Thursday, 15 September 2016

Warblers, chats and waders

Lade - warm, dry, sunny, ne 2 - A pretty decent couple of hours birding the local patch delivered a scattering of Wheatears, Mipits, Yellow Wagtails, two Whinchats, Black Redstart and a Skylark grounded on the Desert, while hundreds of hirundines, mostly House Martins, crowded onto the power lines twittering away merrily. Around the willow swamp at least ten each of Chiffchaff and Blackcap, plus several Reed Warblers, Common and Lesser Whitethroats, a Kingfisher and a brief glimpse of a Water Rail on the bare mud now showing around the margins. A Golden Plover flew over calling forlornly, two Marsh Harriers quartered the back fields and a steady flow of Sandwich Terns came off the bay. On south lake a flock of 30 Wigeons was noteworthy.

                               A parched Desert

                                Hirundines preparing to head off south

   Considering how humid it was last night the only downer was the lack of moths in the garden trap with a paltry 15 species of macros present, including Square-spot Rustic, Lunar Underwing new for the year, plus Chinese Character and Snout.

                                        Lunar Underwing

ARC - 1130hrs - There was plenty of interest on offer from Hanson hide with a large flock of Golden Plovers and Lapwings on the stony islands. Within the throng were 10 Barwits, six Blackwits, six Snipe, two Grey Plovers, Knot, Ruff and Greenshank, several Pintails and a Garganey. Also present, a Great White Egret, two Marsh Harriers and a Kingfisher, plus hundreds of hirundines on the move. More common passage warblers were in the bushes around the car park and along the willow trail.

                                Godwits and Greenshank

                                Juvenile Knot

                                Grey Plover and Lapwing

Greatstone Beach - 1400hrs - On a falling tide the sands was packed with gulls, terns and eight species of shorebirds. I didn't have too long but a count of 120 Barwits was notable along with 250 Sandwich Terns and a Black Tern.
  Another superb day of migrants across the Dungeness NNR.

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