The first, on 15th, saw my mother-in-law almost pushing me out of the front door so I could go and do some birding; I think really she just wanted some one-on-one time with her daughter and new granddaughter - but I wasn't complaining! I headed first to Girton Pits to do my WeBS count. The highlight was a 1st W female Scaup on the Sailing Lake, not the most obvious one I've ever seen and requiring a closer approach to confirm it. In addition, there were no fewer than 3 Cetti's Warblers singing in various places, 2 squealing Water Rails, and 2 Yellow-legged Gulls (and adult and a 1st W).
It was then on to the patch, where the western side of Wharf Pit was being remodelled. Water levels here were extremely low, and the pit held 8 Redshank and a Dunlin - there were another 5 Redshank and 3 Dunlin on Mons Pool. Further evidence that it has been a good year locally for Cetti's Warblers came in the form of three more in song, and there were 3 Water Rails suggesting something of an influx. A Barn Owl hunting over Besthorpe Meadow wrapped things up.
Today, and I was allowed another few hours out. I wanted to check out Cotham Landfill, and spent just over two hours there. Around 700 Herring Gulls were present, along with c.75 GBBGs and 7 LBBGs, and best a 2nd winter Caspian Gull. There were also 5 darvic ringed Herring Gulls, and 1 GBBG. The Herrings were all ringed yellow on their left leg with the code Y:xxx, so ringed at a landfill near York. The GBBG was black on right, JW131; the 1st winter GBBG I had here earlier in the winter was ringed black JX157, and originated from Vardo in northern Norway - today's is no doubt from the same scheme.
|2nd W Casp|
|2nd W Casp|
|Cotham Landfill - not much room left...|