Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Alk bits....15.12.12.

Record shot of the Long-billed Dowitcher.

Curlew and Grey Plover.

Golden Plovers and Dunlin.

Golden Plovers at dusk.
With the chance of a full day out today,myself and fellow birding buddy Dave Wright headed out to Alkborough in the hope of getting Dave to connect with the wintering 'Yanks'.We set out bright and early and arrived at our little car parking spot adjacent to the church,getting the kit together and heading down the still icy lane to the flats.A few Redwing and Fieldfare were seen on the walk down,but little else.As we walked down it was apparent that there had been a big tide this morning and the tidal creek was almost overflowing.At the first gap to look onto the main area of water adjacent to the main hide,there he was...the Long-billed Dowitcher,feeding in his favourite corner with his Redshank buddies.And he gave great views today coming pretty close,although still too far to get any decent images,with only a record shot to show for my efforts.We enjoyed great prolonged views and Dave was chuffed to see it at last after several attempts.From the main hide we managed to see a few nice bits which included a couple of very dapper Spotted Redshank,2 Grey Plover and some excellent views of the resident Marsh Harriers,which included an adult male,2nd calendar year male and a couple of adult females and nearby a single Green Sand was seen feeding on a flooded field.After much searching today,we didn't manage to find the wintering Lesser Yellowlegs,but there's always next time.A walk down past the main hide towards the Trent floodbank saw us watching a fantastic wet,partially flooded field which was covered in birds and we enjoyed great views of Curlew,Redshank,Golden Plovers,Snipe,10 Black-tailed Godwit and 4 Ruff.The Ruff consisted of 3 males and a single female and gave nice views through the scope.The afore mentioned Golden Plovers were again impressive,with at least 6000 birds around the flats and the sight and sound was fantastic to say the least,truly amazing and the feature of the day for me.There were also quite a good number of Dunlin feeding in the flooded fields and at least 1 of the previously mentioned Grey Plover.With another visit to the 'Paddocks' today for a superb breakfast and some great birding,another fine visit was enjoyed at this fantastic birding site.

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