Tuesday night saw the Little Egret record broken again when 37 birds were counted roosting in the Willows on the Willow Pool. I arrived quite late in the Wath Ings hide at 19.15 and five Egrets were already in the trees. Birds were late to arrive with only eight in by 20.39, however there was a real rush between 20.40 and 21.21 when the last Egret flew in from down the valley. At 20.59 a couple of Foxes appeared on the spit at Wath Ings and disturbed the roosting Egrets, they were very vocal and eventually 11 birds flew out and started circling the Foxes. At the same time another eight Egrets arrived from up the valley and all 19 birds were in the air for a few minutes before settling back into the Willows, a fantastic spectacle.
For the record the Egrets came in as follows - 5 already in, 1 @ 19.15, 1 @ 19.20, 1 @ 20.00, 2 @ 20.40, 4 @ 20.45, 3 @ 20.48, 2 @ 20.49, 2 @ 20.50, 8 @ 20.59, 1 @ 21.02, 4 @ 21.08, 2 @ 21.11 and finally 1 @ 21.21. All the Egrets came in from up the valley apart from five which came in from down the valley. In recent days up to 15 Egrets have been seen at Broomhill Flash in the daytime and up to 10 have been at Adwick.
Thanks go to Dave Waddington for counting the Egrets from the River Bank and Dave Bamforth for reports from Broomhill Flash. At least 2 colour ringed birds are in the area, our old favourite FJ and also NL which has also been with us some time.
Also roosting were 38 Cormorants and a steady Northerly passage of 220 Swifts and c400 House Martins were a pleasant sight. At least 4 Barn Owls were out hunting, 2 juvenile Shelducks were flying about and an adult and juvenile Common Tern flew over to the Mere to roost.
Other birds seen on the Reserve by Dave Waddington included the following :- Bittern 1, Garganey 1, Water Rail 6, Tawny Owl 3, Little Stint 1, Dunlin 2 and Oystercatcher 2.
A great nights birding and I plan to do it all again as soon as possible.