where approximately 270 BEWICK Swans were still overwintering. Also seen were 76 EUROPEAN WHITE FRONTED
Geese which were grazing out on the marsh near the River Severn estuary. I was also hoping to see the TUNDRA BEAN GOOSE, which had been seen previously with the White Fronts, but unfortunately, it decided not to turn up on the day.
The WHOOPER Swans were in a brassica field with Mute Swans at Beenham, Berkshire and on the 14th with the sun shining, I went there in the hope of seeing them. They were still there and very elegant the pair of them looked. I missed an 'in flight' photo opportunity as they left a pasture to fly to the brassica field nearby, but I couldn't quite get the camera out of
the bag, which will teach me to be prepared next time.
On the 18th, my first WHEATEAR, a female, was seen at Pennington. In the same field were fifty plus GOLDEN PLOVER, some birds already in full summer plumage and very smart they looked.
A quick trip to Farlington on the 25th produced, SPOONBILL, RED BREASTED GOOSE and MARSH HARRIER. Conditions there were uncomfortable, as a strong cold E/NE wind was blowing in from the sea, making viewing through a telescope very difficult.
An immature male MARSH HARRIER turned up at the New Workings, Moor Green Lakes on the 27th. I managed a couple of photos of it flying, but the distance to the bird was too much for a clear shot, but for identification purposes they were helpful.
The water levels in the lakes here are still very high, as they are at many locations. When at Pennington earlier in the month,
I noticed that the gravel island in the Fishtail Lagoon had almost disappeared under water, whilst the gravel/sand areas where the LITTLE RINGED PLOVERS breed at the New Workings are completely submerged. Let's hope for a drier and somewhat warmer April.