Wednesday, 25 November 2015

Birding at Normandy Marshes, Lymington

As we walked the path to look over the main lagoon we had the usual little birds though we could only hear a Bullfinch and not see it.  There were quite a few Meadow Pipits in the adjacent field along with a Song Thrush, Pied Wagtails and a Stonechat.  Moving on we looked over Oxey Lake, the light was dismal but we could see three ducks diving in the main channel along with a Great Crested Grebe.  Even with 'scopes it was awkward but by the head shape and compactness of the duck I knew they were three female Goldeneye.

Turning our attention to the lagoon in the marshy edges Teal and Wigeon grazed and Redshank picked around as well as many Lapwings.  Black-tailed Godwits flew over our heads into the lagoon and on to the fields.  Lesley brought my attention to four waders further right, they were all Spotted Redshanks and just as I was running through the differences to Common Redshank they flew up.  In fact everything went up but we could not find the culprit though I suspect it was the local Peregrine.   Most of the birds returned but not the Spotted Redshanks so we moved a little further along.  

A Kingfisher flew out close from where we stopped and flew across the lagoon landing on a distant post.  I picked up a smart drake Goldeneye a little way out and several Pintails, there were five Avocets and our first of at least six Greenshank.  Clive pointed out some Dunlin that were quite difficult to pick out as they blended in so well with the stony patch they were on along with Turnstones.
Avocet from Two Owls photo archive © Nick Hull
Looking out into the Solent we saw several Great Crested Grebes and one splendid Black-necked Grebe.  I looked over the bank for the Peregrine that regularly sits out here and I was not disappointed with a female preening and though distant we had nice views.   Back into the lagoon we added a few more to the wildfowl list with Gadwall, Tufted duck, Shelduck and a female Red-breasted Merganser.

We were now at the end of the lagoon wall and I mentioned that Dartford Warbler is sometimes seen here and one popped up and flew across to a gorse bush giving an all to short view.  We walked the footpath from the boat yard to Normandy Lane when we heard Song Thrush singing and stood to watch it in the tree.  I turned round to see a Firecrest sat out next to me, what a delightful surprise and a great end to our walk.

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