Friday, 14 April 2017

Ring Ouzels on Mersea Island

Shortly after passing the gate at Landguard early this morning, we had a very brief view of a possible female Ring Ouzel. The call was right and a very brief view of the bird on the ground seemed to show silver in the wings. Unfortunately, it took flight almost immediately after landing and headed towards the area around the ranger's cottage. Several searches failed to produce any sightings among the numerous Blackbirds found. The concrete blocks and short cut grass were alive with Wheatears, with at least twelve seen. We again failed to locate the Black Redstart but picked out a single Little Ringed Plover among the Ringed Plovers.

From here we headed back into Essex with a visit to Mersea Island. Parking up at the far end of East Mersea Road, we took the footpath to the sea wall and continued walking until we came to the second paddock. We scanned the paddock but failed to find any Ring Ouzels, however, another Wheatear was found and close by was a stunning male Yellow Wagtail. Then both male Ring Ouzels flew from a nearby Hawthorn bush and began feeding within the paddock. 

They would follow this pattern throughout our three-hour stay. Flying up into the Hawthorn bushes and then dropping back down to feed shortly afterwards. Before leaving my first Swallow of the year was seen hawking low over the grass within the paddock.

A brief visit to Abberton on the way home added another Little Ringed Plover along with a distant Scaup but we failed to locate the Velvet Scoter.

Abberton Reservoir

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