Monday, 11 June 2012

Water, water!

By way of a change its the south that appears to be getting most of the rain, and lots of it too, though the recent floods in Wales have also been a disaster. But the floods in April and May had a catastrophic impact on some of Britain's birds in particular on the Ouse Washes in East Anglia home to the largest concentration of nesting waders in lowland England, the floodwaters drowned the nests and breeding attempts of up to 600 waders including the Black-tailed Godwit.

For centuries land drainage took place across the UK, but the Ouse Washes is now the most important stronghold for wading birds including large numbers of Redshank, Lapwing, and Snipe. But the area is used as part of a flood relief system for the River Great Ouse by the Environment Agency, the river flows through three shires to the sea near Kings Lynn in Norfolk. During the summer months the RSPB Reserve Ouse Washes is grazed by cattle which create ideal conditions for ground nesting birds, but in times of extreme wet weather the sluices have to be opened to prevent flooding elsewhere in the catchment of the river, a problem its difficult to see a solution to.

Avocet David Cookson

Conversely, up here in the north of England at Leighton Moss the Avocets are having a roaring success this year and the last I heard there was 33 young with some apparently almost ready to fly....their best year yet at LM. Thanks to DC for the 'pic with a difference' of the Avocet.

And finally, try this for a Spanish trio....

Sardinian Warbler Ana Minguez Corella

The Sardinian Warbler a vagrant to the UK the first record being in 1955 on Lundy, Devon....Thanks Ana. 

Great Grey Shrike Isidro Ortiz

The Great Grey Shrike a mainly winter visitor to the UK the first record of which was claimed to have been in 1544....Thanks Isidro.

Purple Heron Antonio Puigg

And the Purple Heron another visitor to the UK and first recorded in Middlesex 1722 ....Thanks Antonio. 


Ana Mínguez Corella said...

Hi Peter! .. In Spain the contrary .. drought and crazy time .. Too bad

Pete Woodruff said...

Ahhhh....Looking in again and comments in English....un saludo Ana.