Saturday, 6 December 2014

Snow Bunting - a patch tick

Lade - 0900hrs - cold, sunny, nw 2 - At long last the gloom lifted from this most south-easterly corner of the Kingdom resulting in a sparkling morning with a light hoar frost sprinkled over the storm beach pebbles, perfect weather conditions for giving the local patch a thorough going over.  First off Mockmill where single figures of Song Thrush, Blackbird, Redwing, Reed Bunting and Snipe were noted in sewer scrub and marsh, followed by two each of Marsh Harrier, Buzzard and Stonechat behind the `mirrors`, plus ten Skylarks over and at least 200 Curlews roosting out the high tide. The lakes had the usual wildfowl, including a Red Crested Pochard, but there was no sign of the recent Smew. Around the willow swamp Goldcrests and Chiffchaffs in a tit flock and vocalising Water Rails and Cetti`s Warblers, plus Kingfisher and Green Woodpecker.
We then completed the circuit back along the beach being careful not to flush the roosting Oystercatchers. Several Skylarks, Pied Wagtails and a Song Thrush were briefly disturbed, while at the Lade end a Snow Bunting flew down the beach calling, from Dungeness way heading towards Greatstone. I managed to get reasonable views of what was a bright individual and probably the one that`s been along the coastline for several weeks now. As this part of the foreshore is included in my expansive local patch, Snow Bunting is now firmly on that list.
Something else that struck me this morning was the number of plant species still in flower, chiefly gorse, but also evening primrose, vipers bugloss, dolly bells, valerian, hawksbit, herb Robert and even a bramble. At Greatstone dunes, which was fully sheltered from the wind and in full sunshine, a  gorgeous splash of sea rocket blooms made a mockery of the low temperatures, although snuggled into the marram grass checking out the scurrying Sanderlings and Dunlins the warmth of the suns rays were very much appreciated.

                                Sea Rocket, Greatstone beach

New Diggings - 1330hrs - En-route to Lydd this afternoon a pause along the causeway road delivered four Goosanders and two Great White Egrets, as per yesterday. After pulling up parsnips and leaks at the allotment I couldn`t resist another look at the Dengemarsh Cattle Egrets, both of which were showing like good `uns close to the road feeding amongst the cows.
Arrived home to the news of a thumping 2-0 home win for QPR to take them out of the relegation zone, how sweet is that...

                                  Cattle Egrets, Dengemarsh Road


No comments:

Post a Comment