Thursday 29 March 2012

Over the Border - Rye Harbour NR

Rye Harbour NR - 0930hrs - Spent the morning on the coastal section of the reserve (many thanks to Lucy for arranging access for the group) where major civil engineering works was underway along the western bank of the Rother. Despite the comings and goings Flat Beach looked in superb nick and was full of birds. We quickly rattled up a fair old wader list: 13 Avocets, 10 Oystercatchers, 12 Ringed Plovers, 10 Lapwings, 20 Redshanks, most of which were in breeding mode; plus 20 Dunlins, 2 Grey Plovers and a flock of 315 Goldies close to the main path. Also, 4 Brents, 20 Shelducks, Little Egret, Skylark, Mipit, Linnets, and a Rock Pipit.
The seabird colony on Ternery Pool, with the new shingle islands was an incredible sight and alive with the cacophony of around 1,000 Black-headed Gulls, 300 Sandwich Terns and 400 Mediterranean Gulls, which was very much a minimum count. The views from Crittal hide of the terns and Meds was simply stunning. As the tide came in 100 Oystercatchers and 11 Barwits joined the throng to roost.
A brilliant morning and testament to the management teams vision and hard work; and there`s still the Common and Little Terns to come!
Pett Pools - 1330hrs - A check from the roadside revealed 15 Curlews, 12 Redshanks, 30 Turnstones, 6 Wigeons, 2 Shovelers, Little Egret and Dabchick. From the seawall several Fulmars on the cliffs at Cliff End and a `kettle` of 5 Buzzards over the distant hills.
Woolpack - 1500hrs- A quick look across the reedbed revealed very little apart from a few harriers. On the reservoir over 100 Common and 20 Med Gulls.
Dungeness  - 1600hrs - Back on the coast and nothing much of note on the bird reserve, although  Black-necked Grebe and LRP reported from the south end of ARC. On the sea, from the boats, a brief seawatch produced 8 Common Terns, 20 Sandwich Terns, 3 Brents, 3 mergansers, 2 divers and 3 porpoises.

                                           Avocets, Flat Beach

                                           Ternery Pool

                                          Med Gulls & Sandwich Terns, Ternery Pool

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