Wednesday, 16 July 2014

Wading In

Had an enjoyable couple of hours out birding Aldcliffe this morning. I was hoping for some interesting waders on the pools but there was a fair bit of sheep-and-farmer activity around the patch so I expect anything 'good' had long one by the time I got there.
There was nothing on the muddy upper ponds at Freeman's Pools, despite it looking really good for probing bills... Indeed the only thing of note here was the newly arrived pony of dubious origin and ownership that had appeared in the bank-side strip of land. An amount of major damage had been kindly inflicted on the fence and gate in order to get it there... nice.
The pools were relatively quiet with most the usual suspects present: mallard, tufted duck, coot, moorhen, mute swan and little grebe (4 adult, 1 juv). There were lots of sand and house martins and a few swallows feeding over the water.
Frog Pond and Darter Pool were harbouring nothing of note, and the Wildfowlers' Pools had been sheeped-out completely.

Common sandpiper
A lone green sandpiper was feeding on the Flood, along with a handful of lapwing.
Checking the Lune off Cadaver Corner I noted my first post-breeding dunlin flock. 22 birds were present. Also here were 13 common sandpiper and a single little ringed plover. Redshank, lapwing and curlew numbers are starting to build up significantly, as are the number of black-headed gulls.
A lone duck eider was on the river and a couple of good-sized shelduck crรจches implied a pretty good breeding season. Little egrets certainly weren't in short supply with ones and twos pretty much wherever I pointed my bins!      

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