Burton Mere Wetlands

For once it was a warm and sunny August Public Holiday, so Sunday mid-afternoon I decided to visit Burton Mere Wetlands. From Reception the usual mix of Canada and Greylag Geese took centre stage on the Scrape and surrounding grass. The ducks present were mostly in eclipse plumage, making identification that little bit harder. The smaller Teal and the large-billed Shoveler could still be picked out though. Waders were represented by Black-tailed Godwits and Lapwing plus a single Curlew Sandpiper, my first for the autumn. Walking out on to path towards the Meres, typical woodland birds were soon added to the list. A male Blackcap in a bramble patch gave itself away with its loud ‘teck’ call. The water lilies on Burton Mere were just coming into full bloom. On the walk towards Marsh Cove Hide, a mixed party of Blue, Great and Long-tailed Tits also held a couple of Chiffchaff. The hide was quiet today, with a few Pied Wagtails, mostly juveniles, the only birds close by. However, there were lots of dragonflies and butterflies to enjoy instead. Overhead, a Buzzard ‘mewed’ and Swifts and House Martins demonstrated their aerial skills as they fed eagerly in preparation for their long migrations to come. On the return walk, a flock of adults and juvenile Goldfinches were feeding amongst the thistles. Bright red berries on some recently planted Rowan would surely soon be eaten by the local Blackbirds. Oh no, that means autumn is just around the corner. Let's hope the summer last a little longer yet!