It had been some time since I had last photographed avocets.I had heard that two pairs of avocets were nesting in front of Sandgrounders hide at Marshside RSPB.As the settled weather was here for the week I decided to try my luck at obtaining some images.The two pairs of avocets were posing beautifully about ten yards in front of the hide.From time to time the pair would exchange nesting duties.This gave an opportunity to see the eggs.One pair had four eggs and the other two eggs.The avocets were on a shingle island immediately in front of the hide and all around were dozens of pairs of nesting black headed gulls.The area has had an electric fence erected. This will be to protect the avocet chicks when they arrive from predation.In previous years many chicks have been taken by foxes.
I then moved on to have a look up the road at Nel's hide.This area is still very much under water from the winter storms and is only drying out very slowly.Consequently there is not much wet ground or mud for the waders and the normally present black tailed godwits were not around. There was however another two pairs of avocets nesting on some dry ground not far way.One of these avocets was being bothered by a canada goose which was in danger of trampling on the nest and eggs. The parent bird was going frantic and was attacking the goose to drive it away. After many minutes it was successful and peace returned to the area.Avocets are wonderful parents and will attack any intruders in the vicinty of the nest.
This gave me some more opportunities for the camera and I was able to grab a few more action shots of this altercation.I enjoyed seeing avocets again and I hope the electric fence keeps the predators away and that the avocets have a successful breeding season.Thanks for looking in and hope you enjoy my selection of images from the day at Marshside.