Saturday, 6 April 2013

Hares at Elmley Marshes

Spent the morning down at Elmley Marshes today. With the drive along the entrance track the most rewarding.
Arriving around 7.30 and with no sign of any other cars, we were able to take our time on the drive down to the reserve car park.
No sign of any new arrivals having dropped in over night, so we make do with the numerous Lapwings and  Redshanks. Good numbers of Meadow Pipits and Skylarks and Snipe are also showing well.
Up ahead we catch sight of a group of Hares zipping around the track edges, shortly afterwards they appear on the track itself and a pair start to "box". Fantastic sight and the first time I have ever witnessed it.
I only managed the shot below, but it was fantastic to watch them.
The walk down to the Wellmarsh Hide was on the whole uneventful. Water levels in front of the hide were on the high side, but there's good numbers of Black-tailed Godwits and Dunlin present. Avocets, Wigeon, Shelduck and Teal are also on view. Three Marsh Harriers also put in an appearance.
On the return drive along the track a male Merlin is spotted perched on a fence post, it takes flight as we approach before any photo's can be taken.


A quick call in at Wanstead on the way home, and a search for the recently reported Little Ringed Plover. With no sign it's off to Lee Valley and a quick scan of the small islands on Hall Marsh Scrape produces the sought after LRP.

Another enjoyable morning again today, with the "boxing" Hares being the highlight.

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