Welcome to the Eden Estuary news for August.
It’s been a real mixed bag of weather in July and yet despite the big clouds, little actual rain. Warm and sunny spells is good but makes the bird watching difficult due to haze. The breeding season is coming to an end and the reserve has seen many species with young out and about during July. The waders are returning and the Autumn passage appears to have started well. This is a great time for visiting to catch the splendid mix.
All over the reserve through July young of several species noted. Shelduck, Mallard, Stonechat, Willow warbler and many more.
Out on 20th 2 Stonechat, 2 Reed bunting and 15 Ringed plover. St Andrews bay quieter for Gannets than usual, but 65 there on 22nd.
WeBS (Estuary Count) 29th:
wader and wildfowl numbers are picking up. Out on the 29th were 626 Oystercatcher, 305 Redshank, a good 869 Curlew, 7 Ringed plover, 4 Greenshank, 2 Little egret and 139 Lapwing. 5 Sandwich tern and 16 Common tern. A nice spot of 3 Osprey too. Wildfowl were 122 Eider, 64 RB Merganser, 21 Goosander and only 35 Shelduck, however reasonable numbers of juveniles have been recorded around the last week of July. Godwits have been around but in very low numbers.
Recorded only once on 11th on their usual haunt at the far post in Balgove Bay. One there also on 1st August.
Some great records coming in for July. Up to 3 Little egret reported from 21st. Good to see them back. 35 Mute swan on 29th. Heron numbers have been swelled by the colony with 12 on 22nd. A single Shoveller on 16th and 22nd. 7 Tufted duck on 3rd. Osprey records have been steady all month with 4 on 11th and 25th. Lapwing numbers rising from 21st. 89 Dunlin on 27th. 6 Black tailed godwit on 3rd along with a lone Bar tailed godwit. 350 Redshank on 30th. A nice spot of a single Little Ringed plover on 13th. Common sandpiper recorded through the month with 6 on 4th. The Kingfisher is back with two sightings on 6th and 29th. Chiffchaff and Willow warbler on 14th.
The reserve is not all about birds and the grasslands are looking great just now with vetch, yellow rattle and a nice record of some Purple toadflax and Sand cats tail grass. Common blue, Small pearl bordered fritlliery and Orange tip amongst the butterflies. A mix of Grey and Harbour seals are out hauling in Balgove Bay just now. All good wildlife and such a delight on a sunny day.
Bird of the Month
Little Ringed Plover
Nice to feature a wader this month and one which is a scarce record on the Eden. Very similar to Ringed plover and telling the difference isn’t easy. In flight look for the all brown wing minus the white bar of the Ringed plover, if on the ground and close enough the pale (not yellow) legs are another feature. If you scope it or are close enough you may pick out the yellow eye ring, a very defining feature.
One spotted from the Eden centre on 13th.
· Opening Hours 9am-5pm
· Centre Closure:
Please note the centre will be closed 9th and 10th August
for its annual floor paint.
· Visitor Handbook 2016:
· Lochore Open Day Aug 27th:
Come along and see what this great facility has to offer. The Eden Ranger will be there promoting all things coastal and wild.
· Sea Eagle festival Tayport 28th Aug:
Pop along to Tayport Common between 1pm and 4pm to find out more about the local Sea eagles. RSPB and the ranger will be on hand. Hopefully might even spot one or two birds!
· Sea Eagle View Points:
I am often asked where is the best place to view these birds. Outwith the Eden, the Tentsmuir Point and coast is best, Tayport too. In the Eden, Outhead is best for the closest view, Evans hide at Balgove bay is next and for a scope view the Eden centre. Good luck!
· Coble Pools:
The water feed to the pools has been interrupted by works along the road, so the pools are very dry just now.
Thanks to all visitors who donate, the funds go to feed our ravenous wee birds and for small projects around the reserve. Thanks!