Archives for: April 2017, 29

2017-04-29

April the hottest since 1902 weather records show

Permalink 17:57:28, Categories: Observation by Howard  

The weather this last month has got its own back with unseasonable highs after the extremely wet and cool spring; I recorded 48c plus once this month according to my own personal weather sensor (my telephone) - mid 30c are normal for this time of the year. However surprisingly there are still quite a few migrants passing at local green wet spots while in contrast the shore has become bit of a ghost town other than for the odd lone wader and the locally breeding Terns, Herons and Egrets. For these local breeders it is more a place of refuge away from tending active nests. Things will start to get interesting on the shore again once fledged young join these adults. Surprisingly also some waders will also by then have started to return.

However in the meantime .......... Inland it is permanent water that is currently the key to finding birds be it from a simple drip line on a vegetable plot, a drainage ditch or to the environs of one of our ponds in our limited and decreasing wetland areas.

As a consequence on my last few field trips out I have ignored many of our better known wintering hot spots instead favoring those with water that I know will produce locally breeding or late migrant birds. Have I missed stuff as a consequence, probably yes.

Starting with a species that I have not seen since 1992

Black-winged Pratincole
Black-winged  Pratincole

Collared Pratincole the most frequently seen
Collared Pratincole

Having seen the two species in quick succession it was possible to make a photo composite for comparative purposes always useful in these circumstance as it becomes immediately clear just how much the two species vary in structure alone. Relative scale had to be guessed but was based on maintaining the eye level alignments and that of the bottom of the breast and junction of the leg.

Black-winged left and Collared Pratincole right
Black-winged and Collared Pratincoles

Cream-coloured Couser
Cream-coloured Couser

Cream-coloured Couser

Cream-coloured Couser

Yellow Wagtail
Yellow Wagtail

Yellow Wagtail

Wood Sandpiper in fact one of many seen - a species that has been extremely common this year
Wood Sandpiper

Upchers Warbler
Upchers Warbler

Turtle Dove
Turtle Dove

Temminck's Stint
Temminck's Stint

Temminck's Stint

Roller
Roller

Rufous Tailed Rock Thrush
Rock Thrush

Northern Wheatear
Northern Wheatear

Northern Cormorant
Northern Cormorant

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