I'd been meaning to go for a long time to visit Adel Dam. Can't imagine why. It seemed neglected and pretty lifeless. The first hide proudly announced that hopefully it would soon get an upgrade. There was little to see and it looked overgrown. The second hide was closed for repairs and the lake was covered in unpleasant looking algae. I saw a heron and a dunnock during my visit. Plus 27 squirrels of the verminous variety.
So far so bad...
Don't despair however. Golden Acre Park is well maintained and as soon as I reached the lake by the so-called Duck Hut I saw mandarins - females and juveniles. I'm guilty of being chronologically inaccurate however as I had to go through the park and past the lake before I reached Adel Dam. If I'd stayed by the lake I'd see what I came for without the longer walk! When I came back from Adel Dam the drake mandarins were everywhere. The drakes must be late risers as befits their high status as mandarins!
Here's some pics!
Juvenile drake's head visible on right.
I was late in arriving and the tide was low. The best birds had moved on. I found black-tailed godwits and a spoonbill by the creek. The Headland was quiet and the purple sandpipers had flown. I was glad to see Barry on the Headland. I decided to head for Seaton Snook and a long walk on wet sand. Barry headed for Ward Jackson Park where [as I learnt later] he saw parakeet. That would have been a tick for me! No ticks as the bonxie had gone south but still I had a good time.
Sandwich terns are still present.
Guillemots and razorbills in huge numbers on the river. Very strange.
I saw one dead guillemot along the waterline.
Some frighteningly loud explosions somewhere in the industrial area put everything in the air [except the auks]. Knot I think.
The birds soon settled down again on the sands. Knot on right hand edge.
An arctic skua appeared.
Time was pressing so I began the walk back but was cut off from my preferred route by the tide that had started to come in again. That was lucky as I now headed back the way I had come along the samphire path. To my surprise I saw these three truants...
More wanderings later, I hope!