Last Thursday’s walk was very similar to walks I’ve written about previously (a Superb Sully stroll, 23 April 2019, and The Whimbrel and the Barwit, 30 April 2017), and the reason I repeat the walk, sometimes several times, at this time of year is hopefully to catch sight of migrating Whimbrel (and Bar-tailed godwit).
A local birding friend had reported sightings, and the tide was right – as the Bristol Channel has the second highest tidal range in the world, it’s best to look over high tide so the birds are relatively close to the coastal path.
And I was lucky to see several Whimbrel. There were perhaps six or seven birds but I’m not sure of the exact number, as they were quite flighty, and would head off along the beach when disturbed by people and their dogs walking along the path and the rocks.
These birds are part of the annual migration, seen locally during April and May, when Whimbrel that over-winter in West Africa move through to their breeding grounds in more northerly latitudes (according to the Bird Guides website, Iceland, Scandinavia, the Faroes and Shetland are their likely breeding locations.)