August 19th   Leave a comment

I was pleased to find my last corn bunting nest that I had written off yesterday still going strong today. The chicks have fledged successfully and both birds were busy feeding them this morning. The male must have gone silent and inconspicuous – this is why I thought they had failed – because it was, unusually, working for a living and feeding the chicks. It only seems to be about one in five males that feed their chicks, and then not as regularly as the females. This is the last nest in the potato field and even if it is cut tomorrow, the chicks should be ok. I hope it isn’t. Potato fields are great cover for the chicks. But I did notice that the parents were coming out of the field to find food in the wild bird mix edges, suggesting that the insects in the potatoes are not so good, or harder to find.

Balcomie Beach was covered in waders at high tide again, with the highest numbers of ringed plover I have ever seen there. If you sit down at the top of the beach and wait, sooner or later a coastal walker will come by and put them all up. The waders fly about a bit but then come back, and more often than not, they land right in front of you. I had sanderling, dunlin, ringed plover and knot all at just a few meters away from me today. There was a juvenile wheatear on the shore as well, but it was much shyer.

The juvenile northern wheatear on Balcomie Beach this morning (John Anderson)

Posted August 19, 2021 by wildcrail in Sightings

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