So Spring has arrived and thankfully the Easter holidays are over. Kids are back at School and the roads are once again tourist free!! Unfortunately the holidays didn’t finish soon enough and I managed to miss the Snowy Owl at St Just! However, a Green Sandpiper (168)at Porthgwarra on the 5th was a little consolation. So to more recent days, starting with the 11th where a trip to the estuary after night shifts produced Sandwich (169), Common (170) and Arctic Terns (171) on a very high tide!

Sandwich Terns at Hayle. Didn’t notice the one on fight is ringed!

On the 12th I decided with the sun out, to get the motorbike out and head for Grumbla, near Sancreed to bag the Hoopoe that had so far eluded me. After a slight detour and finally getting proper directions from Brad I found the bird showing very well in the horse paddock opposite Lower Grumbla Cottage. No photos of the Hoopoe (172) Im afraid, no room to carry the camera on the bike!

En-route home I saw my mate Mark Halliday’s van parked in the car park at Drift Reservoir, so I stopped to give him a call. Good job I did, as he had just had the 1w AMERICAN HERRING GULL (173) in front of the hide! The other downside of birding by bike is that I have to then run to the hide in full leathers and carrying a helmet! So puffing and panting I arrived at the hide just in time to bag the bird before two fishermen on a small boat ploughed through the gulls. After that the gull must have moved further down the reservoir as we could not locate it again. The 1cy Iceland Gull was also a bonus.

Superb flight shot of the AHG!! ( (c) Mark Halliday)


And finally for now, back to the Estuary yesterday (13th). I arrived for the high tide mid-morning at the Old Quay House car park where local birders Ian Webster and Linton Proctor  informed me they’d just had two Garganey but they had flown off! Typical. Anyway, not one to give in easily I first tried to relocate them at Ryan’s Field. No luck, but the Spoonbill was still there! Carnsew Pool was the next option so I parked in the Asda car park and scanned the pool. On the very far bank I thought I briefly saw two ducks fly about five feet into some rocks so after informing Ian and Linton we walked in the direction of the birds. Sure enough after a bit of scoping I located the male and female Garganey (174)tucked up sleeping in the rocks! They eventually had a bit of a fly around (allowing for one or two decent photos) before settling on the main estuary. So all in all not a bad few days. See what the second half of the month brings!

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For more AHG photos see Marks blog HERE