Monday, 13 August 2007

Another godwit on God's roof . . .

Black-tailed Godwit. Photo by Nick Franklin
I've just had confirmation of yet another species on the prey list - a black tailed godwit. This is a rare wading bird that breeds only in very small numbers in the UK. Larger numbers breed in Iceland, Holland and Eastern Europe so maybe this bird came from there, migrating across Derbyshire either going north in spring or just recently moving back on 'autumn passage'.....
If it was the latter, then there were reports of this species at Carsington Water (a reservoir some 10 miles NW of Derby) on three July dates and further north in the county also.....the biggest group was nine but it shows that this species was about at water bodies locally in the last couple of months. Equally possible is that the godwit was taken as it over-flew the city at night during this period .....reports of the peregrines' nocturnal activity suggest they are already into night hunting!
A primary wing feather was among the debris Tony and I collected on the roof on 31st July....along with the arctic tern and whimbrel remains. And Ed Drewitt has just ID'ed another feather I had sent him as that of a knot, another species of wading bird!
BTW, the Swedish arctic tern story gets an article on Birdguide's Webzine and will be a news item in next month's Birdwatch magazine.
Nick B
Ps In the winter I found a bar tailed godwit corpse at the cathedral....so now we have both of the European godwits on the prey list. What next?
Pps The excellent photo of a black tailed godwit is by Nick Franklin to whom many thanks.

28 comments:

Karen Anne said...

Bird on the ledge below the nestbox. I'm not sure if some prey is in the front right hand side of the nestbox or not.

Karen Anne said...

I think there's (still?) somebody on the ledge.

Anonymous said...

Pax 8.33pm
Falcon still on ledge below the nest

helenhoward said...

620 gmt and there is still a bird on the ledge below the right hand side of the box

Sue H @ Wendover said...

Just to say I'm still here and interested even though "visits" from me are dwindling. I suppose this is inevitable with me being at some distance away and the main attractions having fledged (although the continuing posts are in fact fascinating!!!) I still mean to drop by and see you when I visit "up north" later in the year - and you will be pleased to know that the episode has finally galvanised me into doing what I should have done YEARS ago - and that is join my local Wildlife Trust (which is BBOWT - Bucks, Berks and Oxon). I think of you every day though - I have a wonderful picture of a giant fluffy chick with huge feet being ringed that has pride of place by my desk. I look at it and it makes me smile.
Sue Hetherington, Wendover, Bucks

Karen Anne said...

No bird and whatever was in the nestbox is also gone. I meant to stay up until 2 am or so Eastern time/early morning your time and see if breakfast happened, since that seems to be the time recently, but didn't make it :-)

Nick Brown said...

Sue; very glad to hear you've joined your local wildlife trust! You can get as involved or not as you choose of course...
I'll soon post a brief outline of the Derbyshire Trust in the hope that local peregrine watchers might sign up too.
Nick B
County wildlife trusts may seem like small organisations compared to giants like the RSPB but they do really vital work for wildlife in their local areas. The trust that covers the fens has just been awarded megabucks (some £7-8 million) from the lottery to buy huge areas of farmland to convert back to wetlands...a truly exciting project and the biggest award for a natural heritage project ever I think!

Anonymous said...

15-54 bird on left camera clive @ matlock

Anonymous said...

How lovely to see one of our peregrines on the nest time is 16.27, going by the horizontal crossways barring on the breast i believe this is one of the adult birds, great to see.

helenhoward said...

lovely picture of the godwit. It has a fantastic long beak and almost a duck like appearance

Anonymous said...

Strange legs for a duck don't you think?

Karen Anne said...

Bird on the nest box, but no snack in evidence.

That is some beak on that black tailed godwit.

Anonymous said...

Pax 12.10am (time for bed)
falcon still on the edge of the nest

Anonymous said...

08.43 Is that one of the youngters on the edge of the nest?

Anonymous said...

9.50am no its one of the adults you can see on the tray, mum i think, if it has a white dot on the right cheek though its dad, hope that helped

Anonymous said...

10.12am just to follow up my entry from before, its definately mum on the tray.

Karen Anne said...

I can see why Helen thinks the godwit is ducklike. If you ignore the legs and beak, the rest does remind me of a duck.

Bird on nest, surveying the ground.

Anonymous said...

19.20 Looks like someone is eating supper. It's great that they still like to come back to the nest box. Why not, it is rather cosy. Is this normal behaviour?

Anna, Ripley

Karen Anne said...

Dinner must be over :-) no one home.

Anonymous said...

Pax 11.55pm B.C. time
bird on the nest

Audrey (London UK) said...

10.00a.m. Someone beautiful/handsome lurking!! Made my morning!!

helenhoward said...

thanks karen anne its not just me who has an over active imagination!!

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