On Monday March 11 Bill MacLean, Ian McAllan, Charlie Andrews
and I made a second pilgrimage to Old Bar, arriving at 7.45 am just
before a 1.6m. high tide. This made all the difference. To our delight
( and relief ) there was no sign of the sand island in the estuary, a
troublesome survival of a 1.1m. high tide the previous Thurs. Unlike
on Thurs. the beach was alive with small plovers. Bill located the
KP 30m south of the pink cup, and after a couple of repositionings
the bird gave us splendid close views. We could see why there was
a debate as to whether there were 1or 2 birds. The head is not
symmetrical. Presumably because of moult, the left side is spottier
than the right, with a large white spot over the eye being
particularly conspicuous. This results in a distinctly different
appearance, with the clear supercilium of the right side almost
disappearing on the left, so to speak.
There were many more juvenile Double-banded Plovers than
last week, but no sign of the Sanderlings and Mongolian Dotterels,
which may well have been elsewhere around the estuary, of course.
The Ospreys put on a spectacular display flight overhead,
calling the while; there was a third bird in the distance.
Ian took the battered corpse of a Little Shearwater ( Tony's?)
back for the Museum.
Bill was energetic enough to drive to Marlo at 4 this morning for
the Ringed Plover.
Good on him! I hope I'm half as lively when I get to his age!
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