Tuesday, 26 September 2017

Mission Accomplished

Date: 26/09/2017
Patch, Somerset Levels, Chew Valley Lake & Chewton Mendip
Weather: Overcast, Grey but Warm
Species Highlights
Newton St Loe: Meadow Pipit, Little Egret.
Somerset Levels: Bearded Reedlings, Hobby, Marsh Harrier, Water Rail.
Chew Valley: Great White Egret, Cattle Egret
Chewton Mendip: Great Bustard.

Since USA not been out much although did go round patch with not alot changing, Little Egret still Top Lake and a large group of Meadow Pipits at 50 or so birds in Horse Fields with 6 Barn Swallow on the 19/09 but only 1 seen on the 24/09 most gone by now I'll check again Thursday.

Tuesday promised fine sunny weather, but on getting up it was grey and misty here in Bath but headed off to Westhay anyway looking in on Chewton Mendip my second attempt at the Great Bustard female which had been there, no sign so headed on to the Levels.
My targets today were the Bearded Reedlings which show well this time of year. On arrival I saw them almost immediately in reed besides the Boardwalk. With a few other Photographers watching and snapping I walked on and sat down within a few minutes 15 Bearded started to grab the grit.

Stunning birds and totally oblivious to humans it seemed.

Who's been eating all the Pies!

Although they look great wherever they are, it's always good to get them off the floor and perched in reeds or in tree's.


Then they went to the tree's along side boardwalk. 

I think at one point at least 30/40 birds were around us.

Took too many photographs but that's the great thing about digital, just means I need a bigger hard drive!

After a couple of hours and chatting to the other nice people there I wandered off around the rest of reserve with Marsh Harrier and Hobby seen also, got to the north hide and briefly saw a Water Rail always good. Lots of Common Darters in the last throws of life, making next year's Dragonflies.

I headed off.
I pass Chewton Mendip on the way home so a quick check for Bustard again, no show 3rd time! Still a hour left before I had to go so drove the short distance to Chew Valley and Villace hide, a few Great White Egret, Gadwall, Common Sandpiper on show but no much else from hide so went back to Heron's Green where more GW Egret at least 6/7 birds on show.

Robert was there and we relocated the 2 Cattle Egrets with his fancy Scope! He told me that not 60 mins before I'd arrived at Chewton the Bustard showed to him, so I headed back in that direction for one last attempt.

Was extremely happy when from field lane by gate I found bird very distant this 560mm full crop. But my first Great Bustard.

50% crop with barn you can see from main road, no wonder I couldn't see it before.
That was my lot and headed home happy. 
Mission accomplished!

Thanks For Looking! 
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