Wednesday 25 May 2022

Sussex Emerald hunt

Dungeness - cool and cloudy, SW 5 - En-route to Dungeness a pause at the Tavern viewpoint for high tide waders included: 280 Oystercatchers, 12 Curlews, 5 Bar-tailed Godwits and a Grey Plover. It was then onto the south end of ARC for a group session crawling around on all fours surveying for Sussex Emerald larvae, in less than favourable weather conditions. However, after an hour and a half we did manage to find six of the well camouflaged little critters, three each on Wild Carrot and Ragwort. 

                                 Sussex Emerald larvae on Ragwort

                                  An adult moth from Plovers trap, 2013

                                  Southern Marsh Orchid, ARC

                                  Great Crested Grebe and Pochard, ARC

Afterwards I called in at the Hanson hide from where at least 50 Swifts and a few each of the three hirundines hawked for insects over the lake, along with a single Hobby. The drake Ring-necked Duck was asleep on the water in front of the hide amongst the usual gathering of diving ducks, and a Common Sandpiper scuttled over the lake calling. Due to the strong breeze passerines were few and far between. Elsewhere on the reserve today the Glossy Ibis and four Cattle Egrets (JY) were seen on Hayfield 3 and Boulderwall fields respectively, while a Purple Heron flew north over Cockles Bridge (MH).

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