Friday, 16 December 2011

Bunny Meadows and Retrap Redshank

In my last post I mentioned the re-trap Common Redshank that was captured at Farlington Marshes during our ringing session, well here are the details. Bearing in mind that the National longevity record for this species in the UK is over 20 years, this bird was captured in August 2005 in another part of Langstone Harbour, so nothing spectacular there. But it was captured with 267 other Redshank and 26 Dunlin, and was an adult at the time, so unfortunately we will never know its true age!

With the rising tide combining with the setting sun, it seemed like an ideal time to search for waders back at Bunny Meadows. Black-headed Gulls were abundant and the wooden rails  were ideal resting locations, this adult winter individual proved to be particularly confiding.

Adult Winter Black-headed Gull

Ducks and waders were present in good numbers, with Eurasian Wigeon, Common Teal, Eurasian Curlew, Common Greenshank, Common Redshank, Grey Plover and a single Red Knot present. But the most numerous species was Dunlin, with at least 500 birds present.
Dunlin Feeding on the Rising Tide

Birds were feeding on the rising tide, occasionally wheeling around before settling back on the mud, chattering and busily feeding before the last areas of mud disappeared.

Dunlin in Flight

As the sun continued to set and the tide continued to rise, the Dunlin became more tightly packed as they searched for the highest points and the most suitable roosting locations....

Dunlin Milling Around on the Rising Tide

............before finally settling down to roost.

Waders Settling Down to Roost in the Setting Sun

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