A bright morning and out at dawn, hopefully to connect with the Little Ringed Plovers that were seen, and hopefully Wheatears.
I checked Aveley Bay first and located a single Dark Bellied Brent Goose mixed in with the Shelduck at low tide. Also present were a single Curlew, 4 Oystercatchers, 2 Ringed Plovers, 4 Dunlin and 63 Redshank. A good start with the Brent so I headed for the Reserve and did a circuit.
I relocated the Brent Goose again on the Target Pools feeding with Wigeon; I am presuming it was the same bird and also a Tiercel Peregrine in the usual spot.
|Dark Bellied Brent Goose|
|Distant record shot|
Pintail are still present with 12 birds seen including a partial leucistic female, no Golden Plover, looks like they have definitely gone.
|Partial leucistic female Pintail|
Elsewhere around the Reserve I picked up a male Sparrowhawk hunting, at least 9 calling Water Rails, 4 calling Chiffs and at least 7 Little Egrets.
I also heard my first Marsh Frog and good to see 14 Common Snipe in front of the visitor centre.
|Not something you see everyday on the Thames, a Paddle Steamer|
After this I headed for the Stone Barges to search for the ‘white wingers’, 2 Iceland’s had come up in the morning. I was the only one there and there were bloody thousands of Gulls, I gave it 20 minutes and failed miserably to locate one, there’s just too many and I have not got the patience to stand there forever. As mentioned before, try as I might I just can’t get into them unless there Med’s.
I did see one Water Pipit on the Barges coming into summer plumage, a little stunner, surprisingly there only seemed to be the one.
No LRP’s and no Wheatears but a good morning’s birding none the less.