Sunday, 30 April 2017

Sunday April 30th

A good day in the Tame Valley. A blustery easterly or south-easterly wind resulted in the Valley scoring with a notable influx of waders and also enjoying the product of a national movement of Black Terns, with fewer, less widespread, numbers of Arctics too.

Alvecote Pools
Warks: Six Black-tailed Godwits, six Common Sandpipers, Wheatear, Common Tern (Jon Morgan).
This evening a first-winter Little Gull was on Railway Pool (Bob Duckhouse) and 17 Arctic Terns went NE through Mill Pool at 1825 hrs. Also two Ringed Plovers (Adam Archer).

Ladywalk NR
Nine Garden Warblers, Snipe, fledged Grey Wagtails (Nick Barlow, Pete Sofley). Dunlin, Ringed Plover and a minimum of four Whitethroats (Pete Lichfield).

Middleton RSPB
Staffs: The early birders scored with a Spotted Redshank until 0830 hrs only (Rob Strong) ; three Bar-tailed Godwits, a Sanderling, five Black-tailed Godwits, three Avocets, four Dunlin, eight Ringed Plovers, Whimbrel, a Pintail and two Arctic Terns were all new arrivals (Tom Perrins et al). Later, another Whimbrel flew through (Paul Hyde) and a Grey Plover was reported. Also Whinchat and Wheatear still.
Warks: Whimbrel at Fisher's Mill (Tom Perrins).

Shustoke Res
Eight Black Terns on arrival increased to nine around 1230hrs and they were still present early evening at least, with a fairly constant 30 Common Terns throughout (SMH). Two Arctic Terns passed straight through (Roland Hopkins). Also two Hobbies (Dave Hutton), Raven and two Common Sandpipers (SMH) and four Little Ringed Plovers (James Kenny).

Black Terns
I arrived at Shustoke for a third visit at 1950hrs and noted the Terns flying in a tight non-feeding group. They went back and forth at the east end of the Res before rising gradually to 5-700 feet and appeared to leave in a north-easterly direction. At all times the birds were closely packed and took ten minutes before finally disappearing into the dusk at 2010hrs. Migration in action.

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