Cumbrian Cetti’s

I was up in Barrow today for a Cumbria Bird Club outing on Foulney Island, and then the football. I will write up the Foulney trip tomorrow, the less said about the football the better as although they drew it’s looking increasingly bleak in terms of League status. On the way up to these engagements I took in the upper Leven Estuary at Greenodd and three WeBS counts (Urswick Tarn in Great Urswick and Standing Tarn and Parker’s Pond in Dalton-in-Furness).

At Urswick Tarn I view from the area in the photograph, and then scan from the north end for anything not in view at the first vantage point. The other month I had a Cetti’s Warbler calling, but I didn’t see it and it wasn’t singing. The call is described as an explosive, metallic ‘plitt’ in the Collins Guide. I wouldn’t call it explosive, unlike the song, but I hear it often enough back in Blackpool to be confident even if I don’t see the bird. They aren’t so common in Cumbria though, and I had never seen one.

Today the bird was calling again in the same area. It was zipping around but eventually I got glimpses of it, including the broad tail as it shot off into other reeds out of view. So finally I have seen one on Cumbrian soil, though as with egrets it is less of an achievement than it used to be as they have spread north with warmer temperatures.

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