Thursday 9th April: Wheatear & Redstart

You know that things are hotting up on the Meadow when I do three blog posts in three days! One forgets just how exciting it is at this time of year as new birds start appearing on a daily basis. In fact there was a steady stream of news from the Patch all day. 

It all started with a quick visit first thing this morning where I found the drake GARGANEY still present. What's more I clearly heard a PHEASANT calling from across the river behind the farm - a long overdue year tick. The 3 REDSHANK and 5 SHELDUCK were still about and a LITTLE EGRET was hunting near Burgess Field gate.

Mid morning I got a call from Dave Doherty who'd just found a COMMON REDSTART in Burgess Field. It's always great to get this hard to come by species on the year list for Port Meadow though we've been lucky over the last two or three year with them.

At around midday I got a text from Mary MacDougall to say that there were now two Garganey on the floods with a female having joined the male.

I went out again late afternoon where I met Steve Lavington who'd seen two LITTLE RINGED PLOVER though they'd not stayed long. The three OYSTERCATCHERS were also about but there was no sign of the female Garganey with just the drake still present. I went for a wander through Burgess Field to look for the Redstart but there was no sign of it nor anything else of note apart from a few singing Blackcaps and Chiffchaffs. I ended up walking back around the west side of the floods where I managed to spot a female WHEATEAR as she landed on the shoreline and started feeding. To round things off a single SWALLOW and two SAND MARTINS flew over the floods.

So an exciting three year tick day (Pheasant, Wheatear and Restart). It's all kicking off!

The Wheatear

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