Trip reports

Warsash and Hook Spit 2017

Warsash and Hook Spit 2017
Chris Robinson

Saturday, 4 November 2017

With an unpromising forecast and a wet start to the day, only four members (and one non-member) arrived in Warsash for the walk.

With a high spring tide still flowing and not due to ease until after lunch, the group set off inland along Bunny Meadows. With the foreshore covered birds were, initially, hard to come by - a cormorant flying downstream, two little grebe, a buzzard on a dead tree and rock pipit, reed bunting and stonechat providing good views along the sea wall.

Eventually, in the furthest tide-fed lagoon, things improved with large numbers of waders - including stunning golden and grey plover, black-tailed godwit, snipe and others with a range of ducks and gulls. The return to the carpark for a coffee stop was much the same as the outward trip, though little egret were plentiful.

Fed and watered and with a brightening sky, we set of for Hook Spit and the Scrape. With the tide still high nothing was seen until we were beyond the Spit, apart from Canada geese and wigeon on the pond. All except the writer found a great crested grebe off-shore.

The scrape was more productive with a good range of ducks - gadwall, shelduck, teal, wigeon and Canada geese and two female pintail, joined by a single male. As we left the scrape my excellent companions managed to put me onto the great crested grebe (Hooray!) just as 3 female mergansers flew in and landed by the shoreline. Were were no more than 100 yards from the scrape when a flock of around 30 more pintail flew over to land there.

We had another quiet return walk to Warsash, slightly enlivened by a kestrel and what was, almost certainly a skylark flying low across the inlet to land (hidden) on the spit. A flock of turnstone flew past us and were found (40 birds) on the shingle beach by the sailing club.

The drive home, like the drive there was done with the wipers going, but we had had a mostly dry and enjoyable day.

Species list (44 birds):
Curlew, Golden Plover, Grey Plover, Dunlin, Little Grebe, Grey Heron, Little Egret Black-Headed Gull, Herring Gull, Common Gull, Cormorant, Rock Pipit, Reed Bunting, Pied Wagtail Stonechat, Wigeon, Teal, Shelduck, Brent Goose, Buzzard, Snipe, Starling, Lapwing, Redshank, Crow, Wood Pigeon, Black-Tailed Godwit, Meadow Pipit, Mallard, Magpie, Oystercatcher, Shoveler, Gadwall, Moorhen, Pintail, Canada Goose, Great Crested Grebe, Red Breasted Merganser, Kestrel, Skylark, Dunnock, Robin, Turnstone