"Lets not stop along the way" my mum tells me. Fat chance, as birds stop us every step of the way. This includes; marsh harrier, linnets, meadow pipit, golden plover, lapwings, teal, shoveler, tufted duck, hundreds of brent geese, black-tailed godwits, redshanks, wigeon, little grebes, little egrets and curlews.
A battery of scopes lined up along the dunes as we reached the beach. All scanning the sea for ducks. No sign of the long-tailed duck, but there were red-breasted mergansers everywhere. I didn't bring my scope with me today, but a kind chap allowed me a peek at my first ever merganser. I was looking at a large group of males and females bobbing on the waves. They look similar to goosanders (they are related I suppose) with red thin bills and punkier crests. The males look more striking than females with a black-green head and a series of spots on his back. Goosanders and mergansers are saw-billed ducks, which means that their bills have 'teeth' that helps catch and hold onto slippery fishy prey.
|Dunlin, Sanderling and Grey Plover|
|Gull eating a starfish|