The Week in Focus, 27th August to 2nd September 2016

Conditions remained largely dry again with, in the main, a south-westerly airstream. Water levels at local reservoirs and lakes remained surprisingly high so limiting wader action to only a very few localities.

The Ruddy Shelduck remained at Pitsford Res and the Garganey at Daventry CP until 2nd and another frequented the scrape at Summer Leys LNR from 31st until 2nd, while the only other duck of note was a female Red-crested Pochard at Pitsford Res on 29th.

Juvenile drake Garganey, Summer Leys LNR, 1st September 2016 (Alan Coles)

Juvenile drake Garganey, Summer Leys LNR, 1st September 2016 (Alan Coles)

Juvenile drake Garganey, Summer Leys LNR, 1st September 2016 (Ricky Sinfield)

Juvenile drake Garganey, Summer Leys LNR, 1st September 2016 (Ricky Sinfield)

The juvenile Shag also remained at Stanwick GP until at least 30th, vacating its island roost on the A45 Lay-by Pit during the day for fishing areas unknown and a Great White Egret appeared at Summer Leys on 1st.

Marsh Harriers continued to be reported with one flying north-west at Hellidon on 28th, another at Harrington AF on 29th and 30th and a third at Stanwick GP on the last of these dates. Just one Osprey was seen – at Hollowell Res on 29th and the only Peregrines were up to two at Hellidon on 28th and 30th, while soon to be departing Hobbies were still at five localities during the week.

Adult Hobby, Summer Leys LNR, 1st September 2016 (Ricky Sinfield)

Adult Hobby, Summer Leys LNR, 1st September 2016 (Ricky Sinfield)

Numbers of Little Ringed Plovers were down on last week with two at Clifford Hill GP on 27th and one at Daventry CP from 27th to 29th and Ringed Plovers mustered up to four at Clifford Hill GP between 27th and 29th and one at Stanwick GP on 28th. A Black-tailed Godwit visited Hollowell Res on 29th and nine dropped in briefly at Summer Leys on 31st, while the juvenile Turnstone at Stanwick GP, from 17th, finally departed at some time on 29th, having completed a record thirteen-day stay.

Juvenile Turnstone, Stanwick GP, 29th August 2016 (Mike Alibone)

Juvenile Turnstone, Stanwick GP, 29th August 2016 (Mike Alibone)

Stanwick also hosted the week’s only Ruff – a juvenile on 28th-29th. More unusual for August was a juvenile Sanderling at Clifford Hill GP on 29th, the latter locality

Juvenile Ruff, Stanwick GP, 29th August 2016 (Mike Alibone)

Juvenile Ruff, Stanwick GP, 29th August 2016 (Mike Alibone)

additionally producing three Dunlins on the same date, three were also at Hollowell Res from 31st to 2nd and one at Stanwick GP on 28th-29th.

Dunlin, Hollowell Res, 31st August 2016 (Martin Swannell)

Dunlin, Hollowell Res, 31st August 2016 (Martin Swannell)

Hollowell also delivered the autumn’s second Little Stint, a juvenile, on 1st. Common Sandpipers continued to be seen in good numbers throughout the period, being recorded from eight localities with no more than four at any one locality, while Green Sandpipers were recorded at four with a maximum of seven at Daventry CP on 27th.

Juvenile Little Stint with Dunlin, Hollowell Res, 1st September 2016 (Cathy Ryden)

Juvenile Little Stint with Dunlin, Hollowell Res, 1st September 2016 (Cathy Ryden)

Juvenile Little Stint with Dunlin, Hollowell Res, 1st September 2016 (Cathy Ryden)

Juvenile Little Stint with Dunlin, Hollowell Res, 1st September 2016 (Cathy Ryden)

Greenshank numbers remained low with singles at both Thrapston GP and Stanwick GP on 29th, followed by one at Summer Leys on 31st, while single Redshanks appeared at Pitsford Res on 27th and Clifford Hill GP on 29th. Just four Common Snipe were at Summer Leys on 28th, one at Hollowell Res on 31st and three at Earls Barton GP on 2nd.

A juvenile Little Gull visited Summer Leys on 31st and first-winter Mediterranean Gulls this week included singles at Pitsford Res on 27th and Stanwick GP on 29th, while two visited Summer Leys on 30th. Again, the adult gull showing characteristics of Azorean Yellow-legged Gull briefly visited Stanwick GP – this time early in the

Putative 'Azorean' Gull, Stanwick GP, 2nd September 2016 (Steve Fisher)

Putative adult ‘Azorean’ Gull, Stanwick GP, 2nd September 2016 (Steve Fisher)

afternoon – on 2nd, while Yellow-legged Gulls included single adults at Pitsford Res on 27th-29th and Stanwick GP on 28th, a first-winter at Daventry CP on 29th, four at Summer Leys the following day and one at Hollowell Res on 2nd.

Adult Yellow-legged Gull, Stanwick GP, 28th August 2016 (Mike Alibone)

Adult Yellow-legged Gull, Stanwick GP, 28th August 2016 (Mike Alibone)

All of this week’s Caspian Gulls were restricted to Stanwick GP, where there was a second-summer on 27th, an adult and a first-summer on 30th, two adults and two second-summers on 1st and a first-summer on 2nd.

Again, Turtle Doves were found only at Harrington AF, where there were two on 29th, a Pied Flycatcher turned up in a garden at Denton Wood on 31st and Common Redstarts were still very much in evidence with records from Blueberry Farm, Brampton Valley, Clifford Hill GP, Daventry CP, Eydon, Fawsley Park, Harrington AF, Hellidon and Walgrave, with a maximum of at least four at the latter site on 29th. Whinchats were more widespread than in the previous review period, with records from Blueberry Farm. Brampton Valley, Finedon, Harrington AF, Hollowell Res, Sywell CP and Walgrave

Whinchat, Sywell CP, 2nd September 2016 (Alan Francis)

Whinchat, Sywell CP, 2nd September 2016 (Alan Francis)

and there were still three Stonechats lingering at Blueberry Farm. More Northern Wheatears appeared this week with singles at Denton Wood and in the Brampton Valley on 29th, two at Hellidon on 30th and singles at Summer Leys and near Finedon on 1st. A Tree Pipit flew over Harrington AF on 28th.

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One Response to The Week in Focus, 27th August to 2nd September 2016

  1. ekgraham@hotmail.co.uk says:

    excellent hobby pic. if only they were so visible on my reserve, there always next year

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