Tuesday, 29 December 2015

Blue Skies On The Levels...

Date: 29th December 2015
Location: Westhay > Greylake > Ham Wall

Observation: Blue skies forecast, so headed down to the Somerset Levels. Started at Westhay, where the car-park was almost full already, the reserve was pretty quiet, the odd Cetti's Warbler singing in the tree's, with a fly-past Mute Swan against the blue!


With not much about and only taking the one picture we moved on swiftly to Greylake, hoping for a space in the car-park! Close, we must have taken the last space! Lots of people hanging around in the car-park so headed around the reserve to see some birds! On arrival all waders and ducks in the air, the pair of Marsh Harriers were causing havoc!


Managed to squeeze into the Treetop Hide, where there were plenty to look at. Thousands of Wigeon, and quite a few Snipe also. Lapwing spent most of the time in the air because of the Marsh Harriers sat on the banks.

A few of our favourites from Greylake:





Quite big groups of Starling at Greylake feeding in the fields.


Onto Ham Wall lastly, headed straight for the Dusky Warbler that had been showing and calling 1 minute before we arrived. On arrival a few birders were following it from tree and tree (such a flighty bird!) after about 20 minutes of searching, with only one view we moved on, no pictures unfortunately, too many Chiffchaff's nearby, and it didn't call whilst we were there! There's always next time.... A quick break back at the van waiting for the Starlings, hundreds of people arrived for the roost, new and old car park completely full, with cars double parking and along Ashcott Road also. 4pm came and no sign of any Starlings not 1! 
Maybe they roosted at Shapwick? Headed that way still no luck, only one large group of around 1,000 - 2,000 passed overhead with tiny groups of 20 - 30 birds in them. 


Seemed to be more Starling at Greylake in the afternoon than at the roost.
No idea where they roosted tonight and why they didn't roost on the Levels? 

Traffic getting out of car-park onto main road was a nightmare, at a standstill for over 30 minutes, amazing to think how it coped before the new car-park was opened!


Weather: Blue Sky, Warm  - 12.5 Degrees

Other Species: Buzzard, Marsh Harrier, Kestrel, Snipe, Wigeon, Shoveler, Starling, Greater-Spotted Woodpecker, Teal, Chiffchaff, Cetti's Warbler


Thanks For Reading!