Saturday, 30 July 2011

Blacktoft - Marsh Sandpiper

It's back to birds then! A collective sigh of relief from all my birding regulars?? Thanks for bearing with me, the insect sessions have been an invaluable diversion during the 'quiet period' and I've now supplemented my existing stock images with plenty more material to create a worthwhile talk on the Dragon/Damsel/Butterfly theme!

Anyway, it was back to basics with a lifer no less! Blacktoft Sands has hosted a Marsh Sandpiper since the 11th July and whilst I kept thinking it's gonna go (whilst stuck at work all week!) once I'd got news it was still there, I was on my way!

2 1/2 hours later and with the crowd in Singleton hide easing, I was on site, on my list almost immediately but a 'disappearing act' behind the reedbed to the right of the hide meant I was not going to get images easily!

It did of course reeappear and given the distance to the nearest margin, the best I could hope for was record quality shots......









That bill could surely never cause an identity crisis and whilst it really shouldn't be confused...... here's the essential Greenshank comparison shot!








Or a Black-tailed Godwit?






How about a Ruff.....






A couple of flight shots....








Undoubtedly the highlight of the day was this closest encounter as it fed in the shallows in front of the hide....










Record shots only but I'll settle for these and 3 - 2 - 1 :-) Quite a few other waders present: Spotted Redshank, Avocet, Green Sandpiper, Common Snipe.... A distant view of Spoonbill and Water Rail, Marsh Harriers, numerous Bearded Tit flying around, a pretty good session!

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