Tuesday, 14 May 2013

14th May: Otters

Having only seen a few subtle signs of their presence over the last few weeks, I was delighted to bump into a pair of Otters on Shapwick Heath NNR early this morning. They crossed the main path in front of me in the drizzly half-light and disappeared into the South Drain straight away. I plonked myself down into the grass alongside the drain and hoped that they hadn't seen me and would come my way, I wasn't disappointed! After a quick look at the far bank they slid back into the water and swum right past me, either totally oblivious, or simply not bothered by my presence. This was the closest i've ever been to Otters on the Avalon Marshes, it was over all too briefly, but was absolute magic.

One of the pair was missing an eye! It seemed healthy enough otherwise though
so its injury doesn't seem to harm its ability to catch fish

The onset of rain made birding a bit difficult; the Wood Sandpiper was still on Meare Heath, and a Common Tern was on Noah's, but the avian highlight was vast numbers of Swifts, Swallows, and Sand and House Martins feeding low over the reedbeds.

just a few Swallows

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