26th February

What amazing weather - it's more like summer than late winter! I keep expecting to see Swallows and Sand Martins about as I look through the gull roost each evening.Despite the hot weather the gulling hasn't been too bad though rather tellingly numbers have started to decline dramatically over the last couple of days. What's more, the floods are starting to shrink rather alarmingly in this hot weather so we really need some good prolonged rain to top them up again.

Still we've had another couple of good gulls to add to the tally of what has been a remarkably good couple of months on that front. Firstly there was a huge adult CASPIAN GULL and secondly a lovely adult MEDITERRANEAN GULL. The latter species traditionally has a spring passage through the county in March so it looks like that has come early this year. In fact we've now had 7 different Caspian Gulls and two Mediterranean Gulls as well as countless Yellow-legged Gulls just since the start of the year - it's been a remarkable gulling season.

Adult Caspian Gull courtesy of Thomas Miller
Adult Mediterranean Gull

We've finally started to get some wader action now with up to 8 REDSHANK around the floods, and this evening the OYSTERCATCHER tally had gone up to 3. A single DUNLIN (a year tick) has been around the last couple of days and to top all that we had a brief visit by a CURLEW (a less than annual visitor to the Meadow) though it didn't linger. 

Curlew courtesy of Thomas Miller
In other news Mary MacDougall reported a couple of GREY PARTRIDGE on the Patch as well. As this species actually bred here last year I'm deliberately being vague about the exact location but it's great to have them back again.


  1. I saw a lot of ducks on the lake a few days ago. What are these ? Do you know. They have brown/orange heads with a cream strip over the forehead. Bodies were black/white and grey. Wigeon perhaps , would be interested to know your experienced view.

  2. Yes, those are drake Wigeon, the females are a drabber browny colour