Tuesday 16th April: Redstarts & Warblers

It was another exciting day of spring migration today with more movement on all fronts. The highlight was a whole bevy of COMMON REDSTARTS in Burgess Field. Two were originally found by Dave Doherty this morning and another couple by Ewan Urquhart in the afternoon. This is quite a rare passage migrant for the Patch, certainly less than annual though they are more common elsewhere in the county. In windy conditions this morning the two of them were flitting around the various hawthorn hedges and bushes at the north end of the Nature Reserve. Whilst en route to find them I had the added bonus of hearing and then seeing the first LESSER WHITETHROAT of the year (for the whole county as well as for the Patch). When Liam Langley visited a bit later he managed to find a COMMON WHITETHROAT as well and by late afternoon the total for this warbler had gone up to five thanks to Ewan who also reported 30+ Willow Warblers/Chiffchaffs dotted about the place.

Meanwhile on the floods there was still plenty to look at with a new drake GARGANEY being the star of the show. The BAR-TAILED GODWIT was still about along with 22 BLACK-TAILED GODWITS, 5 DUNLIN, 2 LITTLE-RINGED PLOVERS and 2 OYSTERCATCHERS. On the duck front, numbers are now dwindling fast though there were four SHELDUCK still about.

To finish things off, 6 WHEATEARS were reported up at Godstow (CWL) and Steve Goddard had a female BRAMBLING in his garden, which now seems rather out of place given the huge wave of spring migrants that's now breaking over the Patch. It's all really exciting just now!

I didn't manage any photos of the Redstarts so here's a grab of yesterday's Greenshank

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