Eden Estuary Newsletter
Monday, July 6, 2015
Welcome to the Eden Estuary news for July.
Summer has arrived. As the longest day slips past, the thermometer finally rose and the sun appeared. The reserve has taken on its languid mid-summer hum. Bird wise its pretty quiet, the breeding is culminating with many juveniles squeaking, waddling and fliting about, learning the great lesson of life. Butterflies are now appearing, the grassland and hedges are long and the air is mild and full of scent and wee flying things. Here are June’s highlights:
Outhead: Some strong breeding going on here with Stonechat, Reed bunting, Meadow pipit, Sedge warbler, Skylark and Linnet all producing young. The dunes and grassland are full of juveniles such as 34 juvenile Linnet on 30th June. Single Wheatear on 3rd and 14 Dunlin and 78 Ringed plover on 1st.
WeBS (Estuary Count): The estuary mix of birds has settled into the mid summer lull. Very few waders. Amongst the numbers were 117 Shelduck some with young in tow. 13 Goosander, a single Osprey and a lone Little egret. Quiet.
Coble Pools: A pair of Mute swan with nest on the pools was good to see continue. Sedge warbler, Linnet, Whitethroat and Reed bunting all breeding here.
River Eden: Out on the river on 22nd were 12 Goosander, 24 Swallow, 3 Swift, 5 Reed bunting, 12 singing Sedge warbler and 4 Grey partridge. 5 Common sandpipers on 30th. A good place to spot the Little egret.
Eden Centre: Some fine records and the centre of activity this month. 2 Great crested grebe on 2nd were a good start. Little egret have been present since 2nd June. With 2 present on 26th and 30th. Mute swan have bene a big feature with up to 40 present all month. 23 Canada geese arrived on 8th and stayed all month. 27 juvenile Shelduck noted on 6th. A single Pintail on 11th. 5 Tufted duck on 23rd. Goosander are regular with 15 present on 23rd. Osprey have been very regular all month with 3 on 10th. Sea eagle spotted on 2nd and 3rd then not again until 2nd July. Waders slowly returning toward the end of the month. Very poor year for Tern records with only 3 Sandwich recorded on 18th. Around the centre were a Garden warbler, Blackcap and Willow warbler on 3rd, the latter two being heard regularly since. Good numbers of Tree sparrow, Goldfinch, Greenfinch and tits around the feeders….and unfortunately a grey squirrel, I wondered how long it would take for them to locate my stash!
Nothing too rare, however it is picking up. A lovely summer scene out there and Osprey, egret and eagle is not too poor I think. Enjoy.
Bird of the Month
This bird has held the interest and complemented the view from the centre on most days in June. Becoming a reserve regular these days, they don’t pull the crowds like they used to however they are great to watch and when the reserve quietens for summer they are a lovely feature. Their presence may also hint at larger changes, who knows. 2 spotted on 26th and 30th. Spot them whilst stocks last!
• Opening Hours 9am-5pm.
• Visitor Handbook:.£1 from the ranger or at the Eden centre.
• Facebook: Look up Fife Coast & Countryside Trust for information and latest news.
• Breeding Birds: Please keep dogs on leads around reserve. The juvenile birds are very vulnerable.
• Army Leuchars: Welcome to the Army and their families whom are now bedding in at Leuchars.
• Alec Watt Memorial Fund: Any contributions please drop in sealed envelope into the donations slot in the centre door.
• Boat Work: The rangers cleared some large waste items from the north shore (images on Facebook) Items included, TV, dinghy, wheelie bin and 25l of used engine oil…it's back.
• Summer Wildlife: Please let us know of your wildlife encounters around the reserve. I’d like to hear about wildflowers, butterflies, seals, dolphin, otter…. anything wild! Thanks.
The Open St Andrews
The championship takes place between 12th-19th July please be aware of road closures and travel disruption leading into and out of these dates. The Eden Estuary centre will be open. Access to the reserve will be restricted round St Andrews. If golf is not for you, avoid the town that week.
All information provided by Ranald Strachan, Fife Coast & Countryside Trust - 07985 707593.