Sunday, 19 September 2021

Angle Bay this afternoon/early evening

We had hoped to visit Castlemartin Range today, but the area is closed 7 days a week until October. Instead, we went back to Angle Bay where we bumped into others including George Mee and Fiona Day, David Ord, Mike Davey and Rob Lewis who were also looking for the pectoral sandpiper.

There were fewer waders on the shore near the Fort Popton road - quite a few walkers/dog-walkers about! A scan of waders at the Sawdern Point roosts revealed more than 100 curlews and oystercatchers. From a closer look further up the road we could see that at least two of the curlews had colour-rings above the tarsus joint. Unfortunately, we could not make out particular combinations very well. Annie managed to get a rather distant photo of one of the birds (possibly black & white stripes right leg; red? left leg). Was it ringed locally by Paddy and Mike et al.?

The pectoral sandpiper was on the rocky shore there too, but the sighting was all too brief before it probably flew off with most of the curlews etc. We searched other likely spots along the shore and over at the harbour, but we failed to relocate it. Hopefully there is a reasonable chance of it sticking around though, so it could be worthwhile someone checking the shore again.

Other birds along the shore included a few bar-tailed godwits, several ringed plovers, a few turnstones,  whimbrel and a roosting flock of 10 little egrets. We saw none there yesterday, but the light was poor then. 

Over at the spit zone in the harbour, there was a small mixed flock of dunlin, ringed plovers and turnstones. There were also about a dozen alba wagtails, including at least a few white wags. On route we noted 3 kestrels between the bay and the Angle road.