Monday, 23 March 2020

Early spring migrants

Dungeness - cold, dry and sunny, se2 - There was only four cars in the RSPB car park mid-morning and during a self-isolating circuit of the bird reserve I only encountered two other people. However, despite the surreal atmosphere there were a few spring migrants on offer, the highlights being: a Firecrest and several Chiffchaffs by Firth hide; single Black-necked Grebes on Burrowes and Dengemarsh; a Jack Snipe by the corral; a Water Pipit on Hayfield 1 and a flyover Yellow Wagtail, my first of the spring. Elsewhere en-route several Marsh Harriers, Common Buzzard, Kestrel, Sparrowhawk, Great White Egret, Lapwings, Redshanks, four Dunlins, Raven and plenty of Cetti`s Warblers and Reed Buntings in song. 
  At Lade a check of the beach revealed my first Sandwich Tern of spring, while on south lake five Goldeneyes were present. Another Firecrest was in the Plovers garden this afternoon.

                                Lapwing on the Hayfield


  1. Paul for Jack Snipe please enlighten me where the Corral is on the reserve? And is it simply a case of scanning tussocks to locate it? BTW you had a good day for new spring birds Thankyou Chris Gillard better to contact

  2. Hi Chris, the Corral is just north of the Return Trail junction with the main bridleway and track to Lydd. The Jack Snipe was a typical in flight sighting as it flushed up from a wet field. With the new travel restrictions in place I think the birds will have the place largely to themselves this spring. However, I`m expecting some pretty impressive garden sightings over the coming weeks from bloggers across the Dungeness area and beyond! Paul