Monday, 21 March 2016

Swallows and Black Kites

After the sunshine of Saturday it was a cool and damp start to Sunday so I took the car rather than the bike to see if anything had turned up at The Bandiat. There was only a male shoveler on the rapidly shrinking lake but over fifty swallows were chasing insects and sometimes settling in the trees. Chiffchaffs were plentiful.

I met a french birdwatcher there (an extremely rare event in Charente) who told me that a sociable plover had been seen at Fougère. This even rarer event is one that I need to investigate tomorrow. I had in fact been there earlier and seen nothing more than lapwings, shovelers, a great white egret and half a dozen golden plovers..... but you never know.

A drive over the Lairiere plains turned up my first black kite of the year and his presence upset a female hen harrier which tried to see him off. It was surprising to see how small she looked in comparison. I saw a second black kite in the afternoon near the lakes of high Charente.

On the sunny Saturday which I mentioned there were a couple of snipe at Fougère and two great white egrets, while at my feeders the brambling count had risen to five.

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