Wednesday, 26 September 2012

Bonxies and Spoonbills

Dungeness  - 0930hrs - mild, sunshine and showers, ssw3 - Another day of mixed weather commenced with a seawatch at the fishing boats where PB et al had recorded several Sooty Shearwaters earlier. During my hour there was a steady passage of Gannets, Sandwich, Arctic and Common Terns, 4 Little Gulls, 10 Bonxies, 2 Med Gulls, Guillemot, Common Scoter and Kittiwake. Regular pulses of hirundines, mainly Swallows, pushed out across the choppy waters heading for France.
It seemed odd to be out and about birding without my canine mate snuffling around the boats looking for rats or a fishermans bag to cock his leg up. Barney had a lump removed from his nape on Tuesday so is confined to kennels (Mrs PT currently fussing over him in front of the fire) for a week. His doggy street cred is now completely blown away as he resembles an extra from a Frankenstein movie with a cropped back and head complete with an impressive set of stitches! (see below for the gruesome details).

                                          Spoonbill, roosting on knees, ARC

                                  Juv Kittiwake, Dungeness (a digi-scope flight shot!!!!)

                                Barney, feeling sorry for himself at being left at Plovers

ARC  - From Hanson hide the 2 Spoonbills were still asleep, with one of them roosting on its knees; which immediately transformed it into a gull! The long-staying Pectoral Sandpiper was the only wader on the islands that I could see, while out on the lake a Black-necked Grebe struggled in the  choppy conditions amongst hundreds of hirundines, mainly Sand Martins and 2 Black Terns. Also noted, 6 Pintails, 2 Shelducks and a Garganey within scores of Wigeons, Shovelers, Teals, Gadwalls and Pochards etc.

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