Arriving at Uskmouth, things seemed a bit quiet with very little bird song heard, and lots of people around. However, it quickly improved and started picking up species like Cetti’s Warbler, Reed Warbler, Sedge Warbler and Whitethroat, and after a short while, a male Lesser Whitethroat showed well near the power station. The reeling call of a Grasshopper Warbler was heard, and then the bird was seen reasonably well in a willow tree. The views were good, and even though the bird was often obscured by leaves and branches it stayed in the same tree for at least five minutes, and was then seen briefly in the open on a clump of brambles. A memorable moment, as this is a species I’ve missed out on many times before. A neat male Wheatear was also seen a little later at distance, along with a few commoner species like Great-Crested Grebe, Little Egret, Swallow, Gadwall, Chiffchaff, and Blackcap.
Walking along Saltmarsh Lane, good numbers of warblers were seen, with the highlight being another Lesser Whitethroat.
Birding Goldcliff was a very enjoyable experience after so long, and the birdlife lived up to expectations. On the first lagoon, many Redshank and Dunlin were present with a cracking summer plumage Spotted Redshank and a Greenshank mixed in. Also, four Little-Ringed Plover, a pair of summer plumage Black-Tailed Godwit and a good number of Avocet with a couple of nests occupied already (18 nests occupied in total if all of the lagoons are taken into account).
A drake Garganey was also present with a single Teal, a few Wigeon and a few Shoveler. Plenty of Oystercatcher and Lapwing were around (including a single chick) and a female Wheatear was seen on the dung heap. To finish off the day, eight Whimbrel flew in and circled over the first lagoon. A great day of spring birding!