Sunday 18 November 2012

WeBS, Harriers & a Crane

Lade - 0800hrs - Cool, dry, sunny, light airs - After the gloomy weather conditions of the past few days was good to see sunshine and blue skies; just the job for counting wildfowl and raptors. A thorough check of boths pits resulted in the most numerous waterfowl being 352 Coots, whilst in amongst the diving ducks were 2 Goldeneyes and a juv Long-tailed Duck on north pit. Plenty of other bird activity around the site including both woodpeckers, 2 Kestrels, 4 Marsh Harriers and singles of Reed Bunting, Cetti`s Warbler, Chiffchaff, Goldcrest and Kingfisher.

                                          Lade `Mirror`

                                         Romney Bay Hotel, Littlestone

Littlestone - A stroll along the beach in warm sunshine, while pleasant, failed to deliver yesterdays Snow Bunting. All I could muster were several Mipits and Pied Wagtails, roosting Turnstones and Sanderlings on the shingle, plus a grey seal just offshore.
Somewhere on Walland Marsh - 1500hrs - Accompanied Marshman on the monthly harrier roost count on a glorious afternoon/evening with absolutely no wind and bright skies. En-route plenty of winter thrushes seen along the lanes, plus more thrushes and Lapwings on the walk to the roost site. The adult Common Crane showed well throughout the stake out before flying off at sunset. Bearded Tits and Water Rails sounded off in the reedbed while at least 30 Snipe came and went, also 4 Ruff, 50 Golden Plovers and 200 Lapwings. Raptors included at least 4 Common Buzzards, Peregrine, Kestrel and Sparrowhawk, plus a total of 29 Marsh Harriers coming to roost over a 25 minute period. We also had flight views of a Bittern and an `eared ` owl. As we left over 1,000 Grey Lags came in to roost on the open water. A fitting end to a terrific day.

                                          Common Crane, Walland Marsh

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