Monday, 2 February 2015

Pennington Marsh - 1st February

Its been almost a month since I visited Pennington Marsh and I decided to brave the blasting northerly winds and sub-zero temperatures today. My plan was to spend the morning out birding but come 10:30 I was frozen and the thought of bacon sandwiches sent me scurrying for home - obviously getting soft! I parked at Lower Pennington Lane and did a quick dash out past Shoveler Pools to the jetty, west to passed Butts to Fishtail and then back to the car before sitting overlooking the floods off Lower Pennington Lane for 20 minutes or so. These were the highlights:

Two Rock Pipit fed on the seaweed at the base of the jetty........

......along with six Turnstone which showed well. Always fascinating birds to watch as they flip debris along the shoreline. I particularly like the last photo of a bird peering beneath a pebble.

The tide was very high and the saltmarsh was largely underwater and hence many of the waders were up and flying around as they were pushed off usual roosting sites.


Mixed flock of Grey Plover, Knot, Turnstone and Bar-tailed Godwit. The third bird from the right, a Bar-tailed Godwit, is in almost full summer plumage.

Also in summer plumage was this Great-crested Grebe just offshore at Butts Lagoon.

The saltmarsh was largely flooded during the high tide and these Brent Geese foraged in belly deep water. The left had bird is a first winter, the pale edges to the wing coverts still visible.

There were many Canada Geese on the saltmarsh including these two birds with extensive white on their foreheads.

A Peregrine kept harassing the birds at the site but it seemed to be for fun rather than with any real intent to capture prey.

Mixed flock of Wigeon, Pintail and Shoveler on the floods at Pennington Marsh.

Buzzard with full crop flew low over Pennington Marsh putting up many of the birds

There were large numbers of Golden Plover on the floods at Pennington Marsh with around 500-700 birds. Unfortunately they were always in poor light and a little distant for decent photographs. There were also six Ruff amongst the gathered masses.