for tracking purposes only.
The birds of
Cheltenham Diver 10th
RSPB Criuse, Exe 9th
Slimbridge 26th & 27th
Garden Sparrowhawk 8th
Portishead & Chew 7th
Cheltenham & Highnam 1st
Brownsea Island 27th September 2015
We went on a coach trip with Applgates to Brownsea Island. We caught the Greenslades boat from Poole Quay over to the Island. Unfortunately we only had the afternoon on Brownsea, as it takes quite a while to get there. We went to the hides to see the Spoonbills, but they spent all the time we were there asleep on the lagoon. We then popped down to the Villa to see the Red Squirrels. We must have just missed them as I saw one running off and we were told there had been about 8 there. After waiting for quite a while we saw at least 4 Red Squirrels around the feeding station. On our way back to the pier we had one last look in the hides & the Spoonbills were still alseep. We a few waders such Oystercatchers, Avocets, Redshanks and Dunlin. We then caught the boat back to Poole Quay and ready for the journey back to the Thornbury. A very enjoyable day, but a lot of travelling.
Slimbridge WWT 19th September 2015
We went to Slimbridge WWT for a couple of hours on Saturday for the Black Tern. The Juvenile was still present on South Lake although was very active in flight and didn't perch. It was very misty, so my photos were not a sharp as I would have liked. We went down to the Kingfisher Hide to look for the Purple Heron and some of the people were out with the volunteer wardens looking for it, including Mum, who had got there before us. Dad & I looked from the Kingfisher Hide, but despite searching up & down the reedbed there was no sign of it at all. On our way to the visitor centre for some lunch, Dad spotted a Dragonfly that looked like it might have been an Emperor. However, this was a Male Migrant Hawker perched on a twig. In the same reedbed was a Juvenile Sedge Warbler feeding up before travelling to Africa for the first time. After lunch we went to the Martin Smith Hide where there was a Grey Heron & a Little Egret. There were 2 of the GCP Cranes feeding & sitting on the Tack Piece. A few late Butterflies were nectaring on flowers like Red Admiral & Comma.
Our final port of call was Robbie Garnett Hide which was where Knot was found with a couple of Black -
Slimbridge WWT 6th September 2015
We went to Slimbridge WWT to go on the early morning Landrover Safari and almost immediately after entring the reserve we spotted a Green Sandpiper & a Greenshank. We managed to see the Crane family on the reserve before they flew off & out of the view. We saw a couple of Whinchats on their migration back to Africa along the edge of the Severn Estuary. There were a few Raptors about the reserve including Buzzards, Kestrel, Marsh Harrier & Sparrowhawk. We had a good view of a perched Sparrowhawk on a post at one of the lakes on the reserve. It was a Adult Female. Meanwhile Dad was down at Martin Smith watching Yellow Wagtails, Water Rail & a Kingfisher and from the Holden Tower was a Juvenile Prergrine Falcon. GRR!!! However when went to the Holden Tower we saw a Ruff, Wren, Reed Warblers & a Lesser Whitethroat but sadly no Peregrine. We popped to the Martin Smith hide and after a bit of a wait, the Water Rail made a couple of appearances in and out of the reeds. After about an hour or so the Kingfisher appeared & sat on a post in between fishing duties. Finally on the Rushy Pen were some Black -
Cornwall 10th -
We went down to Cornwall for the weekend and stayed in a hotel at Penzance. After arrival we saw some Turnstones around the harbour carpark while we had our tea. It was a lovely evening & we wondered what tomorrow might bring for our crossing to Scilly, as the forecast didn’t sound too good!
The following the day we got up quite early to catch the Scillonian III from Penzance to St Mary's on the Isles of Scilly. It was very misty, but at least the rain kept off for our crossing.We saw a few seabirds on route including European Shag, Gannets, Manx Shearwaters [distant], Balearic Shearwaters & Sooty Shearwaters which was another new tick for me. As well as Dolphin and a Heron, which was odd to see out at sea.
We had a couple of hours to explore the island but sadly not all of it. A couple of Wheatears were on their way back to Africa. Also a Rock Pipit & some Sandwich Terns mixed in with Black -
There were some more Turnstones around the harbour at St Mary's. Some even still showed a trace of their orangy Summer Plumage that gives them the full name of Ruddy Turnstone. Others however had already moulted into Winter Plumage. We saw one of the Turnstones feeding on a crab. It was starting to rain a bit so we got back on the Scillonian III. Everybody had gone inside but we decided to brave the rain and stay outside. We found a bit of shelter under a canopy by the stairs. A few other people joined us. It was very wet and rough going back but still enjoyable, and the birds were still about. We got back to Penzance and decided to have a meal downstairs in our hotel rather than going anywhere else in the rain.
Common Redshank [Winter]
Black Tern [Juvenile]
Sedge Warbler [Juvenile]
Sedge Warbler [Juvenile]
Sedge Warbler [Juvenile]
Migrant Hawker [Male]
Sooty Shearwater [Juveniles]
Gannet [3rd Year]
Gannet [2nd Year
Gannet [2nd & 1st Year]
We started our final day in Cornwall at Marazion Beach looking at waders. There were Ringed Plovers, Sanderlings, Dunlin, Turnstones & Little Stint [which I missed.] We went to the Hayle Estuary to see what birds were about as the tide was out. A couple of Little Egrets, Greeenshanks, Oystercatcher, various ducks & Bar -
We were our way to Lizard Point when we stopped at Marazion Marsh RSPB to look on Long Rock Pool. We managed to see the Garganey with a few other widfowl. The bird was aged as young drake by the green speculum when it flapped it's wings. We went to the Lizard to look for the Choughs. They didn’t nest in their usual site this year and they hadn’t been spotted yet today as there was nothine on the list.We saw a Grey Seal swimming in the sea below the viewpoint and some hauled out on the rock. We heard the Choughs calling before we saw them. The Pair were sitting on the clifftop opposite us. The warden looked through his scope at the legrings and told us the Male with a green & white ring on the leg is called George. The Female with no rings on the legs is Nora. The youngsters have disbursed from the nest site and gone eslewhere, so we never saw them. We walked along the cliff and we managed to get a close view of the Chough pair feeding around the clifftops. There were also few more Grey Seals lay out on the rocks including a Female called Archalady. Also a couple Rabbits were grazing around the Lizard. We then went to Porthgwarra to see what was there. There was a few Shags flying past the cliffs as well as Gannets and some distant Shearwaters. A couple of Wheatears of note as well. We went to Botallack where they filmed the Poldark series and we even saw the mine that was featured in the series. The birdlife was good as well including Goldfinches, Raven, Whinchat, Dunnock, Swallow, Stonechats and a flyover Chough.
Garganey [Juvenile Male]
Northern Wheatear [Female]
Mediterranean & Black -
Ringed Plover [Juvenile]
Mediterranean Gull [Winter]
Grey Wagtail [Female]
Reed Warbler [Juvenile]
Lesser Whitethroat [Juvenile]
Juvenile Barn Swallow being fed