Saturday, 26 October 2013

Return to Somerset

I'm now back in Somerset after my time counting migrant birds in Israel. Needless to say, I had a wonderful time during the raptor count, but the icing on the cake was provided with a whistle-stop tour of the Dead Sea and Judean Desert (which you can read about here).

It was a pleasure to get back to the Avalon Marshes after my time away, I always appreciate how green and lush our countryside is after going abroad. October is generally regarded as a quite time here, birding in inland Somerset is really all about breeding and wintering birds, and being away from coast, we don't see so much migration in the Spring and Autumn periods. There is still plenty of birds about though as a lot of species stay resident all through the year thanks to our mild climate.

It's been very wet and windy this last week which hasn't made birding easy. The best, but also the most frustrating (non) sighting was a Yellow-browed Warbler I heard calling on Wednesday. It was deep in a small wood on the other side of the South Drain from my position on Shapwick Heath NNR so I never stood chance of seeing it. Nice to know there was one there though. Other unusual visitors around at the moment are 2 Glossy Ibis, a sporadic visitor from Southern Europe who are currently hanging out at Ham Wall RSPB, most frequently from the 2nd viewing platform.

Noahs Lake rainbow

1 of the 2 Glossy Ibis at Ham Wall

Great White Egret


Whooper Swan