Friday, 1 August 2008

Wader fest on the Isle of Grain

A day off work today and an opportunity to visit the marshes in the Allhallows area once again. A very pleasant walk, no cows to hassle me, no rain, but a strong wind that at times made viewing difficult. The walk began as always with a Corn Bunting on the wires near Binney Farm, a few Little Egret flying overhead and still plenty of Ruddy Darters. Having arrived at the fleets and water it was evident that few waders were present though it wasn't yet high tide.
A scattering of Greenshank, and two Green Sandpipers were some compensation but things were looking pretty quiet and the water level had dropped since my last visit of two weeks before. Eventually in the company of Terry and his dog the cumulative counts of waders, ducks etc were as follows.
Green Sandpiper 3
Wood Sandpiper 1
Ruff 4
Blackwit 56
Redshank 30+
Snipe 6
Greenshank 59!!
Garganey 7
Little Egret 18+
Marsh Harrier 2
Hobby 2
The Blackwits were evidently staying in Yantlett creek whereas the Greenshank count of 59 was pretty impressive and I left before high tide!!
Once again an excellent 'longish' walk and some good counts though the birds here are very skittish and have to be viewed sensibly.
At Bluewater in the afternoon, a Peregrine flew high overhead whilst we were protecting our chips from the marauding Canadas!

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