Wednesday, 19 February 2014

800 Great Crested Grebes

RSPB - 1000hrs - mild, dry, sunny, sw 2 - Following two days entertaining our 3 year old grandson it was a good to get out and about on what was a cracking spring-like day with Reed Buntings, Cetti`s Warblers and Great Tits all in good voice around the reedbeds and willow swamp. From the causeway road the two Black-throated Divers remained on New Diggings along with two Great White Egrets. Hanson hide was packed with half term birders hoping for a glimpse of the Penduline Tits which hadn`t been seen all morning. Smew, Goldeneye and all the usual ducks were on the lake, plus Chiffchaff in the willows and a couple of Marsh Harriers over.
Dungeness  - A quick scan of the gull flock by the boats revealed little, although they were kept on the move by dog walkers and their uncontrollable mutts; Barney looked on in disgust.
Lade 1400hrs - Wildfowl numbers were similar to the weekend and the Slavonian Grebe was still on the far side of north pit where it spent as much time submerged as on the surface.
With the tide ebbing we headed for Greatstone beach and a scan from the Tavern. On the sands Dunlin and Sanderling numbered 200 each, plus 500 Oystercatchers, 50 Barwits, 20 Grey Plover, 10 Knot and two Redshanks. Amongst the thousand plus gulls were five Littles and two Meds.
Out on the bay the sea was covered in Great Crested Grebes of which I counted a minimum of 800, plus 20 Red-throated Divers and 10 Guillemots.
ps: Some good news broke today for the Romney Marsh as Dungeness `B` Station got the thumbs up for a ten year extension to power generation until 2028. Hopefully, this could pave the way for a third nuclear power station at Dungeness in future.

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