Hail's View

Having taken the afternoon off work due to disruption at home I popped in to Hail's View and had a fantastic birdwatching trip. When I arrived Black Wood was noisy with Great Tits singing, and with the temperature at a pleasant 10 degrees there was a spring-like feel to the afternoon. A Green Sandpiper called once as I walked down to the viewpoint. Despite last night's rain the water levels are down considerably compared to previous weeks and the ducks, and particularly Lawping, are back in numbers. A nice surprise was a flock of 22 Dunlin feeding on the grass, very distantly by the river bank. A Great White Egret dropped in near to the Shepherds Hut and hung around for a little while, but I didn't notice which we way it came in or went. A vast flock of Lapwing came in from the north brooks and luckily I had my camera pointing at them as they all ascended into the air. Apparently 2000 were counted on the WEBS today. A single Golden Plover also made an appearance, its distance causing me some trouble when trying to distinguish it from Grey Plover. There was a strange haze in the air all afternoon which made me think my scope was fogged up, and it was also dulling colours. I wondered whether the Dunlin could be migrants or pushed up from the coast due to high tide, but Matt suggested they have probably been displaced by the cold temperatures in the east. One turned up at Richmond Park today apparently!

Great White Egret

Great White Egret




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