Saturday, 18 May 2013

Egging it up.

A pleasant morning/midday spent contributing to the Jane Bowley Lower Windrush Valley project as part of a ten team initiative (most had help) with a view to see just what's about on Jane's patch and the result to be sent forward for inclusion in the TVERC recording scheme. With the help and good company of Ian Smith I walked the perimeter of the common and clocked over fifty species including my first Hobby and Cuckoo of the year, another interesting bird was a second winter Herring Gull. Also to tickle my fancy were the thirteen Common Terns attempting to raise young on one of the gravelly islands. Most of us were finished by about noon and retired to the hide at Rushey Common to nibble on sandwich and refresh ourselves. John Melling (local BTO rep.) totaled up the species count and with two teams still to finish we had in excess of eighty species. A late record from the hide by Clackers as he, with bins in one hand and sandwich in the other, munched but still noticed a Common Sandpiper that flew in to one of the islands, this captured Clackers enjoying two of his great pleasures in life simultaneously.
I found the discarded egg close to the lake edge and believe it to be a Coots, what surprised me was the large size, it must have taken the smile off the straining birds features as it passed this somewhat monster of an egg.


  1. Hi Barry, great blog! I was interested to hear about the common terns at Rushy Common. Was it thirteen pairs or thirteen birds? I visited Standlake Common reserve last week and was sad to find not one pair of terns on the site. I wonder why so many have favoured Rushy this year and yet none have been attracted to Standlake Common. Martyn Roper

    1. Hi Martyn,
      Thanks for kind words. I'm afraid it was a total of thirteen Common Tern but they are on a small island and seem capable of dominating it, in fact apart from a few B H Gulls they were the only "tenants"
      It is always difficult to fathom out why birds on gravel pits often seem to vary using particular ones from year to year, but I wonder if the high water levels at Standlake Common this year made the Common Terns nervous of nesting there.
      Good to hear from you, Best Wishes, Barry.