Checking Out the Floods

With a medical appointment on the western side of Swindon this morning and a flock of Golden Plover reported from the Cricklade area yesterday it made sense to combine the two things and spend a bit of time at the Water Park. Starting at North Meadow just outside Cricklade I soon found the Lapwing / Golden Plover flock. Well positioned to count I had done half of them when many of them decided to take to the air. I managed a reasonable picture of the aerial flock and counting from this and adding the ones left on the ground got a total of three hundred and fifty-nine. No chnce of counting the Lapwings but I guestimated at least three hundred. Also here were a good number of gulls. The majority being Black-headed but the three other common species were all represented. From here I moved onto Eysey hoping to catch up with  Oystercatcher for my Wiltshire list. It was pretty quiet here with a couple of Shelduck the best birds seen. Roundhouse farm had lots of ducks and a couple of Little Egrets. I headed back to Twitchers where I had my luch whilst checking out the birds. Duck numbers although still quite high appear to be down on my last visit with a noticeable decrease in Wigeon and Pintail. Best here were a couple of Goldeneye, a Shelduck and a Goldcrest. It was then a choice of a look at Kent End or possibly the Smew at 30. I plumped for the Smew and dipped out, no sign at all. Checking the sightings website this evening a stop at Kent End would probably have got me my Oystercatchers as a pair were reported today. Maybe the same birds checking out all potential nesting sites.


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