**Disclaimer** I didn't see the Rn phalarope at Rutland yesterday and I do not wish to mention it any further than saying I looked at Lagoon 4, thought it looked dead and chose not to carry on round to Plover hide. Woe is me, would have been a life tick.
Anyway yesterday (4th sept) I found myself at Eyebrook at 6am again but different to last time I wasn't hunting for Cattle Egret, I was merely stopping off there en-route to Rutland for a day birding there. This turned out to be a shorter than usual stopover with very little present to divert my attention. Not one single wader was seen whilst I was there...actually tell a lie there was a single Lapwing on the far bank. But when you consider that there is usually a few hundred Lapwing at Eyebrook things become concerning.....all I can think of is perhaps a fox was worrying the roosting waders in the night. The lack of waders didn't put off the game of Partridge herding though, yesterday was particularly productive....lookie:
After this I made my way over to Egleton, stopping briefly at Manton Bridge where 3 Ospreys were immediately spotted, 1 with a large fish which was possibly a carp/bream and large amounts of waders infront of the Lyndon hides but too far away to identify properly. I resolved to visit the hides at Lyndon later for a better look and made my way to Egleton reserve to fulfil my intention of visiting the new hides that had been open a while and to visit the now re-open Heron and Wigeon hides.
I of course stopped in the hides on the way to the new lagoons and notable sightings included 5 Ruff and a Black-tailed Godwit on Lagoon 1, a Treecreeper in with the tit/warbler flock outside Mallard hide and 3 Green Sandpipers on the new wet meadow (Snipe Hide).
After a quick look in Harrier hide where nothing new was seen except Stock Dove for the day list and a Fox that scared the shit out of everything I moved onto the new path that leads towards the new hides.
|Poor today but in future this nearby island should provide superb views of nesting Terns and Plovers.|
|view of Lagoon 8|
|Lagoon 8 from Kingfisher hide|
With it starting to rain as I walked towards back towards the rest of the reserve I made the decision to attempt to escape the worst of it in the woodland surrounding lax hill - this ploy didnt really work and left me sheltering in Robin hide for the best part of an hour. The feeding station here isn't maintained during the summer months but that didnt put off the birds with another large tit/warbler flock operating in this area that included my 3rd (and best ever haul) Treecreeper of the day, at least two Nuthatch, a juvenile Greater spotted Woodpecker, a few Goldcrest, brief views of 2 Jay and what I think was a Lesser Whitethroat that gave short glimpses only.
After the rain eased I moved back towards the visitors center visting Goldeneye, Gadwall and Fieldfare hides on the way where large amounts of ducks were in evidence, the best of which being a handful of moulting Pintail - my first of the autumn. A presumed adult female Peregrine flew over at this point too.
|Gulls and 2x Pintail|
As previously mentioned Lagoon 4 didn't look promising from Dunlin hide so I quickly moved onto Shoveler hide on Lagoon 3 which was also quiet bar a couple of Green Sands so I moved along towards Smew and Lapwing hides which thankfully delivered and produced another Kingfisher and several more waders which behaved nicely and offered decent photographic opportunities that even I couldn't bodge.
|Ruffs from Lapwing hide|
|Green Sandpiper from Smew Hide|
|L to R: Dunlin, Curlew Sand, Curlew Sand, R.Plover (foreground), Dunlin|
The Ospreys were also on view of course with the three birds that i'd seen earlier in the day now much closer from the hide. So in true Hooded birder shit photograph style I attempted to mimic the inspiring shots you see of the Ospreys on the nest platform with the big country house in the background.....
|Mines clearly much better.|
After the wader fest at Lyndon I headed home via Eyebrook to see if any waders had turned up and was rewarded with two more Ruff, a Greenshank and a Black tailed Godwit that allowed itself to be photographed by yours truly
Woke up this morning with my twitching pants on - if the Phalarope was resighted I was there! I did consider a first light, hunt the fucker myself arrangement but after the fiasco of attempting that with Cattle Egret the other week I decided to pass this time. And it hasn't been seen today so I win. With the desire to twitch something burning deeply I ventured out to Frolesworth with the intention of year ticking the two Whinchat that have been sighted there over the past couple of days. And thankfully the little buggers didnt disappoint and were fairly easy to track down once I got to their favoured horse paddock and was joined by a keen observer.
|Awesome photo of a Whinchat|