Saturday 9 April 2016

A County Tick, a Couple of Rouzels and a Gleaming White Gull

This morning was the first real opportunity I'd had to dash off after the Great Grey Shrike at Warren Hills. It was raining when I arrived and there was no sign of the shrike. Not long after it had stopped raining it appeared. It was a county tick for me and one to savour. The area north on the main footpath is a real migrant trap best known for attracting Ring Ouzels. This Great Grey Shrike has notched the site up to another level.

Great Grey Shrike

It was great to hear Willow Warblers announcing their arrival back in Leicestershire. Also a pair of Wheatears had stopped off at Warren Hills on their way north.

I now had a choice to make, head back towards home to look for the two male Ring Ouzels that Adey Baker had found at The Outwoods, Burbage or head towards Shawell on the M1.

I decided on Shawell as it was the easiest of the two sites to get to. This was a good plan as I found a third-winter Iceland Gull at the landfill site. later on it appeared at the A5 Lagoons. Presumably it was the same one that roosted at Draycote water last night. It was good to see another Iceland gull after the experience with the  juvenile gull that broke its wing.

Third-Winter Iceland Gull, Shawell A5 Lagoons 09/04/16
Third-Winter Iceland Gull, Shawell A5 Lagoons 09/04/16

I finished early at Shawell and headed to Burbage hoping to see the Ring Ouzels at The Outwoods. My luck was in and I managed to end the day in style by seeing both Ring Ouzels. They were a little too distant to get a record shot, but they looked smart through my scope.

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