28 June 2015

Pagham Harbour RSPB: 28 June

Twitched the Hudsonian Whimbrel at Church Norton. Figured most people would have seen it by now, and at one point I was watching this tenth for Britain on my own. A striking bird once you got your eye in - the pale ground colour on the head created much more contrasting eye-stripes and crown strips, looking almost black and white at times, and the pink basal half to the lower mandible was very bright (after the bird had spent some time bathing). To me the markings appeared finer than those on Eurasian Whimbrel and the bird had colder tone overall. In flight the secondaries and secondary coverts were noticeably pale, contrasting with the darker primaries and primary coverts. Oh, and the dark rump of course. Structurally it appeared longer billed than the two Eurasian Whimbrels but had the same bend at the distal third.

Watched it for a few hours - great scope views but just out of DSLR range. It was finding a lot of food - mainly crabs, which it caught and took to a patch of water to clean before breaking off the limbs and swallowing. Also watched preening for a while. It didn't associate with the 2 Eurasian Whimbrels present and in the evening at high tide it roosted alone.

Poor record shots of Britain's tenth Hudsonian Whimbrel, Pagham Harbour, 28 June

Also in the harbour: 2 Eurasian Whimbrel, 11+ Eurasian Curlew (including a leucistic individual), 25 Black-tailed Godwit, 4 Grey Plover, 11 Northern Lapwing, 4 Ringed Plover, 3 Dunlin, 12 Oystercatcher, 1 ad. Great Crested Grebe, 7+ Little Egret, 8 Shelduck, 1+ Little Tern (as the tide came in) and 2+ Common Tern. Around Church Norton and along the west side 3 Sand Martin, several Barn Swallow, 1-4 Linnet, 1H Reed Warbler, 1f Greenfinch and 2 Common Swift were also logged. A tatty Painted Lady and a Garden Tiger Arctia caja caterpillar were also seen.

Today's leucistic Eurasian Curlew at four or five times the distance of the Hudsonian Whimbrel, hence the even worse pic. Still, I've
never seen one of these before so it deserves a place on the blog.

At Sidlesham Ferry Pool late evening: 1 ad. summer Spotted Redshank, 3 Redshank, 1 Green Sandpiper, 26 Black-tailed Godwit, 22 Avocet, 7 Shelduck, 1 Eurasian Teal and a Kestrel.

No comments:

Post a Comment