This is no Farmoor, Otmoor or Port Meadow. This is Grimsbury. It's Grim up north!

There is a running total year list in the link above.

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Tuesday, 9 April 2019

9th Apr 2019: Marsh Harrier, Little Gull, Arctic Tern & Yellow Wagtail!

John: Well...what a day it has been at the reservoir, with FOUR new birds for 2019. The gloomy conditions and easterly winds of the previous day, continued into this morning. Unlike yesterday though, it brought far more excitement!

It all began with the appearance of 2 adult Little Gulls dropping in on my pre-work stroll, one sporting a nice black hood. It was great watching them bouncing over the water in an almost tern-like manner.

While watching the Little Gulls, I realised a Tern had joined them - this turned out to be a lovely adult Arctic Tern! It is an early-ish date for one, however was part of a small sprinkling of them across inland water-bodies over the last couple of days.

Just when I thought it couldn't get any better, a succession of Lesser Black Backed Gull alarm calls, alerted my attention to a raptor flying fairly low over the cattle field - I was amazed to find it was a cream-crown Marsh Harrier, a new bird for me at Grimsbury! It battled into the breeze, harassed all the way by the local pair of LBBGs, before it disappeared over the nearby Amazon warehouse. What an amazing visit it had been!

Additional highlights included the first Yellow Wagtail of the year, picked up by Ian Rowe at lunchtime, as well as a further one in the evening. We again had a visit from a female Little Ringed Plover, while a White Wagtail was generally about, together with at least 25 Pied Wagtail. There was a decent drop of Swallows, Sand Martins & House Martins about all day, making the place a real hive of activity!

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