As we entered the new week, prospects were not looking good and things appeared to be going rapidly downhill. Spring, in fact, appeared to be all but over and local birding seemed resigned to simply bumping along the bottom. This, however, was not quite the case although, as it turned out, the week’s rarest birds were seen by the fewest people.
With wildfowl on the wane, sitting ducks were restricted to single drake Garganeys on Gull Island, at Summer Leys LNR, on 13th and at Fawsley Park Lakes on the same date. Pure and simple.
Heading up the cast of waders, though, was the first of this week’s two rares – a routinely hoped-for, mid-May Temminck’s Stint, which turned up at a largely unexpected location. While all eyes were on the Nene Valley, DIRFT 3 quickly ushered one onto its A5 Pools, for one evening only, on the 18th. The few who made the trip there, hoping for a dawn viewing the following morning, unfortunately went away empty-handed. Ironically, the last Temminck’s to be recorded in Northamptonshire was found at exactly the same location, in May 2021, when it also scooped the accolade for being the first one in the county for four years.
Other staging waders were a notable flock of thirty-two Black-tailed Godwits at Thrapston GP’s Titchmarsh LNR on 16th, an impressive five Wood Sandpipers at Lilbourne Meadows NR on 13th and three Greenshanks at Summer Leys on 19th.
Which brings us neatly on to the second rare of the week. While many enjoyed the one at Summer Leys in April, a White Stork is always an impressive bag wherever it turns up – this week’s bird being a fly-over for one lucky birder at Wicksteed Park, Kettering on 17th.
This week’s raptors were down to single Ospreys over Stanford Res on 15th and Hollowell Res on 18th, while a Short-eared Owl was an unseasonal find at Stanwick GP on the 13th.
Once again, there were no passerines, for the second week running …