Monday, 27 August 2012

Landguard Point and Abberton Reservoir

I meet Brian at 6.30am and not having any fixed sites in mind, We decide to head for Languard Point in Suffolk.
After an hour and a half we arrive at the car park and set off towards the observatory. Having never been to this site before, I can see why it is good for attracting migrants.
Languard is ideally placed to receive any migrants coming in off the North Sea, Beyond the shingle there's plenty of areas of bramble  and Elder for any birds to find shelter and food. On the walk Linnets are numerous, with plenty of juveniles on show. Heading past the small car park we find two very smart looking Lesser Whitethroats, along with a juvenile Common Whitethroat.
With a recent report of a Spanish Sparrow in the area we check the flocks of House Sparrows, But it's not seen today.
A brief seawatch produces four Common Terns a handful of Gannets Lesser Black-backed , Herring,  and Black headed Gulls and two close fly by Bar-tailed Godwits.
On the shingle foreshore two Wheatears are spotted and three Meadow Pipits are close by. 
Although it's been an enjoyable morning we have little to show for it bird wise, This changes when a Long-tailed Skua appears distantly out at sea, Brian quickly gets the scope on it and follows it as it approaches closer to the shore, until it's so close we only need our bins to follow it.It flies past and heads towards the docks.
Another report later in the day from Wakering Stairs of a single Long-tailed Skua is presumably the same bird.
It's a lifer for myself and Brian and we celebrate with a coffee before heading back towards the car.

From here it's a stop off at Abberton and Layer Breton causeway hoping for a Black Tern. As soon as we leave the car a female Red Crested Pochard is spotted close by. With it's wings heavily clipped. Crossing the road I spot the three Red Breasted Geese that are reported from here quite often.
Scanning the far banks there's a couple of Green Sandpipers and a single Common Sandpiper seen feeding along the waters edge. A further scan reveals at least double figures of Ruff.
A Yellow Wagtail is seen on the concrete bank and Brian picks out a distant female Marsh Harrier perched in a tree at the far side of the reservoir.

Again there are no Black Terns seen, But the Skua is ample consolation.

Red Crested pochard
Red Breasted Goose

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