Ashley River Estuary Field Trip – 4th Nov 2017

Trip Guides: Kath and Rob

Trip Report: Maureen

An interesting day weatherwise, and a very interesting day for bird life. Thanks to Rob and Kath for organising and giving us all the opportunity to learn about and photograph some of the birds that frequent the estuary, and the sand dunes. Rob was there bright and early watching the white heron with his telescope, and when everyone arrived we moved off down the beach there were plenty of other birds to see.

Included in the list: dotterel – including a nesting pair; spoonbills; wrybills; black billed, black backed and red billed gulls; Caspian, black fronted and white fronted terns; spotted, pied and little shags; SIP and variable oystercatchers; godwits; and a knot that was masquerading as a tattler. There were interesting sand patterns and cloud patterns too.

As the NW wind got up, and the sand started blowing we moved back down the beach to a sheltered area of the park for lunch. After lunch it was a quick roadside stop to see the shag colony – and what should appear but a crested grebe, along with coot, scaup, pukeko and of course the shags. A great morning/afternoon full of interest and with lovely company.

Thank you.

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