Saturday, 19 April 2014

Early morning visit to Lee Valley

Having visited Fisher's Green on Thursday afternoon and connected with Nightingale, I took the narrow cobbled road of Fisher's Green lane and parked up in the small car park just before the bridge.
I then headed off along the riverside path towards Hall Marsh Scrape. As with the Thursday visit Chiffchaffs were seemingly singing from every available tree.
Blackcaps were again numerous but I didn't manage to pull out a Garden Warbler among them.
On the walk round to the hide overlooking the scrape I flushed a Little Egret from the ditch, and it was present on the scrape when I looked out.

Little Egret

The scrape seemed quiet apart from two Little Egrets, two Lesser Back-backed Gulls a few Gadwall and Mallard. Then a scan of the shingle island produced a single Little Ringed Plover. Sitting motionless on the shingle and without the scope it was difficult to pick out.
From here I moved on to Bowyer's Water, where I picked up a couple of singing Willow Warblers among the numerous Chiffchaffs.
On the walk round the lake, every other bird seemed to be either a Chiffchaff or a Blackcap. On the return leg I managed to get views of my first Common Whitethroat of the year.
A tip off from Brian saw me drive round to Fisher's Green and wander round past the sub station, crossing the bridge and heading back up river to a spot Brian had seen and heard a Lesser Whitethroat earlier.
Sure enough as I waited first the song of a Common and then the sound of a Lesser Whitethroat was heard.
The Common was seen straight away perched up in full view, but the Lesser being much more skulky took some finding. I managed a very brief view as it emerged from scrub and then flew across to the next line of bushes.
On the walk back I bagged another year tick in the form of a Reed Warbler, again plenty were heard but it took some time to pin point the location of a singing bird.

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