Monday, 20 June 2022

Lake District, June, Day 3

A similar morning to yesterday: overcast and cool, but the forecast is for it to clear up as the day goes on.  Breakfast complete and the pleasure of receiving Father's Day calls from the family, we are now thinking about going out.  Today's plan is a trip to Leighton Moss.  The site bird list is now up to 16.
Although we found 31 bird species at Leighton Moss, things were quiet.  Many summer visitors now skulked in the undergrowth and much singing had finished as eggs were being brooded or chicks fed.  Many waterfowl and waders were away on breeding grounds.  Despite this, however, we had an excellent day, although I was somewhat disappointed at the lack of butterflies and dragonflies, probably because we largely lost the sun.  We did see a red deer, though, right at the end of one of the channels cut through the reeds.  Also, unlike many warblers, cettis warblers were very vocal and we heard 4 and saw one.  It didn't hang around to be photographed, however.  Walking from the car to the Eric Morecambe and Tim Allen Hides on the saltmarsh, our ears were assailed by the racous cacophany coming from the black-headed gull colony.  Visiting the Eric Morcambe hide first the noise became even more strident.  Again there was a disting lack of waders, although resident oystercatchers, redshank and lapwing were present along with good numbers of avocet which were continuing with nesting and rearing chicks despite the unwelcome attention of the black-headed gulls.  A few shelduck and greater black-back gulls were also on the dried up pool to our left beyond which Morecambe was visible in the distance.  Calling in at the Tim Allen hide on the way back to the car the gull colony was closer and looked frenetic.  Although though I knew there were mediterranean gulls nesting with them I couldn't pick any out, unlike our last visit.
Returning to the site at the end of an excellent day it was pleasant to sit outside with a glass of rehydration while I cooked tea.  Later, at 9.00, we walked up to The Tree, a twisted old oak groing out of a limestone outcrop on the fellside, to watch the sunset.  The day finished with a tot of Father's Day Torres 10, excellent.
Images to follow when I get home.

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