Saturday, 25 August 2012

Pot of Gull'd under the storm

All the thunderstorms of late have carried the promise of something dropping in on the reservoirs out of the clouds.  In a previous post we suggested it was worth checking any tern that was about at the moment - and it certainly proved fruitful this afternoon.  Martin Hodges (previous offences include finding whiskered tern) picked this out and our hopes for an uncommon sandwich tern rapidly faded as Doug and myself too realised we were looking at something far better.  For the full write up see Martin's page here.

This gull-billed tern is a reserve first and is number 268 since the early 60's - no shortage of pictures - some of around 150 taken as it made repeated passes close by the car park hide showing the impressive bill:
Also sat on the wall showing its long black legs:

Also around the res were 3 little gulls and a common tern:

Unfortunately despite getting the news out quickly as soon as we were confident of the ID, only two other regulars managed to get there in time - Jeff Barker and grandson Fergus who managed a quick flypast before it went north and disappeared - along with most other gulls which had arrived in the storm.

A great end to an excellent week which has seen more good greenshank counts - 8 on Wednesday being the second best count in 5 years - with up to 5 birds most days since including today.  All 8 here on Hempholme:

And some great digiscoped images by Roy Vincent:

 2 spotted redshanks on South Marsh East today, with another on Thursday.  2 whimbrel and a ringed plover over today. 6 redshank on the marsh, up to 3 ruff, 3 green sandpiper and 12 snipe:

Roy Vincent:

One common sand around too - RV:

Amongst all the lapwings - RV:

Thursday and today saw ospreys moving through - we managed this shot from O res:

But Bill Eggleton did better with this catch of the day from the river Hull being carted off to Hallytreeholme:

He also got some nice marsh harrier pictures - tag free - so just how many individuals do move through?:

Hobby over Hempholme on Thursday, and an old favourite - egyptian goose back on South Marsh West yesterday:

A grand week all round.