Wednesday 4 May 2016

Little Terns & Grey Partridge

Dungeness - 0845hrs - warm, dry, sunny, sw2 - A glorious morning to be in the field, but not for seawatching! All we noted during an hour from the hide was a steady trickle of Gannets, Common and Sandwich Terns up-Channel, plus 25 Common Scoters, 2 Brents and singles of Black-throated Diver and a pale phase Arctic Skua. The warm sunshine had brought forth several small coppers and our first small heath of the spring.

                                Small Copper, Dungeness

RSPB - No doubt about bird of the day: a flock of eight delightful Little Terns on Burrowes among 50 Common Terns. Also on the lake the long-staying Black-necked Grebe, but little else. Around the circular walk the usual warblers, Marsh Harrier, booming Bittern, Swifts and Yellow Wagtails over, Buzzard, Redshanks and Lapwings with chicks on the hayfields. From the access road four Whimbrels and Tree Sparrows on the Boulderwall feeders.

                                Common Tern, Dengemarsh
                                Comma, Return Trail

                               Grey Heron with marsh frog, hayfields
Scotney - An afternoon visit to the farm yielded the usual Yellow Wagtails and Corn Buntings, plus Avocets, 2 Mediterranean Gulls, Egyptian Geese, Kestrel and a Common Sandpiper on the front lake.
Dengemarsh - A superb evening with light airs and a stunning sunset. Just before Springfield bridge on road side wires a cock Whinchat showed well, plus Yellow Wagtails, Linnets, Sedge Warblers, Whitethroats, two Marsh Harriers and a booming Bittern at Hooker`s.
Galloways - At least six Stonechats along the road to the sea, plus Mipit, Linnets and singing Grey Partridge out on the ranges, our first record of this rapidly declining species for two years. Also noted three foxes and two hares. By the watch tower near Brett`s a Little Owl showed briefly to round off another bird-rich day across the Dungeness peninsula.

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