2012 has been a very ordinary Birdwatching year for me so far. Even a trip to Shetland in the Spring couldn't do anything to alter the fact that all my best birding seems to get done in the Autumn.
So, good news, the Autumn starts now! Headed to Lepe before dawn very optimistically checking the reedbeds around the new hide for a Spotted Crake or two! These elusive birds turn up regularly at Farlington this time of year (in fact one is there as I type), but other similar locations don't have any previous form. Lepe looks good on paper, but the hide doesn't really overlook the suitable habitat, so birds could slip through unnoticed. Gave up on the hide after an hour. Hides are not really my thing! headed East to the other potentially good area of habitat: the lagoon.
A Common Scoter offshore, and a Spotted Redshank calling in flight, which looked to have flown out of the lagoon were the best of the birds. Meanwhile over at Calshot, a large number of Common Terns were feeding in the Solent plus a decent sized group of 30+ Ringed Plovers on the shingle. 48 Redshank at nearby Ashlett was a pretty good number for me. a handful of Black-wits, 2 Greenshank and Green Sandpiper rounded off the common Wader species that will feature over the next few months.
The garden has been "different" this summer. Recently fledged birds seem to be more in evidence than previous years including Jays and Goldcrests. Despite the poor spring, I'm hoping the summer has rescued the breeding figures for the year.
We are fortunate to have Purple Hairstreak butterflies around the garden, but this year, I only saw my first this morning!