teal.Top New PieceImmature Glossy Ibis was feeding on the scrape but moved to the Dumbles, Great White Egret, 2 Grey Heron, 4 Ruff, 12 Lapwing, flock of small waders Dunlin/Ringed Plover trying to settle with a juvenile Little Stint among them. Bottom New PieceRoss's Goose with the Barnacle Geese The Dumbles saltmarshThe Glossy Ibis moved here and joined the immature Spoonbill, 10 Little Egret, 53 Ringed Plover, c100 Dunlin, 2 Sanderling (10+ at low tide), 80+ Curlew, 2 Greenshank, 2 Oystercatcher, 3 Avocet, 13 Pintail, 7 Ruff + the Shelduck/gull roost as the tide rose, some birds headed for the Top New Piece. The Dumbles13 Yellow Wagtail on the southern cross fence + Wheatear and a few Yellow Wagtail at Middle Point/Tack Piece + Wheatear on seawall N of Shepherds Hut Hide, up to 4 Cranes. South Lake Super bunch of 26 Ruff in all sexes and plumages and ages also 91 Blackwit, 231 Teal, 42 Shoveler and 2 Pochard + a Curlew.
BluethroatA quick check of Middle Point whilst passing this morning revealed a few passerines, two Whinchat were being harassed by Reed buntings, a couple of Reed Warblers were calling, two Blue Tit and a Chiffchaff fed in the reeds but best of all was a smart moulting male Bluethroat that appeared atop the reeds for a minute. It was viewable from the Shepherds Hut Hide on the seawall. Probably best to try to view it from here for the best chance of seeing it, if trying your luck please refrain from using playback recordings. Early opening for WWT members from 0815am to 0930am, use normal admissions via the ramp from 0930am.If coming in earlier, please have your membership card ready for checking, thank you.Video of the bird herehttps://twitter.com/i/status/1434786377313423364MJMOther sightings included the following.Middle Point/Dumbles saltmarshJuvenile Curlew Sandpiper and three Sanderling flew past S with a flock of Dunlin and Ringed Plover-all headed to the saltmarsh, seven juvenile Turnstone, 3 Oystercatcher and 6 Ruff in with the Curlew/Shelduck/ gull roost + 13 L Egret and the immature Spoonbill on the shore.Top New PieceTwo Great White Egret, 2 Grey Heron, 500+ Teal, 12 Wigeon, 18 Shoveler, 2 juvenile Ruff with the Lapwing flock. A Bittern was showing from the Van de Bovenkamp Hide.Bottom New PieceRoss' Goose with the Barnacle GeeseRushy HideNow three adult Spotted Redshank roosting on the islands with 4 Greenshank, 4 Black-tailed Godwit, 7 Avocet, 17 Redshank and 2 Snipe + 30 Gadwall, flocks of Teal. Knott HideJuvenile Ruff, 7 Snipe, 2 Little Egret, juvenile Black-tailed Godwit on the Pill Box Pool, a few Reed Warbler, Blackcap and Chiffchaff. Middle Point- 2 Whinchat, 4+ Reed Bunting, 2 Reed Warblers. South Lake26 Ruff (min of 37 on site today), 4 Avocet, a Greenshank, 2 Snipe, c50 Black-tailed Godwit, 2 Green Sandpiper, c60 Teal, c30 Lapwing as well as the duck flocks, Cormorants, Canada and Grelag Geese, Yellow Wagtail with the Pied Wagtails.A Glossy Ibis was seen to arrive from the NE and settled on the wader scrape for a time today.Marsh Tit seen at the North end of the reserve, very scarce these days.
Wild SafarisOne or two Hobby, a few Kestrels and a Bittern on both the morning and afternoon trips, the latter a confiding bird oblivious to the Landrover and trailer, the immature Spoonbill and 6 Avocet were feeding on the Severn also a Spotted Flycatcher and Redstart seen in the hedges this afternoon. Marsh Harrier this morning.Rushy HideTwo adult Spotted Redshank, two Greenshank, Green Sandpiper, 3 Avocet, 1 Ruff, 20 Redshank on the lower pond.Top New Piece39 Lapwing 2 Pintail, 6 Avocet, 2 Ruff, 15 Wigeon, 510 Teal, 5 Shoveler, Great White Egret and a 'new in' Cattle Egret with Longhorn cattle herd. Bottom New PieceRoss's Goose with the Barnacle Goose flock.Knott Hide/Estuary TowerSeven Snipe, 2 Ruff, 3 Black-tailed Godwit, 1 Green Sandpiper, 7 Teal and a Little Egret on the Pill Box Pool early morning.South Lake17 Ruff, 89 Black-tailed Godwit, 19 Pied Wagtail, 42 Lapwing, 90 Teal, 3 drake Pochard among the Tufted Duck flock, feeding flocks of Gadwall and Shoveler.
It has been a busy morning for migrating waders and warblers
There is a chill in the air and our first winter arrivals are starting to appear