Friday, 26 March 2010

Plovers, Large and Small

I spent a fair bit of the day moving willow brash and making dead hedges today, but at lunchtime I went to the Tern hide. A pair of Little Ringed Plovers are getting really settled just in front of the hide. The male is ringed and is probably the one that nested there last year, although I will have to check the ring details to be sure. They do get remarkably close to the hide and I managed to get this shot of the female, looking a little unhappy just after a shower.

As well as the pair of Little Ringed Plovers there was also a very smart male Ringed Plover and he seemed equally willing to come close to the hide. I suspect it may also be looking at the area as a potential nest site, although less commonly than the smaller species, they do nest on the reserve from time to time.
The Plovers were not the only waders on Ibsley water today, there was a Common Snipe in front of the hide as well. It was feeding in a slightly unusual way, squatting on its haunches it was probing with bill at a very shallow angle under the stones of the shore periodically bobbing almost like a Jack Snipe.
There was also a Green Sandpiper, a flock of 200 Black-tailed Godwit as well as the usual Oystercatcher, Redshank and Lapwing. More excitingly, at least for me as it was my reserve "first", was a Marsh Harrier which flew south to the east of the hide.
Around the Centre and Woodland there are still some Brambling, Lesser Redpoll and several singing Chiffchaff, the birds at the feeders were being frequently harassed by a Sparrowhawk. At the end of the day a pair of Mallard were feeding outside the Woodland hide, not somewhere I have seen any before.
The most interesting other report was of Bittern seen from the Goosander hide, although the Ivy North bird was not reported today I still think these are two different birds.

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