Friday 30 June 2017

Med Gulls, Hobby and more Waders

No pics from today as I'm pushed for time so just a few notes!

A morning visit to Black Hole Marsh yielded a stunning adult summer Med Gull which stayed for all of 10 seconds before heading West over Seaton. 3 Common Sandpipers were still present as were the 2 juvenile Black-headed Gulls, 1 of which has been here since at least Tuesday and the 2nd from Wednesday. Also seen was a juvenile Green Woodpecker and at least 8 Kestrels all on view at once thanks to two successful breeding pairs.

Another visit to BHM early evening yielded another Med Gull, this time a juvenile. We likely had 5+ Med Gulls here today but none lingered (Ian Mc had 3 on the estuary at other times of the day and also a Greenshank). As I left the site I had a relatively close encounter with a Hobby, with one perched briefly. I've seen dozens of Hobby here over the years but this was the first to perch up fairly close; needless to say my camera was in its bag (rare)! I mentioned it in a recent post and it is now looking more and more likely that they are breeding fairly locally.

An 8pm walk proved worthwhile and yielded our first Green Sandpiper of the 'Autumn' here with one on Black Hole Marsh, along with 4 Common Sands and a single Dunlin.

Lots of pics to post here when time permits. Any Colyton Wildlife Twitter followers will know that I had an interesting encounter with a juvenile Kestrel recently...

Click on this pic then zoom up to enlarge. It's worth it if you like detail!

Tuesday 27 June 2017

Kestrels and a Kite

I saw a Red Kite heading West over Colyford at 12:10, a scruffy individual so not one of the other recent birds I've seen locally. I'm seeing them/more every few days at the moment so it makes me wonder where they are lingering...

All 5 Kestrel chicks from the nest box near to Discovery Hut have now been on the wing and affording nice views at times.

Wader numbers are still increasing with 21 Redshank and 10 Lapwing on Black Hole Marsh at 21:00 last night (26th).

The bird on the left of the pic was the last to fledge

Friday 23 June 2017

Hobby, Red Kite & More Waders

Slightly late news but Wednesday 21st yielded Hobby, Red Kite (50th of the year for me although a small chance it was a lingering bird that I've seen before), 10 Redshank, 10 Black-tailed Godwit, 9 Curlew and also a Teal.

I took a few ropey pics of the Hobby and it looks VERY much like (one of) the bird(s) I saw just South of BHM on 6th June. Breeding locally perhaps? I used to see Hobby almost daily by the River Coly (Colyton) in summers pre 2010 but they've been a little less reliable in recent years. Hopefully there is a pair nearby!

Wednesday 21 June 2017

Kestrel Fledglings

2 of the 5 Kestrels in a nest box near Black Hole Marsh fledged in the morning of 20th June. Photos were challenging due to heat haze but it was great to witness the first flights of these birds. Another visit to the marshes in the evening yielded some surprises in the form of 10 Redshank on BHM as well as 3 Curlew and 4 Lapwing flying along the estuary.

Sunday 18 June 2017

More Red Kites

I've been looking up regularly over the last few days hoping for some raptor movement and this paid off this morning with 3 Red Kites over Black Hole Marsh between 09:04 - 09:10. The 3rd bird showed very well indeed, perhaps closer than any I saw of the 60+ birds we had on 24th - 25th May.

Thursday 8 June 2017

Another Hobby (or 2)

Despite many hours searching between BHM & Colyford Common, I failed to see the Red-backed Shrike which was reported on the 5th. Most interesting things seen in the heavy rain was a Slow Worm and a family of Weasels; surprisingly these were the first Weasels I've seen here (seen lots of Stoats, Mink and a few Polecats).

On 6th June I had 1 (likely 2) Hobby over the field South of BHM. I only saw the rear profile of the 2nd bird so couldn't be 100% sure it was a Hobby but it probably was; a decent number of them through here this Spring. A long way off but here is a snap of it:

On 7th June there were 18 Black-tailed Godwits on BHM in the evening and they were still there today.