1-31 August sightings and personal blog

30-31 August 2009 The end of the month saw plenty of warblers about, I saw nine species from the Holden Tower on 30th. A Little Stint, juvenile Yellow-legged Gull and other waders were hightlights as WWT. A visit courtesy of Neil Smart along with Nick Goatman to Farmoor Res in Oxfordshire was well worth it, hearing that  a juvenile Black Tern had now joined the juvenile American Black and juvenile White-winged Black was too much of a draw. The chance to compare these three together in the field which is probably a first ever in the world? was too good to miss. We went for an hour on the evening of 30th.

Cattle Egret, WWT MJM

WWT Slimbridge 31 August 2009 MJMcGill

Willow Warbler, Holden Tower MJM

WWT Slimbridge 31 August 2009 MJMcGill Willow Warbler

26-29 August 2009 Still lots of migrants at WWT Slimbridge with highlight today being three Redstarts together and Neil Smart, Mike Youdale and I finding a Cattle Egret on safari. See WWT link below for a full list of birds seen.

Cattle Egret in the Bull Ground MJM

WWT Slimbridge 29 August 2009 MJMcGill 0015

The Cattle Egret MJM

WWT Slimbridge 29 August 2009 MJMcGill 0013

Juvenile Kingfisher (darker) 29 August 2009 WWT MJM
The hedges are full of warblers perhaps over a thousand on site but also have other birds with them, like this little beauty.

WWT Slimbridge 29 August 2009 MJMcGill 008

Arctic Tern juvenile that I saw on 27 August 2009 roosting on the South Lake WWT MJM

Arctic Tern juvenile WWT Slimbridge 27 August 2009 MJMcGill 030

23-25 August 2009 Not got out today but a brief visit to Townfield Lake, Frampton yesterday gave me four Common Terns, one fo which was a juvenile. See the WWT link below for more sightings.

20-22 August 2009 Day seven of an eight day work stretch at WWT was again very birdy due to back to back events. Most sightings are on the WWT website for Slimbridge but highlights today were Cuckoo at Middle Point, 21 juvenile Knot and 2 juvenile Turnstone (my first juvs of the autumn), loads of warblers in the hedges, seeing Hobby back over the 100 Acre (and low overhead) and Clouded Yellows. A Redstart along the summer walkway was also notable. Click on the link for latest WWT sighings.


19 August 2009 A few new birds at WWT Slimbridge today, I went in a bit earlier to have a look off Middle Point, a juvenile Little-ringed Plover and adult Sanderling were among 90 Ringed Plover and 300 Dunlin. 18 Yellow-legged Gulls included a ringed bird that appears to be from Italy. More details to follow. A flock of 12 Arctic Terns flew downriver with a juvenile among them. I spent all day mowing and was joined by 4 Yellow Wagtail in the Top New Piece. A few Clouded Yellows were on the wing.

Clouded Yellow, Top New Piece, WWT Slimbridge MJM

Clouded Yellow 19 August 2009 Lumix  MJMcGill 001


17-18 August 2009 A few birds about at WWT to keep one birding but more time spent behind the wheel of a tractor. Lots of Skylarks a few Buzzards and a Wheatear logged from the cab.

Northern Wheatear (juvenile) and Slimbridge church spire MJM

August 15 2009 Lumix  MJMcGill 001

11-16 August 2009 Some good birds about at WWT, highlights for me recently have been the juvenile Marsh Harrier and seeing Wheatears and Whinchats back again.

Marsh Harrier, juvenile, WWT 100 Acre on the Landrover safari MJM

August 15 2009 Lumix  MJMcGill 011

10 August 2009 Back to work at WWT Slimbridge, a Whinchat and Wheatear, 4 Yellow-legged Gulls and two Sanderling being the highlights plus this moth on safari.

Gold Spot Plusia festucae A true wetland moth.

August 8-10 2009 Lumix  MJMcGill 008

7-9 August 2009 No birding etc but Southern Hawker and lots of butterflies in the garden inc Common Blue, Wall, Speckled Wood and Painted Ladies, high numbers of Whites and Small Tortoishell too.

6  August 2009 A walk around Wareham Forest looking for Smooth Snake was fruitless due to poor weather as was the Cream tea in Wareham, I do like currants in mine!

5 August 2009 After swimming and lunch I went to Sopley Common where I found many Black Darters, Golden-ringed Dragonfly, Southern Hawker fighting an Emperor. A Dartford Warbler was very obliging and allowed photos. I then visited Parley Common looking for reptiles but initially saw loads of birds, Hobby, 10 Stonechat, 6 Dartford Warbler, Common Whitetroats and a Redstart were all feeding here. Eventually a Sand Lizard gave itself away by it’s rustle in the bracken. I walked away twice but on my third return to the spot found it basking, images on the gallery link below.

3-4 August 2009 After doing the beach thing and lunch I went to the New Forest to look for some odonata (dragonflies). It was pretty good with warm weather, I nearly ended up in one stream being so engrossed with what I was doing I did not notice the pony and foal that had crept up behind me and tugged at my shirt. The next day was cloudy with drizzle so I thought it would be good to do a familyboat trip around Poole Harbour and visit Brownsea Island as so many activities were on for children and it was sheltered. Highlights were birding the DWT lagoon with two Spotted Redshank, three Avocet, breeding Roseate Terns and lots more. We also saw Red Squirrel.

Dartford Warbler, Sopley Common, M.J.McGill

August 1-6 2009 Lumix  MJMcGill 143

Small Red Damselfly, New Forest M.J.McGill

August 1-6 2009 Lumix  MJMcGill 064

Black Darter, Sopley Common M.J.McGill

August 1-6 2009 Lumix  MJMcGill 123

A full range of wildlife images from this trip to Dorset and Hampshire can be found by clicking on..


 2 August 2009 After birding the Upper Severn for an hour with Mike King in the morning and popping home for a bit a visit to the Forest of Dean was in order before driving to Bournemouth. I mangaged to see 14 species of dragonfly/damselfly, a Grasshopper Warbler, a juvenile Tree Pipit and c10 Crossbills. The Grasshopper Warbler jumped out of some grasses whilst I was searching for damselflies and fluttered a short distance, I then saw it scurrying through the grass mouse-like and fly up into a pine where it posed for a minute before dropping back into the grass.

Common (or Moorland or Sedge Hawker) Woorgreens, FoD, 2 August 2009. MJM. A bad name as they are not Common in Glos or many parts of the country. My first for Gloucestershire. I watched this cracking insect for a long time and eventually it attracted a mate and they flew off together.

August 1-6 2009 Lumix  MJMcGill 050

For a look at many images for this day which include some wonderful behaviour from a Golden-ringed Dragonfly click on…


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