So many beautiful things to see (and photograph) around Duchess Pond this morning. The shelduck by all accounts is a rarity here.
Thundery showers were forecast for this part of the country and as not a drop of rain fell during the 5 hours I spent on the Somerset Levels I am in no position to complain about the gloomy light conditions.
I started my birding day at Cheddar Reservoir and the first bird I saw was a kingfisher flying across the lake followed by a common sandpiper. An encouraging start.
My next destination was Catcott Moor on the Avalon Marshes. This was my first ever visit here and I was rewarded with a flock of a dozen cattle egret near the car park.
There were also lots of swallows with many of them perching on a nearby tree.
From the hide I saw gadwall and teal and a single great white egret.
I also saw the flock of cattle egret take to the air and then saw a buzzard on a post which must have scared them. I also had a good view of a snipe.
On my way back to Puxton near Weston-Super-Mare (where my wife had been doing a textile class) I stopped off at Cheddar Reservoir where I saw the common sandpiper again along with a grey wagtail, a small flock of pied wagtails and a great crested grebe.
A very satisfactory day.
It was good to see waders again at New Passage. When we arrived we only saw gulls and 4 grey wagtails. However, after a walk to Severn Beach and a good cup of coffee, waders appeared. Although it was still very warm there was a lot of cloud cover and they were not easy to make out. A curlew and an oystercatcher were easy, redshank were not too difficult either (especially when their red legs stood out against the seaweed) but there were also dunlin and turnstone and maybe even more.