Wednesday 24 September 2014

Sooty Shearwater

Lade - mild, cloudy, drizzle - A Goldcrest and Chiffchaff in the pines around the cottage and  hirundines and a Grey Wagtail overhead was a promising start to the day whilst emptying a spartan moth trap.
Dungeness - 0915hrs - We joined TG in the seawatch hide for an hour in hazy light. A steady flow of Gannets and Sandwich Terns were on the move offshore, plus a Guillemot on the sea, an adult Med Gull came and went, but bird of the watch was a distant Sooty Shearwater heading east. At the Patch amongst hundreds of common gulls were singles of Black Tern and Little Gull, Kittiwake and Sandwich Terns. The land was quiet with just a few Chiffs in the lighthouse garden, single Wheatear and Black Redstart by West Beach and the usual Mipits and Linnets over. At least 10 Kestrels were noted from the point to the bird reserve.
RSPB 1200hrs - From the access track two Stonechats, a Whimbrel and eight Kestrels. Whilst having lunch in the car park Buzzard, Sparrowhawk and five Kestrels noted, plus Skylark and Yellow Wagtail overhead. Burrowes was quiet with just three Great White Egrets, three Dunlin and two Ringed Plovers of note amongst the common wildfowl, Lapwings, Golden Plovers and ducks, plus cracking views of a male Peregrine tussling with the inevitable Kestrel.
From the viewing ramp at Dengemarsh plenty of raptors on show including 20 Kestrels, five Marsh Harriers and four Buzzards, plus Bearded Tits and Cetti`s Warbler (heard), two Great White and five Little Egrets and two Ravens.
From Screen hide Glossy Ibis and Great White Egret, two Black-necked Grebes, six Ruff, Garganey, plus all the usual wildfowl and Lapwings. By the car park, two Blackcaps and three Tree Sparrows feasting on ripe blackberries.

                               Tree Sparrow, RSPB

Dungeness - 1530hrs - An hour at the fishing boats delivered cracking views of a Red-throated Diver and Guillemot, plus a few Common and Sandwich Terns fishing offshore and several Porpoises.
Walland Marsh - A drive out to Midley this evening delivered a brief view of Barn Owl for one of the group and a Merlin for all of us. A Kingfisher called along the main sewer and several Foxes and a bat sp were noted on the drive back. 

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