Saturday, April 13, 2013

Messingham migrants......12.04.2013.

After having a particularly crap day at work,Trace and myself decided to have a wander around the reserve at Messingham before tea.The weather wasn't particularly brilliant again,but at least it was dry and a little warmer.Looking for the hoped for Otter's around grebe lake drew a blank,but nearby a northbound flock of 54 Redwing passed overhead.As we made our way past the dipping platform,my first spring migrant of the new season was encountered,a single Chiffchaff,singing its head off.It was a great chance to study its plumage characters in the not than ideal light conditions,with the new bins really showing why they are the best money can buy!.The Chiffie was the first of 8 seen and heard around the reserve today,but was the only warbler species observed,i guess that will all change as soon as we get some southerly air flow.We carried on through the reserve until we reached the main lake and it was here,as on most visits that all the best birds were observed.The best of the sightings here went to a mixed flock of hirundines,which consisted of 10 Sand Martin,1 House Martin and 2 Swallow,really nice to see at last after all the cold weather we have been experiencing.They were watched as they hawked for insects over the water,before they all headed in the same direction,west over the fields.Wildfowl wise,the best bird was a single female Scaup associating with the Aythya flock and gave distant views,but the white blaze at the bill base really stood out.A flock of 36 Wigeon were also present amongst the Teal and Gadwall.The only raptor seen was a single Common Buzzard over the fields to the west of the reserve.Non bird highlights today included some spawning Common Frogs and my first Buff-tailed Bumble-Bees.Some spring colour was provided by the first Marsh Marigolds beginning to flower.A nice visit again to this brilliant little reserve.

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