Thursday, 22 March 2018

Late March 2018

31st March. The first Wheatear of the Spring was discovered on the saltings from Mill Hill. Other birds around were 3 Yellowhammers, 2 Goldeneye, Ring-necked Parakeet and a House Sparrow. A Chiffchaff was singing near the Beach car park.

Yellowhammer, 31st March 2018
Photo - Ben Ward
30th March. Birds around were a Red Kite and a Raven heading south over Croft Marsh, ringtail Hen Harrier heading north, 2 Goldeneye, 2 Pintail and 16 Avocet. A Ring-necked Parakeet was once again making the most of the plantation feeders. The Goosander pair came in to roost on Tennyson Sands around 1825hrs.
 A morning ringing session in East Dunes by Mike Polling and Jenni Godber produced 10 new birds: 3 Dunnock, 6 Great Tit and a Blue Tit; and 3 retrap Great Tit.

Ring-necked Parakeet, 30th March 2018
Photo - Kev Wilson
29th March. Highlights of the day were a pair of Goosander that dropped in on Tennyson Sands late on to roost. The 2 Ravens were seen over the plantation and Old Saltmarsh before heading inland calling loudly. Other birds around included an adult Mediterranean Gull heading south over Croft Marsh, a Brambling, 4 Siskin, 3 Woodcock, 2 Chiffchaff and 14 Corn Buntings. Avocet numbers had increased to 39.

Ravens over Old Saltmarsh, 29th March 2018
Photo - Ben Ward

Brambling, 29th March 2018
Photo - Ben Ward
Sparrowhawk, 29th March 2018
Photo - Stuart Ainsworth

Goosander pair, 29th March 2018
Video - Stuart Ainsworth

Chiffchaff, 29th March 2018
Photo - Kev Wilson
28th March. Highlights were a Green Sandpiper heard over Tennyson Sands and an Adult Mediterranean Gull heading towards the Wash calling at dusk. Around were 44 Siskin, 3 Woodcock, a House Sparrow, Water Rail, Merlin, 2 Treecreeper, 15 Avocet and 14 Corn Bunting.

Fox, 28th March 2018
Photo - Ben Ward

Pink-footed Goose, 28th March 2018
Photo - Ben Ward

Sunset from Harvey's Hide, 28th March 2018
Photo - Ben Ward
27th March. Highlights from around the reserve were 4 Woodcock, 3 Chiffchaff, 2 Treecreeper, 3 Siskin and 2 Corn Bunting. On Tennyson Sands were 17 Avocet and 3 Pintail, while 2 Goldeneye were on the Mere. A Short-eared Owl was seen hunting the Old Saltmarsh.

26th March. In the Plantation were 15 Redwing, 6 Siskin, a Brambling, a Green Woodpecker, a Treecreeper and a Ring-necked Parakeet . A Water Pipit was in flight over Jackson's Marsh. Around were 3 Chiffchaff, a Bullfinch, a Yellowhammer and 2 Woodcock. In the afternoon a Red Kite was seen over Croft Marsh heading North, a Short-eared Owl and Male Hen Harrier were seen over the Saltmarsh.

Red Kite, 26th March 2018
Photo - Stuart Ainsworth
25th March. A Pale-bellied Brent Goose was among the brents on Croft Marsh. On Tennyson's Sands were 2 Mediterranean Gull and 15 Avocet. Around were 11 Woodcock, a Brambling, 22 Redwing, a Bullfinch, a Chiffchaff, 11 Corn Bunting.

Green Woodpecker, 25th March 2018
Video - Stuart Ainsworth

24th March. The first singing Chiffchaffs of the year were noted in the Plantation, West Dunes and Aylmer. A Bullfinch was at Sykes Farm as was female Crossbill. Other birds around were 7 Pink-footed Goose, 3 Pintail, 2 Goldeneye, a Marsh Harrier (north), 61 Redwing, 4 Siskin, 11 Corn Bunting and a Yellowhammer.

23rd March. Highlights of the day were 2 Siskin and a female Brambling in the Plantation, 2 Bullfinch, Egyptian Goose, a Pale-bellied Brent Goose, 3 Buzzard, Merlin, adult Male Hen Harrier. 2 Short-eared Owls were seen hunting the saltmarsh in front of the Visitor Centre around 1700hrs.


Short-eared Owl, 23rd March 2018
Photo - Stuart Ainsworth
22nd March. A Serin was briefly at the feeding station mid-afternoon. The first Red Kite of the year was seen over Greenshank Creek. A party of 3 Crossbill were showing well in North Car Park. Other birds around were 2 Raven, a Woodlark, Chiffchaff, Jay, Redpoll, 15 Siskin, a Brambling, an Egyptian Goose (just about annual on the reserve) and 2 Water Pipit. Over the Old Saltmarsh were an adult male Hen Harrier, a Marsh Harrier and 2 Peregrine.

Male Common Crossbill, 22nd March 2018
Video - Stuart Ainsworth

Male Common Crossbill, 22nd March 2018
Photo - Stuart Ainsworth

Female Common Crossbill, 22nd March 2018
Photo - Stuart Ainsworth

21st March.
Highlights from around the reserve were a Tree Sparrow, Water Pipit, 19 Woodcock, 2 Stonechat, 10 Corn Bunting, Siskin, 2 Merlin, 9000 Knot and 1000 Bar-tailed Godwit. 10 Buzzard passing through. Male Hen Harrier, a Marsh Harrier and a Peregrine were seen on the Old Saltmarsh, a Grey Wagtail was found on the Steeping River and a Sand Martin headed north.
 The first Small Tortoiseshell butterfly of the year was on the wing near Mill Hill.

Small Tortoiseshell near Mill Hill, 21st March 2018.
Photo - Adrian Royle


Special Thanks to Friskney local Andy Rayment for the tip off about the Snowy Owl on Wainfleet Marsh which was relocated by Gib Birders later in the day.
Snowy Owl, Wainfleet Marsh 21st/22nd March 2018
Photo - Stuart Ainsworth




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