Escape to the Planet of the Ducks

The mist and cloud weren’t quite as productive as I’d hoped migrant-wise this morning as I combined my daily exercise with a site visit at Ainsdale.
Plenty singing away – 30+ Whitethroats, the infestation of Willow Warblers, 4-5 Grasshopper Warblers, only 3 Sedge Warblers on my circuit and of course Skylarks, Dunnocks and Wrens, all of which are having a ball as the site remains quieter in terms of humans and dogs than usual.
Best songster of the morning though was a Water Rail which has been on territory for a few weeks now and snored, squealed, coughed and barked like there was no tomorrow from deep cover at first light.
Brilliantly daft.
Just four nice bright Wheatears and pulses of Sand Martins and Swallows north.

The quiet continues to see some species benefitting and pushing into new territories – Lapwings, Greylags and squadrons of Shelducks, some clearly nesting.

Some slacks are still deeply flooded as mentioned on previous posts and Teal, Gadwall, Tufties, Mallards and others are all paired off and looking shifty in this bizarre new “Planet of the Ducks”, and that’s before I get to Sands Lake.
A Greenshank headed north calling away and a few squadrons of Dunlin did likewise.
Just one lone Redpoll though – I can count up the number of these and Siskins I’ve had this spring without taking my shoes and socks off.
Wall Brown butterflies and Ruby Tiger on the wing.
Thanks as ever for all your news – please keep it coming, it’s good to stay in touch in this strange world.

9 thoughts on “Escape to the Planet of the Ducks

  1. Hello John. I’m a long time reader of your blog but have never commented before. Like you said, good to keep in touch these days though. I’m an exiled Scouser living in Exeter and your writing and photos are one of the ways I have of keeping in touch with my roots. Thank you. Been in the South West for 30 years and there’s lots of good stuff to see but I have happy memories of your neck of the woods from my younger days.
    I’m a non-league level birder but getting to know my local patch better than ever. Totally suburban but with a great attractive green patch in the middle. Have had raven, green woodpecker, loads of chiff chaffs and GSW in the last couple of days. On the tiny rubbish-strewn stream we’ve even had dipper, kingfisher, water rail and little egret in the past.
    Take care and keep up the great work you do.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Great to hear from you Phil, and thanks for your kind words. Green Woodpecker and Dipper – be a while before I catch up with them again.
      No Cirls within isolation exercise distance?
      Keep well.


      • Hello again John. Thanks for taking the time to reply. There are indeed potential cirls a medium-sized bike ride away. Might give it a shot if I can get out.
        Just as an aside, the last time I was out before the lockdown was to see goshawks and woodlarks on the outskirts of Exeter. Something to sustain me through the lockdown.
        Have a good day.

        Liked by 1 person

    • Laura they are on a nature reserve already. We just have to make sure visitors respect that.
      Won’t be easy, but it can be done as long as folk put nature first.
      Surely that’s not too much to ask in a nature reserve?


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