Sunday, 24 July 2011

Best Laid Plans of Mice & Men

There was a tentative plan for today, with 'quiet' being the operative word. High on the agenda was lunch with my mates John Gifford and sister Maggie so, apart from getting the washing up done there was just time for a wander around Radipole. That's when the proverbial 'spanner' was strategically place with a call from Darrah announcing the brief appearance of a Stilt Sandpiper on Lodmoor, but not seen since. With little positive to react to it was a continued Plan A where, at Radipole, I came across the long staying

Hooded Merganser once again, now looking extremely drab in eclipse plumage.

There was also a rather good looking Little Grebe feeding young at the Westham Bridge Sluices, and with no further news on the rare American Wader there was a feeling of comfort as I met my lunch dates and headed off to

Coach & Horses at Winterbourne Abbas. An excellent Sunday roast accompanied by a couple of pints of San Miguel, we decided to take a look at the restoration work at the Hardy Monument, but that was before the texts started pouring in from all quarters "Stilt showing well at Lodmoor". Although not quite as avid as myself, but far more knowledgeable about wildlife in general, John & Maggie were very keen to see this bird so we bye-passed the monument

and found a crowd already assembled on the edge of the Moor overlooking the south easterly pools. The bird was still there and showing well, viewed through a telescope, but only intermittently in company with at least 4 Green Sandpipers and a Common Sandpiper.

These photographs are from my archive, as taken at the Ecuasal Salt Lakes, Salinas, Ecuador in 2010, just for illustration purposes. Today's individual was an adult in far smarter plumage than those shown.

It is not known if anyone got any decent shots, but I didn't even bring the camera to bare. The bird in the background of the centre image is a Wilson's Phalarope which would have caused quite a stir had it been there as well!

and as promised, some more of the shots from yesterday.

Adult & juvenile Sandwich Tern (the latter having just devoured a plump Sand-eel).

Get going Mum, I need another one of them!

Up, up and away.

Cor, hope she won't be too long.

Boing said Zebedee, Oystercatcher doing a Highland Fling.

Black-headed Gull