Thursday 24 May 2018

Black Terns

Dungeness - muggy, overcast, showers, light airs - We started off with an hour at the seawatch/Patch hides where a stilted flow of migrant Common Terns was underway up-Channel, plus a flock of 13 Black Terns, a Little Tern, 20 Sandwich Terns, seven Redshanks, a Grey Plover, two Fulmars, 20 Gannets, 10 Kittiwakes and 10 Common Scoters. On the land Black Redstart, Stonechat, Wheatear, Skylark, Mipit, Linnet, Whitethroat, Kestrel and Peregrine all noted.

                                Sea Kale in full bloom

                                Juvenile Stonechat

Scotney - On the front field the only bird of note was a cracking adult Bar-tailed Godwit in full breeding plumage. Out back all the usual Yellow Wagtails, Corn Buntings, a Little Owl, several Sedge Warblers, Marsh Harrier and two Sand Martins. Waders included two Sanderlings, several Ringed Plovers, six Avocets and two Common Sandpipers. On the way back a flock of 80 Common Terns fizzed through purposely heading inland.

                                Little Owl, Scotney

Burrowes - There was a constantly changing bird scene here this afternoon during our two visits, in perfect weather conditions for migrant terns and waders. Ten each of Turnstones, Sanderlings, Dunlins, Ringed Plovers and Redshanks were scattered across the islands, plus four Grey Plovers through, a spanking Curlew Sandpiper in nuptial plumage, Curlew, Common Sandpiper, a Little Ringed Plover and two small, dark Ringed Plovers with hardly any orange on the bare parts of the race tundrae. Also around Burrowes, two Hobbies, Egyptian Geese with goslings and four Little Gulls that mercilessly mobbed a Crow pecking over the carcass of a Black-headed Gull.

                                Black Terns

                                Crow tucking into a dead Black-headed Gull

  However, the star turn was a flock of seven Black Terns, that were joined later by ten more, flying up and down the lake in front of Dennis`s hide and occasionally landing on an island. All 17 moved in a tight flock keeping in touch with a squeaky contact call, pure magic. Apparently there was a large movement of Black Terns across the country today.
  Late local news today concerned a Long-tailed Skua at Dungeness that was tracked up-Channel at Hythe and Folkestone, and a Broad-billed Sandpiper at Rye Harbour.

No comments:

Post a Comment