Tuesday, 19 August 2014

An Autumnal August Day at Pennington - 17th August

On a bleak August morning I visited Pennington Marsh in a somewhat (as it turned out) optimistic hope of seeing a passage wader or two. The low tide, strong westerly wind and dense overcast made for a somewhat bird-less visit and I returned home early to gain a few brownie points much to the surprise of Sarah and Tobias; I don't think they expected me home early when time permitted a few hours of free birding time.

Wildfowl numbers are still low with no real sign of an arrival of the usual winter visitors, Shoveler numbers were up to 5 birds and with a single Wigeon being my first of the season. Waders were poorly represented presumably as birds were out on the mudflats feeding rather than on the lagoons. Ringed Plover numbers were up with around 30 birds present as were Grey Plover with around 15 seen including one superb, probable female, summer plumaged bird. Summer plumaged Grey Plover are stunning birds in the mono-chrome spangled dress and this bird gave good views even prompting a 'whats that bird' from one of the local joggers. Turnstone numbers were also up with around 40 birds present, many being in their summer plumage.

Otherwise, a single Northern Wheatear, two Whitethroat and a single Reed Warbler made for a rather poor morning.

Little Grebe feeding in dense Enteromorpha 

Little Egret 

Juvenile Shoveler

Summer plumage Grey Plover, this is probably a female with the slight pale feather scaling within the black underparts and uneven upper edge to this area 

 Ringed Plover, this is a male due to the extent and density of the black head markings. The upperparts and scapulars and wing coverts are very worn 

Summer plumage Turnstone

 First winter Northern Wheatear, identifiable as such due to its fresh apricot flushed plumage and fresh rich buff edges to the wing coverts and secondaries

Juvenile Whitethroat