Monday 19 September 2016

Rose-coloured Starling

Dungeness - warm, dry, cloudy, n 2 - 0730hrs - A few more migrants about the place than of late with hundreds of hirundines and Mipits along the beach between the lifeboat station and the lighthouse, plus 10 Wheatears and five Yellow Wagtails grounded and a Merlin chasing pipits. A few Goldfinches and Grey Wagtails drifted over calling, while at least 20 Chiffchaffs and five Common Whitethroats were in the bushes around the point and the southern end of the Trapping Area. A brief look at the sea revealed the usual Sandwich Terns along the shore, a few Gannets and porpoises and two Arctic Skuas chasing the terns.

                                Meadow Pipit, one of hundreds on the beach this morning

1300hrs - A juvenile Rosy Starling found in a Starling flock by TG necessitated a return to the point this afternoon. The flock was fairly mobile as they moved between the Obs and the power station pylons, occasionally dropping down to feed on the turf, and conveniently perching on overhead wires by West Beach to allow a couple of record shots. Rosy Starlings are rare in these parts and this was only my fourth since moving here almost 11 years ago. A typically pale juvenile individual with contrasting dark wings and yellowish base to the bill, and a welcome bit of quality at last.

                                Rosy Starling juvenile, Dungeness

Lade - More Chiffchaffs continued to move through the peninsula this afternoon with at least 30 birds around Lade and in the garden. This evening, whilst walking Barney, I watched one come to grief in the talons of a Sparrowhawk.
  Conditions seemed perfect this evening for moths, being still, humid and overcast, so on went the mv...

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