Tuesday, 22 July 2014

St George's Quay & The Dragons

Common darters
Unfortunately, the spectacular weather we're enjoying at the moment doesn't appear to have dragged any particularly exciting birds into the Aldcliffe area.
Setting off from St. George's Quay this morning I made my way along the path to Freeman's Pools. A scan over the water, along the vegetated fringes and on the island turned up just the usual bits and pieces. There were a few dragonflies zipping about however, including emperors, common darters (photographed mating) and brown hawkers.
A walk along Dawson's Bank revealed little to add to the list. Small numbers of lesser black-backed  and herring gulls were on the river along with grey heron, little egret, lapwing, curlew and redshank.
Checking the Lune overlooking Gull Bank it was more of the same really, with just a couple of common sandpipers livening things up. The expected post-breeding mid-summer build-up of greylag and Canada geese was getting off to a noisy start.
The Flood was hosting a lone green sandpiper (as has been the case for a number of days) along with a smattering of lapwing. Several pied wagtails and family parties of goldfinch were feeding around the muddy fringes.

Green sandpiper
A lesser whitethroat showed very well near the Wildfowlers' Pools while the pools themselves held a second green sandpiper (photographed badly; preening by a discarded tyre - lovely!) and a common snipe.
A couple more emperor dragonflies were at Darter Pool where the coots were feeding a newly hatched second-brood chick.

Four-spotted chaser
Frog Pond was birdless bar the 'resident' mute swan pair, but it was positively buzzing with odanata including another emperor, several common darters and a very tatty four-spotted chaser (photographed).

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