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May 2016 Diary
Sightings, news and photos from Chasewater and surrounding areas.
Scroll down to view the whole month.

For latest bird news in the local area see Staffordshire Bird News (external link)


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 Sun 1st No records
Mon 2nd Four Common Terns and 3 Common Sandpipers were present during the evening.
Tues 3rd Seven Common Terns, 2 Common Sandpipers and 2 Lesser Whitethroats were present.
On Cuckoo Bank a Cuckoo was present (ICW).
Wed 4th No records.
Thurs 5th On Cuckoo Bank there were 3 Wheatears and 2 Whinchats.
Fri 6th
On April 18th, fencing operations at Anglesey Basin unfortunately caused considerable damage to the heath it was intended to protect. The bog area containing Round-leaved Sundew and Deer Grass was badly churned up and the main Green Hairstreak area of Bilberry was damaged and cut trees laid across it. It brings back memories of sub-contractors cutting down willow scrub to help manage the Round-leaved Wintergreens on the North Heath only to burn the cuttings on top of the wintergreens! (GE).
Sat 7th An Oystercatcher, 2 Little Ringed Plovers, 3 Common Sandpipers and 4 Common Terns were present during the morning and 12 Common Terns were seen during the evening.
Sun 8th 13 Black Terns and a Common Sandpiper were present in the morning till around 10:50 (PW, GR).
Mon 9th The monthly Wetland Bird Survey (WeBS) produced 72 Mute Swans, 9 Canada Geese, 60 Mallard, 12 Tufted Ducks, 1 Cormorant, 2 Grey Herons, 15 Great Crested Grebes, 3 Moorhens, 72 Coot, 2 Oystercatchers, 2 Little Ringed Plovers, 2 Lapwings, 1 Common Sandpiper, 1 Black Tern (at 08:30), 1 Common Tern, 70 Black-headed Gulls, 20 Lesser Black-backed Gulls and 2 Herring Gulls. 5 Buzzards, 40 Swifts and 3 Willow Tits were also seen along with several Large Red Damselflies, 2 Dingy Skippers, 4 Green Hairstreaks, a Small Copper, several Orange Tips, 2 Speckled Woods and a Peacock (GE). During the evening there were 3 Oystercatchers, 2 Dunlin and 4 Common Terns.

Green Hairstreak (GE)

Large Red Damselfly (GE)
Tues 10th At 07:00 there were 2 Common Terns and a Black Tern, increasing to 7 Common and 5 Black Terns during the day. A Sanderling, 2 Dunlin, a Redshank, a Little Ringed Plover, a Common Sandpiper and an Oystercatcher were also present. A day of persistant rain which briefly stopped around 18:00 when three flocks of 17 (Common), 25( mainly Common) and at least 70 (Arctic) terns dropped in and flew out to the east over the dam. Therefore total numbers were estimated to have involved at least 70 Arctic Terns and over 35 Common Terns (PJ, IW).
A Red Kite flew east over Cuckoo Bank at 09:00.
Wed 11th No terns were seen until around 10:00 when a Common Tern arrived closely followed by a Black Tern. Common Tern numbers then rose to 10 along with 2 Arctic Terns. Only 3-4 Common Terns remained during the afternoon along with the Black Tern which was joined by 4 others during the early evening when 8 probable Arctic Terns flew through to the east and 3 Goosanders flew north-east. Also present were 2 Common Sandpipers, 2 Little Ringed Plovers, a Yellow Wagtail, a Shelduck, 60 Swifts, 200 House and Sand Martins, 2 Garden Warblers and the pair of Mute Swans on the Swag have six small cygnets (GE, PW, PJ).
Thurs 12th An exciting start to the day when at 07:15 a harrier sp (probably Hen Harrier). flew through followed at 07:30 by 2 pale phase skuas sp.(now believed to be Pomarine Skuas) flying to the north-east over the dam: the camera was still in the car! The 5 Black Terns were initially present but departed amid a passage of two flocks of 12 and 10 Arctic Terns. The 3 Common Terns remained along with a 3 Little Ringed Plovers, a Common Sandpiper and an Oystercatcher. A further party of around 10 Arctic Terns arrived after mid-day (PW).
Fri 13th Four Black Terns appeared at 10:00, increasing to 5 during the day, 12 'Commic Terns' (6 Common and at least 2 Arctic) were also present along with a Hobby, 2 Little Ringed Plovers, a Common Sandpiper and an Oystercatcher (PW, PJ).
Sat 14th Four Black Terns and 5 Arctic Terns departed east over the dam at 07:15 with 1 Black Tern and 6 Common Terns remaining. Also present were 2 Little Ringed Plovers, a Common Sandpiper, a Shelduck and a Cuckoo was on the North Heath. Seven Garden Warblers were in song and a Willow Tit was along the west shore (PJ).
Sun 15th The single Black Tern eventually left during the evening. 4 Common Terns were present (PW).
On Cuckoo Bank there were 2 pairs of Willow Tits, a singing Tree Pipit, a Cuckoo and a Grasshopper Warbler (PJ).
Mon 16th Two Common Terns and 2 Little Ringed Plovers were present (PW).
Tues 17th A Ringed Plover, an Oystercatcher, 2 Little Ringed Plovers and 3 Common Terns were present (PW).
Wed 18th Two Ringed Plovers were joined by another during the evening along with the 2 Little Ringed Plovers (PW).
Thurs 19th Six Common Terns, a Ringed Plover and 2 Little Ringed Plovers were present (PW).
Fri 20th 2 Little Ringed Plovers and 4 Common Terns were present (PW).
Sat 21st 2 Little Ringed Plovers and 3 Common Terns were seen (PW).
Sun 22nd 2 Little Ringed Plovers and 4 Common Terns were present (PW).
Mon 23rd 2 Little Ringed Plovers and 4 Common Terns were noted again (PW).
Tues 24th 2 Little Ringed Plovers and 8 Common Terns were seen (PW). Only a Blue-tailed Damselfly and Common Blue Damselfly were seen along the canal in Anglesey Basin where extensive submerged lawns of Shoreweed and Floating Water-plantain were present (GE).
Wed 25th An Oystercatcher, 2 Little Ringed Plovers and 4 Common Terns were present (PW).
Thurs 26th A Common Sandpiper, 2 Little Ringed Plovers and 4 Common Terns were present (PW).
Fri 27th A Red Kite flew south-west over Burntwood (PW).
Sat 28th A Red Kite drifted south over the dam at 09:30 (PW) and was also seen over Wembley Lane, Burntwood (GHa). Three Common Terns and 2 Little Ringed Plovers were also present (PW).
Sun 29th No records
Mon 30th No records
Tues 31st No records