22nd July: Alkborough Flats
Two visits to Prospect Hide in order to see the stilt sandpiper. The first time the hide was overloaded, I didn't linger and the bird could only be seen with difficulty and with a scope by managing to look north-west towards Trent Falls while standing on a bench. I gave up. One photo from the first visit [21/7].
I returned on the 22nd to an empty hide. Eventually another birder arrived and we saw the stilt sandpiper quite well. Here it is...
23rd July: Eccup Reservoir
Useless visit. You can do a walk round Eccup Reservoir but you rarely see the water for the tree growth. Saw a possible spotted flycatcher, an unidentified warbler and a young robin.
I gather now that the reservoir is best viewed from the dam wall [ I never got that far as I'd had enough of seeing so little] or with a scope from the path that heads North from the North-east corner of the reservoir. I'm in no hurry to try.
26th July: Blacktoft Sands
A much better day's birding. No year ticks but some really good birds. I'd seen a group of nine cranes on King's Causeway near Swinefleet in April but the 4 common cranes at Blacktoft were much closer. Also good shows from black-tailed godwits, greenshank, spotted redshank, snipe and other regulars.
I know they're miles away but...bearded tits!
And the stars of the show!
28th July: Denaby Ings
Report of a purple heron. I arrived to a full car park. Good sign. Birders walking back said: 'Carry on to the sluice.' So I did.
29th July: Redcar/Saltholme/Hartlepool
I started at the car park between Redcar and Marske hoping to see some common scoter. I counted 58 approx.
Also in the car park
Dorman's pool for a little stint that failed to show. Great egrets, spoonbills, a woodsand, greenshanks, ringed plovers - all sorts. I called at Saltholme hoping for a young yellow wagtail but no luck.
Moorhen pair were keeping their youngster close.
Rowan berries and a great white egret at Phil Stead's.
Final call at the Lifeboat Station. I was surprised to see a common blue by the car park.
The kittiwakes seemed to be doing well.
I do like juvenile kittiwakes.