Tuesday, 8 May 2012

Another Whimbrel

8th May - I arrived at 9am this morning and could see very little of note other than the usual Common Sandpiper and a pair of Shelduck.  I scanned for about 20 minutes and then went to check the meadow.  I was quite surprised then to receive a text from Mick M at 9:30am saying 'Whimbrel on the spit'.  I was on the southern bank and couldn't see one, so I phoned him and he said it was on the far side amongst Egyptian Geese - this part was hidden from me behind the island.  5 minutes later after I walked to the SE corner, I scoped the Whimbrel, which was roosting on one leg with its bill tucked in its back.  Had I missed it earlier? Had it been hidden amongst the geese or had it just flown in?  Anyway, a nice bird to get.  There have been several records of Whimbrel this year - the only 'proper' wader obviously migrating through the site so far this year - and most have been very short stayers or fly overs.  This bird seemed to be fairly settled.  I grabbed a couple of distant record shots and then walked back round to the west side to see if it was closer there for another shot.  However, as I approached the viewpoint, I could hear a Whimbrel calling and though I didn't actually see it leave, I could hear the calls disappearing northwards and the bird was gone.  It was 10:20am, so a stay of at least 50 minutes - slightly longer than usual!

It was a long way away!

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