Saturday 7 January 2017

Displaying Marsh Harriers

Dengemarsh - grey and grim, mild - A circular walk around Dengemarsh was notable for a pair of Marsh Harriers whistling to one another and displaying over the main reedbed. In the stillness and fine drizzle, Cetti`s Warbler, Bearded Tit and Chiffchaff were all noted around the reedbed, plus the usual egrets and ducks on the lake with Snipe and Redshank elsewhere. The weedy field by Springfield Bridge attracted a small number of Linnets, Reed Buntings, Mipits and a hunting Sparrowhawk, but the hayfields and flood were devoid of bird life. The farmland was similarly lifeless apart from a couple of Skylarks and flocks of 60 Mute Swans and 50 Canada Geese. We also had good views of a Brown Hare on the shingle by the return trail.
  Chatting to a couple of birders along the way they reported the Stejneger`s Stonechat at Kerton Road, the Ring-necked Duck on ARC, Slavonian Grebe on New Diggings, Long-eared Owl at roost behind the Dipping Pool and 55 Bewicks Swans at Horses Bones Farm behind Lydd.
  Driving back across the causeway road I noticed several birders being asked to move their cars by the police on the basis that they`re "causing an obstruction". This has become standard practice by the peelers of late, and I`ve given up stopping along this stretch of road for that very reason. If you have to view the lakes from the causeway road your best bet is to park in the ARC car park or by Long Pits and walk, but take care as speeding traffic can make it hazardous.

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