Tuesday, 5 August 2014

Sheepwash Mega's!


It's not very often I 'twitch' Sheepwash, but with news of a 3rd record for the site paddling about on the pool, it was time to get moving.
Despite seeing them on every patch visit I was still going to travel across to Great Bridge to look for a male Mandarin Duck that had been found that morning.
From the raised track, it took a while scanning, but eventually, sitting on a half sunken log below the overhanging trees on the west shore was a stunning drake Mandarin! It was fairly distant, and combined with them being common on my patch I didn't try to get many photos other than a quick record shot.

Mark then appeared, and after scanning around, we decided to head over to the mound and as we reached the top, I heard a brief 'reel' from the riverside vegetation. Immediately I knew it was a 'locustella', but it quickly went quiet, and following a very long wait sitting next to the large area of reeds and small plants, it finally piped up again, and reeled briefly a number of times, but still refused to show! But at least it was certain it was now a GRASSHOPPER WARBLER!

Not a bird I had thought I would find at the park, as they're aren't too many dotted about in urban Birmingham.

With a last look at the main pool, an explosion sound flushed the still present Mandarin, and it flew off east, but after a few minutes it returned and dropped onto the 'mud bank'. Sadly, I was on the opposite side of the pool again, and similar to before, I didn't have the willingness to try to find a closer viewpoint, but I took a couple more photos.


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