Recent sightings from 03 to 10 March 2019

The week started very promising indeed and on Monday a female Hen harrier which has been seen on several occasions since the end of November was spotted from the hide. One day later it made another appearance and this time it delighted us with flying right in front of the cafe window just before 5pm to allow some great close-up views. Some Snipe that were flying off in the presence of the Hen harrier seemed less happy to see this fabulous bird of prey. A Sparrowhawk was also seen right in front of the cafe as it was on the look-out for a treat for itself and on at least one occasion it was successful in finding one. Strong winds and rain showers made it at times rather tricky to see anything in the reedbeds or on the mudflats, but there were still some great sightings. The Bittern didn't seem to be too fazed by the weather conditions and was heard booming once again during the week. Bearded tits were also around and were heard on Monday and seen on Thursday. The Little owl stayed mainly "indoors", but sometimes came out for a quick look around. Pochards, Tufted ducks and Little grebes remained very active on the lagoons and the calls of the Water rails competed with the howling winds. The mudflats saw good numbers of Shelduck and Curlew and on Wednesday there was a flock of around 30 Black-tailed godwits. Friday brought another sighting of the Otter. Goldcliff lagoons had some real highlights in store. While Barnacle geese were still present on Saturday, there was also a growing number of Avocets coming back into the lagoons, or as Chris Packham described them"the Audrey Hepburn of the bird world". Another exciting sighting there was a Crane on Thursday which wore a colour coded ring. All in all, quite a variety of exciting sightings this week despite the unfavourable weather conditions which once again proves that Newport Wetlands are well worth a visit regardless of the weather.

Avocet, Barnacle goose, Bearded reedling, Bittern, Blackbird, Black-headed gull, Black-tailed godwit, Blue tit, Bullfinch, Canada goose, Carrion crow, Cetti's warbler, Chaffinch, Chiffchaff, Coot, Cormorant, Crane, Curlew, Dunnock, Gadwall, Goldfinch, Great black-backed gull, Great spotted woodpecker, Great tit, Green woodpecker, Greenfinch, Grey heron, Hen harrier, Herring gull, House sparrow, Jackdaw, Jay, Kestrel, Lapwing, Lesser black-backed gull, Little egret, Little grebe, Little owl, Long-tailed tit, Magpie, Mallard, Marsh harrier, Meadow pipit, Moorhen, Mute swan, Oystercatcher, Peregrine, Pheasant, Pied wagtail, Pochard, Redshank, Reed bunting, Robin, Scaup, Shelduck, Skylark, Snipe, Sparrowhawk, Starling, Tufted duck, Water rail, White-fronted goose, Wigeon, Woodpigeon and Wren.

Please note that we take our recent sightings list from the visitor sightings board that anyone can contribute to. This is great as everyone can get involved, but obviously can lead to potential errors too as they aren’t always verified!  We try to keep this list as accurate as possible but if you see something unusual feel free to comment here!

  

Photo credit: Hen harrier by Mark Hamblin (rspb-images.com)

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