Waders are still very much the focus of many visitors' attentions at the moment and the Allen Pool continues to deliver. Recent sightings have included spotted redshanks, green sandpiper, wood sandpiper, curlew sandpipers, ruff, little stint and greenshanks amongst the expected commoner species. Following some very high tides and some attendant westerly winds the Morecambe Pool has filled up, enticing a regular great white egret and several little egrets. As the water levels drop here, yet more waders should welcome the supply of fresh food and provide birders with great viewing and photography opportunities. (Photo of curlew sandpiper by Richard Cousens)
As well as the shorebird spectacle, the coastal hides have been great for raptor watching with osprey, marsh harrier, peregrine and merlin making frequent appearances. Kingfishers may also be seen here and a surprisingly prolonged visit by an otter was made on the morning of Thursday 5. (Photo of osprey by Richard Cousens)
Elsewhere on the reserve, spotted redshank and greenshank have been joining the mass of common redshanks on the stone islands providing quite a challenge for keen-eyed birdwatchers sitting in Causeway Hide. Bitterns too have been spotted from this hide as well as from the Lower Hide. Previous research has shown that young bitterns often disperse from their breeding grounds at this time of year so we may well see a downturn in such regular sightings in the near future. Of course, numbers will go up again as birds from further afield arrive to spend the winter with us.
We have plenty of events going on in the next few weeks, so why not book onto one of our guided walks?
Birding for Beginners Sunday 22 September
Dusk Discoveries Thursday 26 September
What's That Wader? Saturday 28 September