Yesterday morning turned out grey and cool, but by mid morning the sun was out and it was a lovely day.
JWR and myself checked out the estuaries of the rivers Aln and Coquet, our two nearest rivers.
Alnmouth was quiet other than a few Teal and Wigeon, a pair of Gadwall and half a dozen Snipe. A Chiffchaff was singing in the willows on the edge of the golfcourse pond, where 2 Coots, 2 Teal, 2 Mallard and 6 Moorhen were the only waterfowl. Green Alkanet was in flower along the banksides.
Down to Warkworth where we walked to the north side of the Coquet. This used to be our patch in the mid 90's but I havent been here for years. Its changed a bit, mainly with picnic sites left uncut and overgrown, creating more cover for migrants! See cut backs (or lack of them) aren't all bad....
Two pairs of Stonechat were pleasing to see, having survived the winter. One of the females seemed to vanish down onto her nest while the male sang overhead. On the estuary itself, 30+ Redshank, 28+ Knot, 50+ Curlew, a few Dunlin, 1 female Red breasted Merganser, 20 Wigeon and a smatter of Teal, 8 Goldeneye flew off overhead and out to see, while my first hirundine, a Sand Martin, skimmed over head, north.
A tall Sallow here was humming with Bumble Bees and my first butterfly, a Small Tortoiseshell was sunning on the track
Back home Howick Pond was leaping with ( or should I say 'humping with') Toads all in a spawning frenzy...