The best thing about night shifts is finishing them, having a brief sleep and getting out in the warm spring sunshine. Reports from Brandon have been indicating that the "elusive" Spotted Crake has been more obliging, so I decided to pay a visit to hopefully get a better view. As always, east marsh hide was packed, but I eventually got a seat, and started my viewing. I was informed at how well it had been showing in the channel all morning, but it had now become more elusive. Suddenly, it flew across the front of the hide from left to right, giving about ten seconds of view! Then, about two hours later, it was spotted in with the Snipe, walking from right to left. Would it continue into the open? NO! of course not. It took flight into the reeds, but I was ready and fired off a number of camera bursts.
While waiting for the Spotted Crake to show, opportunity was taken to scan the pools which held two Ringed Plovers, four Little Ringed Plovers, two Oystercatchers, numerous Snipe, and two Redshanks (although more heard calling). A White Wagtail was spotted on willow island for a time and a Pink Footed Goose flew in with two Grey Lag Geese before re-locating to the golf course. Elsewhere, Willow Warbler numbers have increased, singing in competition with Chiffchaff and Cettis Warblers. A Water Rail was seen on central marsh with another heard nearby. It was also nice to get my first three Swallows of the year.
Pink Footed Goose
Grey Lag Goose; Robin; Wood Pigeon; Chiffchaff; Magpie; Reed Bunting; Coot; Carrion Crow; Canada Goose; Great Tit; Blue Tit; Mallard; Pheasant; Wren; Water Rail; Cettis Warbler; Willow Warbler; Green Woodpecker; Teal; Black Headed Gull; Shoveler; Lapwing; Cormorant;
Ringed Plover; Pied Wagtail; Little Ringed Plover; Snipe; White Wagtail; Spotted Crake; Tufted Duck; Mute Swan; Redshank; Oystercatcher; Sand Martin; Gadwall; Buzzard; Kestrel; Chaffinch; Swallow; Great Crested Grebe; Grey Heron; Pink Footed Goose; LBB Gull; Stock Dove; Blackbird.