More From Picardie

Yesterday started with a walk from the house. Amongst the common birds GreyWagtail and Nuthatch were the best birds seen. Later on we went for a walk along the coast next to the bird reserve at Hable D’Ault.  As this was much a family walk as a birdwatching trip I wasn’t sure how much we would be seeing. on arrival a scan of the sea found plenty of gulls and cormorants. looking up I noticed a couple of large birds soaring. A look with the bins revealed that they were White Storks. a great start. we set off along the heavily banked stony beach. pads of interesting things to see. Shaped stones and cuttlefish along with well weathered pieces of wood. Inland the first lake held Shelduck, Lapwing, Dunlin and Ringed Plover. Back out to sea a flock of thirty-three Med Gulls flew past and an incredible flock of twenty-seven Spoonbills flew overhead. unfortunately they didn’t drop into the reserve and we watched them as they headed off into the distance. there were lots of White Wagtails and Mipits flitting around and a. We had a brief glimpse of a flyby Wheatear and several Swallows were heading  out towards England. At least twenty Little Egrets were seen and there were four Great White Egrets in the ditches on the fields. After a picnic lunch we headed back towards the car. More Med Gulls passed including another flock of thirty plus. As we passed the first lake another scan found first a Ruff and then a superb Male Garganey which was close enough for a photo. [ To follow when I get home]. On the way home another five Storks were seen on the drive home along we’re a couple of Buzzards. Final birding of the day was a walk along the Somme Canal to see a Stork nest. One  bird was on the      nest and another was perched on top of a dead tree. The nest was an incredible structure built on top of a  dead tree. This bird has been nesting here for about four years. a couple of Cetti’s Warblers were heard calling from the reeds. That was the end of a good day of birding with the trip list reaching sixty. This morning I went for another walk from the house. Lots of  House Sparrows, Chaffinches and Blackbirds were around. approaching a small wood, Nuthatch and Great Spotted Woodpecker were heard and a Treecreeper was see. It was singing which confirmed it as a Short-toed. When I was heading back to the house a bird landed on the road ahead of me. initially I thought it was a Robin but when I looked with the bins I saw that it was a Black Redstart. The next trip out was a drive too St Valery-sur-Somme for a wander around the shops and a meal. On the way six Cattle Egrets were seen in a field by the road another good bird for the trip. that was it for birds today although I did miss a Green Woodpecker on the lawm at the house.

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