Saturday, 6 May 2017

Summer Leys :: 06 May 2017

Well today was meant to be a visit to RSPB Otmoor to catch up with the turtle dove, recently returned - a better view of a grasshopper warbler wouldn't be turned down either. Instead I read my twitter feed at breakfast and noted that @987jonty was at it again, reporting from Summer Leys. Garganey, grey plover, black terns and wood sandpiper were all mentioned. Quick change of plan!

Got to the main hide to find @987jonty in position and quickly added Greenshankgrey plover [#127] and a single avocet, @987jonty pointing out the wood sandpiper [#128] - he then excused himself as he was north for turtle dove and nightingale, plus he was frozen in the cold wind.

Something flushed the bird right and so we lost sight of the grey plover. We then decided to make a circuit. We then found garden warbler [#129] in the trees not far from the footpath as we kicked off from the hide. We also saw a cuckoo fly right over the top of the main hide. Bullfinch, song thrush, willow warbler, more Whimbrelgarden warblers and a pair of blackcaps kept our spirits high in the chilly wind. Surprisingly quite for chiffchaff compared to the rest of last and this month on other sites.

Next to show was a greenshank [#130] on the far bank. Very distant but a photo confirmed the ID. 5 Black terns were seen over Mary's lake and as we watched at the feeding station a couple of grey plover flew overhead and away from the reserve - hopefully only temporarily.

From the next hide we added a pair of whimbrel [#131], initially well camouflaged in the grass and reeds. As we reached halfway the sedge warblers reached full volume. Sand martins were very active above and when we got to the nesting wall could be seen diving in and hanging on the outside of the holes.

Unfortunately no sign of the garganey so probably just over a ledge and hide from view.

On return to the car we had one last look on the main lake Black ternand again saw a cuckoo, avocet, greenshank and the black terns now over the main lake.

RSPB Otmoor maybe next ...

Sightings (48) today included: avocet, black Tern, black-headed gull, blackbird, blackcap, blue tit, bullfinch, canada goose, carrion crow, chaffinch, chiffchaff, common sandpiper, common tern, coot, cuckoo dunnock, gadwall, garden warbler, goldfinch, great crested grebe, great tit, greenshank, grey plover, greylag goose, jackdaw, lapwing, little egret, magpie, mallard, mute swan, oystercatcher, redshank, reed bunting, robin, rook, sand martin, sedge warbler, song thrush, starling, swallow, swift, teal, tufted duck, whimbrel, wigeon, willow warbler, wood sandpiper and woodpigeon.

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