Severn Hams (2 March 2011, contributed by Mike Smart and Les Brown)
At Coombe Hill this morning, a very slight rise in water levels. Most of the wintering duck have gone, only about 100 Wigeon, 120 Teal, 1 Pintail, 10 Tufted left. About five pairs of Canada and one of Greylag Geese, looking ready to nest. A few waders round the scrapes, no doubt mainly migrants on their way north: 5 Curlew, 3 Dunlin, 1 Redshank, 28 Lapwings. 1 hunting female Sparrowhawk. Otherwise very quiet. (MS/LB)
At Upper Dumball this evening, on the same rape field: the swans had clearly not left, presumably because of the north-easterly winds since Saturday: 4 Whoopers (three adults and a cygnet), still 40 Bewick’s (29 adults and 11 cygnets), 2 Mutes (one adult and one cygnet). The Whoopers took off and flew the 200 yards or so to the river at 5.50pm, landing on the water by the pub at Epney, and were then carried downstream; lost sight of tehm in the darkness, don’t know if they landed on a sandbank. The Bewick’s waited until 6.14pm, then flew off in the direction of Slimbridge. The Mutes took off at the same time as the Bewick’s, but also flew to the Severn, and were gradually carried downstream.