Wednesday, 2 March 2016
River Exe Estuary - Avocets, Godwits, & Brent Geese etc 29/2
An early visit to Bowling Green Marsh at Topsham to greet the roosting birds from the high tide on the River Exe. The hide was full by 9:30 of folk awaiting the flocks of birds. A steady stream of Avocets, Godwits, Dunlin and Wigeon flew in to join the Teal, Shelduck, and Curlew. Very large groups of waders and Ducks had assembled when a paraglider flew over and a whole mass of birds took to the air.
Away from the hide towards the screen wall and the field we had our best views yet of Black tailed Godwits some of them phasing into their summer colours. From the screens on the River Exe trail a single Greenshank and several Redshank were feeding on the mud. Had a great view of a Water Rail here as well. At all times huge flocks of Brent Geese flew overhead. A fantastic morning spent at Topsham with some great views of birds.
During the afternoon we ventured to Dawlish Warren reserve and the hide. Unfortunately the tide was now well out but again we had great views of Brent Geese, Stonechat and Linnets on the golf course and a lovely Skylark on the shingle by the hide. From the hide we even got to see a distant seal that had hauled itself out onto a sand bar! Not too many birds seen at the Warren but the coastal scenery and walk more than made up for it.
A total of 56 birds seen for the day including Bar tailed Godwit, Black tailed Godwit, Brent Geese, Greenshank, Snipe, Pintail, Wigeon, Shoveler, Curlew, Shelduck, Avocet, Stonechat, Dunlin, Chiffchaff and Water Rail.
Bar tailed Godwits - good numbers at the back of the water. We don't often see this Godwit so a good tick for us.
Little Egret with fine breeding plumes
Barwits, Wigeon, Shoveler, Curlew, Crow & Moorhen a great variety of birds in one small area.
Black tailed Godwits on the move
Bar tailed Godwits coming into land
On the wing - Black tailed Godwit
Brent Geese flock - hundreds in the sky
Coming into land - Black tailed Godwit
Phasing into summer colours - Black tailed Godwit