A fresh NW wind resulted in most birds concentrating in the upper half of the estuary for this afternoon’s cruise. The 2 Black-necked Grebes were back at Cockwood, with 3 nice Goldeneye – the drake tossing his head back in display a few times. There were at least 25 each of Great Crested Grebe and Red-breasted Merganser and good numbers of Cormorants, some already in breeding plumage (as were some of the Shags). Once again there were some 250-300 Pintail feeding with 100+ Bar-tailed Godwits around the mouth of the River Clyst. A white phase Snow Goose was just visible with Canadas over the sea wall near Turf. Crammed in along the river channel at Topsham and giving great views were 600+ Avocets and even more Black-tailed Godwits, and finally the regular Spotted Redshank just as the boat was about to turn around. On the way back to Exmouth we saw about 50 Knot and 100+ Grey Plover and a few Ringed Plover on the mud towards Powderham, and finally small numbers of Sanderlings along the central sandbanks.
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