Our first ducklings of the year were sighted this week, with 14 Eider ducklings spotted in front of the Visitor Centre on the 29th and today’s count is 58. There were also 9 Mallard ducklings in the Salt Pans this morning. Common Terns have also returned to the tern raft, with numbers increasing to 38 by the 28th. With courtship displays still in full swing we should hopefully have sightings of eggs soon. There continues to be regular sightings of an osprey hunting at the Basin, with it being spotted on the 25th, 30th and today.
A Water Rail was seen at the Salt Pans on the 27th and there are still daily sightings of a Moorhen in the same area, with a pair being spotted on the 25th. A more unusual sighting was the pair of Gadwall spotted in front of the Visitor Centre yesterday, with one being spotted earlier on the 27th.
The 25th was a good day for viewing small birds, with a Sedge Warbler at the Sand Martin wall, a male Reed Bunting seen singing on the reeds in the Salt Pans, and a pair of Linnets near the feeders.
Other sightings on the reserve this week include 5 male Red-breasted Mergansers and 9 Goldeneye spotted today in the centre of the Basin, a female Marsh Harrier on the 27th, and a Stoat being chased by a male Pheasant outside the Visitor Centre window on the 25th.
Georgina Bowie, Visitor Centre Assistant