Monday, 20 May 2013

Early May 2013

May is traditionally an excellent month for birding, and one I particularly look forward to. Its been a hectic month so far, and here is a brief round up.

Its been a better year for Grasshopper Warblers this year.

There was a nice surprise at Westport on the 7th May with this Whooper Swan that dropped in for a short time.

May is always a good month for wader passage in Staffs, and this year its been quite productive so far. On the 11th May, a large passage of Dunlin occured through the county during a very showery afternoon. I managed to find a Sanderling in one flock.

On the 12th May during the duck count at Westport, Karl found a stonking summer plumaged Black-necked Grebe that stayed all day. We knew we were due one soon as we only usually go 2-3 years in between sightings. The last one was in 2011, coincidently also on the 12th May.

The Westport Black-necked Grebe stayed just for the day - like every other Westport record! Pics by Dave Kelsall

A Wood Sandpiper showed well at Doxey from the tin Hide on 13th May.

Another after work dash was made on 15th May. There had been a large passage of waders through the Midlands, and Belvide had had a particularly good day. Star attraction was a summer plumaged Purple Sandpiper, but we also saw four Sanderling, a Black Tern and two Garganey. 

The Purple Sandpiper at Belvide

And to finish a fine week in Staffordshire, a Temminck's Stint was at Branston GP's on the 17th May, meaning another after work trip.