Thursday, September 01, 2011
The Cry of the Curlew
The 1st of September is a special day in the birding calender, it heralds the start of Autumn migrations main event, after the August overture. Apart from a couple of good birds, August was a very quiet time at EIDB. This morning started very slowly just a Chiffchaff and two Reed Warblers. Then I noticed that an easterly wind was blowing up the Thames and strengthening, so time for a river watch. The bright conditions were not condusive to a good passage, but the wind was becoming brisk. A few Common Terns passed through including a juvenile, only the second I have seen this year. After about an hour not much had happened and I was about to leave when I heard the lonesome call of a Curlew, I could not see it at first but it kept on calling, and finally I picked it up flying up the Thames. When it got to the Dome it turned around and flew back downriver. This is a rare species at this site, only one record before today. A total of 16 Common Terns were counted, nothing to write home about, but the 1st of September had worked its magic.