Wednesday, 25 May 2011

Antigua Day 3

Saturday 14th

Saturday morning I covered the same ground as on Friday and got off to an excellent start as I finally managed to see a black whiskered vireo in the hotel grounds. I think these are reasonably common but proved difficult to see; in fact I only ever saw them early morning though I did (once I’d worked out the call) hear them at other times of the day.
Black-whiskered Vireo

I then went out on Devils Bridge again. The 5 semi-palmated plovers were still there but as soon as I reached the sea watch position 2 brown boobies drifted past. A mad scramble to get the camera out resulted in a few record shots.
Brown Boobies

As with the previous day there was a steady stream of sooty terms going past plus Sandwich and least terms and more of the “white” terns (now thought to be roseates).
On the way back the pool had the green heron and the spotted sandpiper but nothing new.
At 10.00 I picked up the hire car (a 4WD) and Angie and I went for a drive around. On the way to Potworks Dam we had white winged pigeon on the outskirts of the nearest town to the hotel  (a town called Willikies )  and at the Potworks dam we had pied grebes, snowy and great egret and a distant tricoloured heron. Whilst parked up I saw a bird fly into a tree and on getting closer saw it was a broad winged hawk:
Broad-winged Hawk

We continued our drive and close to the Sir Viv Richards stadium there were a flock of cattle egret with the road-side goats and I managed some great close-ups.
Cattle Egret

We then visited the mangrove swamp which can be viewed from the Parham Harbour to St Johns road. Here we saw more semi-palmated plovers and ~6 small dark legged waders which I’m pretty sure were semi-palmated sandpipers.
In the afternoon we drove out to Devils Bridge (Angie had not been out there) with Angie stopping the car every time we saw a yellow warbler – the results were spectacular:
Yellow Warbler

These were actually pretty common throughout the island. They could even be seen in the hotel grounds but only in the wilder areas especially areas adjacent to the scrubby areas outside the fence line. I could never get close to these on foot but they seemed to ignore the car completely.
On the point itself it was very much the same as the morning session though there was a small sandpiper present that was probably a semi-palmated but could have been a western sandpiper. These are pretty similar and the pictures I managed were not good enough to tell the difference.

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