Monday, 1 June 2015

A wader week

My travels over half-term enabled me to catch up with some common and some rarer members of my favourite family of birds: the waders. Diverse, colourful, and capable of amazing migrations, and, in the case of rare ones, generally untainted by the possibility of escapes from cages like songbirds or collections like the waterfowl!
This stunning summer plumaged Curlew Sandpiper was at Titchfield Haven in Hampshire (#192)
Superb views from the Meon Shore hide
An arctic breeder, Curlew Sandpiper winters mostly in Africa
Also at Titchfield Haven, the Greater Yellowlegs, a very rare vagrant from America - I couldn't resist going back for seconds
The plumage has advanced significantly since I first saw this bird in April. Compare the bolder, darker streaking on the head, neck and flanks with...
...this shot taken on 11th April. They breed in the boreal regions of Canada and Alaska and migrate as far south as South America
Also along the coast from the Yellowlegs, this tiny Red-necked Phalarope (#193) spent a day at Sidlesham Ferry Pool in West Sussex. Here with a much larger Black-tailed Godwit
I arrived late in the day when the bird was distant and against the light. A few pairs breed on the northern and western isles - one fitted with a geolocator clocked up a 16,000-mile round trip during its annual migration, flying from Shetland across the Atlantic via Iceland, south down the eastern  US, across the Caribbean and ending up off the coast of Ecuador and Peru
On leaving Bempton last week, I went to Frampton Marsh in Lincolnshire where a pair of Black-winged Stilts had appeared
This is the female
And here the pair - male on the right. A widespread species across Europe, Asia and the Mediterranean, 'our' birds are thought to come from populations on the near continent
Commoner waders at Frampton included Lapwing...
This Lapwing was at Titchfield Haven
Redshank, Frampton Marsh. A Temminck's Stint and a White-rumped Sand passed through the day after I did!
Avocets seemed to be doing well wherever I went - they were breeding successfully at Blacktoft Sands in Yorkshire, Frampton Marsh in Lincs and Titchfield Haven in Hampshire
This bird at Titchfield, photographed from the same hide as the Curlew Sandpiper at the start of this post, appeared to be making a nest scrape


No comments:

Post a Comment