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Tuesday, 12 June 2012

Canons Farm Grip-off Wetlands

WATER!!! And WATERBIRDS!!!

This year waterbirds have totally and utterly screwed me over at Canons Farm. First hit was a Whimbrel which Steve Gale had in April, this was shortly followed by an absolute killer record of Roy Weller's of two Black Terns flying through. I was frustrated about the first but a few people will be able to tell you how utterly gutted I was about the terns. A bit of relief and I actually saw a few good patch birds. Today I thought I had little to worry about, going to college, as surely nothing would turn up in June. Several pools have been resurrected, actually becoming more impressive than they were a few weeks ago, but time of year surely meant they couldn't do much damage. Then a call came through from Roy this afternoon 'I've got a wader', turning into 'It's a bloody Green Sand, I've just flushed it'. Buggeration. I rushed over there as soon as I could, hoping it had come down again to one of the many small pools but exhaustive searching yielded nothing.

Waders at Canons Farm are absolute golddust. Woodcock and Lapwing are the only ones that you can expect to see any numbers of, and the latter is sporadic and always notable, with months between sightings sometimes. A proper wadery wader, and on the deck too, is an opportunity not to be missed. Sorely disappointed, I am, but there was nothing I could do about it. These things happen. I'd rather Roy recorded it and it went down on paper than it went completely undetected. Quite an extraordinary record really, and a reminder that these pools really can deliver the odd treat - who knows, maybe Garganey or Wood Sandpiper (or better) could happen if the floods occur at the right time of year and under the right conditions. Very well done to Roy - he played it right, coming to see if anything was on the pools, and it payed off!

I did see a flock of ten Mallards on one of the pools, though. My highest on the deck count. Also a Grey Heron flew up from next to Piddly Pond. A Hobby flew low over the farm.