Monday, 27 July 2020

Wildlife BCN Summer Leys :: 27 July 2020

Before lockdown my wife's car was booked in for a service and we had to push it back due my travels to work in Russia. Scheduled for my return it was then postponned due to the Covid-19 lockdown. Today was the day for it to eventually get it's service, some five months overdue. We take it back to the garage we bought it from and so we found ourselves in Northampton at 10.00am.

The rain had been falling in Banbury and all the way to Northampton - we therefore had no real plan as to what we'd do. Having handed the car in we opted for a drive and to sit looking at the meadow by the car park at Wildlife Trust BCN's Summer Leys Reserve.

We turned into the car park and the rain had slowed to a few spots; as we parked up, it stopped altogether. We decided that we should make the most of this interlude and jumped out my car, then headed across to the main body of water. From there we could see c.27 swifts, large numbers of common tern, 26 mute swans, 31 cormorant and 19 greylag geese. A few house martin appeared in amongst the swifts. As we peered to the opposite side we spotted a lone green sandpiper, then two great white and four little egrets.

Common tern

The sun decided to make an appearance so we opted to take our chances and go for a bit of a walk. We reached the Paul Britten Hide (looking back towards the Pioneer Hide) and could see a third great white egret, several sand martin and, in one corner, a single oystercatcher. As I took a photo of the great white egret, a grey heron in the background could be seen handling an eel that it had just caught.

We went on further to the next viewing screen, but didn't spot anything more of significance. As we returned to the car park, drops of rain started to fall and as we drove off the rain started falling again - our timing was impecible!

Great white egret

Sightings (30) included: black-headed gull, blackbird, canada goose, carrion crow, common tern, coot, cormorant, goldfinch, great crested grebe, great white egret, green sandpiper, greenfinch, grey heron, greylag goose, house martin, lapwing, little egret, little grebe, long-tailed tit, magpie, mallard, moorhen, mute swan, oystercatcher, sand martin, starling, swift, tufted duck, woodpigeon and wren.

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