I was on site at 8am under a brolly, as the rain was persistent, though not heavy. The wind was easterly, but quite light. I left at 9:30am, as very little was happening. Of note in this first stint was a Hobby that buzzed the end of the spit in the rain before departing and a Cuckoo calling late on from the northern side. A Reed Warbler could be heard singing from the reeds at the base of the spit, a pair of Shelduck and the lingering male Wigeon.
I returned at 11:30am when the rain had stopped and there were signs of brightness, though it was still quite murky. 2 Dunlin had arrived during this time and were feeding towards the end of the near spit. They were moulting into summer plumage, with 1 bird slightly more advance than the other. I took a few record shots through the gloom:
|The back bird more advanced than the front|
|More advanced moult|
|Less advanced moult|
A Hobby went over north at about 2pm and a Common Sandpiper flew around the lake, seemingly avoiding landing on the spit. 30 minutes later I was getting ready to leave when I happened to glance up and see 2 mid-sized brown birds flying over going NW into the NW corner. A quick look through bins confirmed these as Whimbrel - they could have so easily been missed, as they didn't call once.
I then left for the school pick-up, but thought with a few minutes spare I would check the local paddocks - good move, because a lovely male Whinchat was feeding around the horse manure piles in the bottom of the valley. 3 Wheatear were also nearby. I had to dash, which was unfortunate, because later visitors found a further Whinchat and Wheatear - ah well.