Slimbridge on 9 March

A full moon in mid March means big high tides on the Severn, and this morning’s tide (predicted as 9.6 m at Sharpness at 0832) was very much in the tradition.  Despite the strongish westerly wind, however, the high tide on the Dumbles fell far short of coming onto the Dumbles proper, no doubt because the amount of fresh water flowing down the river was pretty low.  Continued departure of wintering water birds: only 6 Bewick’s left, with 78 White-fronted Geese.  Waders numbers also seemed to have dropped: at high tide 5 winter plumage Grey Plover, 1 Bar-tailed Godwit, only about 20 Curlews (no rings), 55 Dunlin on the edge of the Dumbles, with a Peregrine in attendance.  In front of the Zeiss hide 35 Black-tailed Godwits (feeding
deep in the water, so no colour rings visible).  An adult Black-headed Gull on the South Lake with a Cotswold Water Park ring 2N21 (white ring with black letters, reading up on the left leg).  Burst of song from a Chiffchaff in the walk to the Holden Tower, and a Cetti’s Warbler in song nearby.


Note: Information from the ringer shows that the ringed Black-headed Gull was not from the Cotswold Water Park, but was a bird originally ringed as a chick at Slimbridge in June 2009. seen three times between September and December 2010 at the Gloucester Landfill site.  It was not seen again until March 2012 at Slimbridge, where it has probably returned to breed for the first time this year.

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