Saturday - Dungeness - 0730hrs - mild, dry, sunny, sw 2 - A balmy morning for a wander around the point where to be honest it was very quiet bird wise apart from the regulation Goldfinches, Mipits and Skylarks overhead and on the deck. At the Patch a couple of Med Gulls was about it and in the lighthouse garden Goldcrest and Chiffchaff. The most extraordinary sight of all was watching a French Bulldog and a Fox cavorting around like a pair of puppies playing together - Barney was not impressed!
However, on the walk back we called in and had a chat with Dave Bunney who`d just photographed a Radde`s Warbler in his garden. Unfortunately, we couldn't stay and by the time I returned in late afternoon the bird was showing all too briefly, not that it had been very showy throughout the day by all accounts. The last one was also here in 2006, and I missed that one too. Another great find by DB and well done to Dave and family for being so accommodating to the many visiting birders.
Also, on the bird reserve today, a Red-backed Shrike by the Return Trail and a Cattle Egret on Dengemarsh. On the way out to Brookland this evening we had good views of a Barn Owl at Midley.
Sunday - Lade - On the beach this morning eight species of waders opposite the Tavern included both Grey Plover and Sanderling plus an Arctic Skua chasing the only Sandwich Tern on the bay! Several small parties of Goldfinches and Swallows hurried south into the brisk southerly breeze. All quiet on the pits with the now expected Goldcrests and Chiffchaffs around the ponds and willow swamp.
Walland Marsh - This evening was the first harrier roost count date of the `winter`. In misty, mild weather conditions I accompanied CP for a run out to our usual watch point overlooking a very dried up reedbed. However, this didn't seem to bother the Marsh Harriers with an impressive 22 coming to roost. Also noted a Barn Owl, 20 Golden Plovers, 100 Linnets, 50 Reed Buntings, two Buzzards, a Kestrel, Redpoll over, plus calling Water Rail and Cetti`s Warbler.