Arriving at Gibraltar Point too early for the cafe and coffee, Brian and I called in at one of theTennyson Sands hides first. We were delighted to find Spoonbills straight away, 17 being present. They were with quite a large group of Grey Lag and Canada Geese There was also a large flock of Black Tailed Godwit and Avocet with a few lapwing. There were a good number of Little Grebes along with a couple of snipe and a few eclipse plumage ducks of various species. Before moving onto the cafe and coffee we paid a quick visit to The Mere Hide and were very pleased to see a couple of Ruff, 4 Spotted Redshank, some Dunlin and a couple of Greenshank. I was especially pleased to be able to get to grips with the spotted red ID: the eye stripe and only the base of the lower mandible being red being particularly noticeable with the longe bill curved down at the tip. They were noticeably pale but what was the real clincher for me was the way they were feeding very busily wading much deeper than the Common Redshank. Although not wonderful quality I have included some images as record shots.
It was time for coffee, feeling pleased with the start of our day. After coffee we wandered down to the bird observatory to look out over the marsh and Wash before walking through the dunes and back to our starting point where we checked out the hides again. One thing we both noticed was the lack of small birds. August is always a quiet time for passerines, but we saw virtually none.
We treated ourselves to lunch in the cafe and then walked out to Lill's Hut and the Wash viewpoint. Here we caught up with the spoonbills again along with a group of seals on the banks of the Haven.
Although not the best for photography, we enjoyed an excellent day's birding.
To view large, please click on an image.