I can't seem to use my holiday allowance up each year, so this Spring I'm making a concerted effort to make the most of the nine days I've rolled over. Today, I sacked off work and headed to the North of the patch to see if I could find common sandpiper.
On the way I stopped off at the stell outside Great Langton and was amazed to find whooper swan...
and Egyptian goose.
Egyptian goose is a patch first for me and I was surprised that they counted in the patchwork challenge. In Shrewsbury (where I hail from), these geese were an ornamental bird in the town's largest park.
Along the river, I counted 3 common sandpiper and was fortunate to watch them display to each other. One bird (presumably the female) would run quickly with her tail feathers fanned, while two birds (presumably male) would fight, wings held high, for her attention.
While I sat patiently hoping for the sandpiper to get close (they didn't) a handsome male blackcap came and sang from the scrub next to me....
I couldn't resist checking the stell again on the way home and was glad I did. The geese had moved on but as I watched the whooper swan through the binoculars, 2 little ringed plover dropped in, adding a fourth new bird to an already fantastic day on the patch.