Sunday, 26 October 2008

Anything for the weekend sir? Lets Dip!....25th and 26th October 2008.

Over this weekend via Kidwelly in west Wales to look for a reported Little Blue Heron and then locally for another Ferruginous Duck in the county at Thornton Reservoir I have dipped (did not see!) twice.

So briefly following news on Friday afternoon of a Little Blue Heron (a first for Britain) was reported at Kidwelly,near Llanelli in west Wales, myself, John, Ben and Carl Baggott drove down to Gwendraeth Estuary early on Saturday morning.
Meeting up with the Warwickshire crew of Neil Howes (desert storm), Tony Shephard, Bob Duckhouse and Colin we searched the surrounding estuary for the next eight hours. Over the day we saw numerous Little Egrets in the nearby salt marsh, but no sign of the "reported" Little Blue Heron.
However we did see a nice 1st winter/male Hen Harrier quartering the marsh, a couple of Peregrines and a Cetti's Warbler was also heard calling in the reed bed behind us.

Although we didn't see the bird it was a good day just for the craic with fellow birders from all over the country.
Hopefully in the near future the bird will show again and maybe we will have a memorable day on the very under watched South and West Wales estuaries?...

Whilst down in Wales John received a text message from Andy Mackay that Andy Smith had found a Ferruginous Duck at Thornton Reservoir. As we couldn't do anything about it at the time I checked the site out the next morning.
Meeting up with John, Allen Pocock, Andy Smith and Andrew Cliff at the dam, there told me that there was no sign of the duck.
After a bit of chit-chat some old Yorkshire duffer came up to us and said he had seen the bird at the far end of the reservoir, so we trooped off in the direction of the sighting.But as usual surprise surprise the bird had disappeared by the time we had got round to the west arm.
At this point I could have lost my temper with the old duffer and called him a stringer, but in hindsight we should have just walked off in a different direction when the old duffer had claimed to see the bird from half a mile away!
Walking back to the car park, I left John to check out Swithland and Cropston Resv but to no avail of the sighting of the duck.
My final port of call of the morning was Cossington Meadows and as usual it was pretty quiet except for a nice 1st winter/male Stonechat near the entrance of the reserve and good numbers of Wigeon, Gadwall and Shoveler on the tern pool.
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