Sunday, 20 December 2009
Sunday, 6 December 2009
Despite looking from all the hides there was no sign of the Smew seen the previous day, but on Dengemarsh Pit a couple of Black Necked Grebes were infront of the hide and the Great White Egret was still there
On the way back along the trail a pair of obliging Stonechats and a Reed Bunting posed on the fence.
Next stop was for lunch on the beach at the point, seeing many gulls including Kittiwakes we headed off in search of the reported Snow Buntings, like looking for a needle in a haystack they were eventually found pecking around the first line of vegetation from the sea
Next stop was another visit to the ARC hide again hoping to see Bitterns coming into roost but no luck, the Marsh Harriers were still active setting up the Lapwings and gulls but then a male Hen Harrier appeared setting them all off again.
Just as dusk was to become darkness a pair of Bewick Swans landed on the pit right in front of the hide, a perfect ending to another perfect day birding.
Tuesday, 1 December 2009
At last a clear and settled day on Tuesday, In the afternoon Frank and I set off for a round trip of Pett Level. Parking at Toot Rock we set off along the very high canal, briefly stopping at Carters Flood there were a couple of Tufted Ducks Gadwall and half a dozen Mallard, moving on the canal seemed deserted except for a pair of Stonechat and lots of Wrens. Close to Pannel Valley a large white bird flew up and perched in Oak tree hoping for a Barn Owl on closer inspection turned out to be a Little Egret. In the Pannel Valley hide at last there was water in front of it and birds well 6 Shoveler, 4 Mallard (Its a start)
Setting off again along the canal towards Winchelsea a couple of Cetti's were calling, across the levels Black Headed Gulls were around the floods, hundreds of Lapwing were feeding and a good sized flock of Starlings were displaying. 7 Grey Herons flew up out of a ditch. Onto the beach the light was fading but Curlews and Oystercatchers were calling out from the sands and then a possible Great Skua that dwarfed the Gulls out at the water's edge, but it was really an imature Great Black Backed Gull how the light plays tricks with your mind!!
Saturday, 28 November 2009
Sunday, 22 November 2009
Wednesday pm took a walk from Dogs Hill along the beach to Harbour Farm Barns and back.
Plenty of gulls and several Turnstone, the pools near the barns were empty.
A brief lull in the winds on Saturday morning took me to Pett Pools with 8 Redshank, Shoveler, Mallard, Gadwall, Canada and Greylag Geese, with Golden Plover, Lapwing and Curlew in the fields. On the beach Turnstone, Oystercatcher gulls and a Summer plumage Black Headed Gull
On Sunday despite a forecast of heavy showers and strong winds 6 of us met at 8.30 at the Chichester gravel pits known as Ivy lake in search of the 2 Whooper swans that had been seen several times earlier in the week. On going down the footpath we were told that they had just flown, but continued down to see Gadwall, Shoveler, Tufted Ducks, hundreds of Coote, and plenty of Mute Swans, a Greater Spotted Woodpecker was heard and then seen and a Chiff Chaff also heard. We then set off for the Visitors centre at Sidlesham. At Sidlesham Ferry Pool in the pouring rain of note were Shelduck we then set off for the Advocet roost on the harbour but with the strong winds they must have been sheltering behind a bank as all we could see were several Redshank and Teal on the long channel. on the way back a Cetti's was calling.
Next stop was at Church Norton with the skys darkening we to took the footpath to the hide, as we got in the heavens opened.Closely followed by another party of birders, but we had the front row seats and initially it looked as though the harbour was empty. On close inspection on the mud flats there were hundreds of waders, including Grey Plover, Dunlin, Knot, Ringed Plover, Golden Plover, Curlew, Bar Tailed Godwit. Turnstone, Red Shank, Little Egret, Oyster Catcher the usual Gulls and one Med. Gull. Various ducks, a Kingfisher, heard a Water Rail and, and saw my first Red Breasted Mergansers. A male Kestrel posed on a gravestone in the churchyard. After lunch and a search in the bushes we may have caught a brief sighting of a Firecrest and set for the beach which proved fruitless and with rough seas, gale force winds and once again the rain we hastily returned to the cars. 4 decided to call it a day, that left Paul and two of us to head off to the North Wall. There it was relatively quiet until a female Merlin flew over the Breech Pool sending everything up including hundreds of Black Tailed Godwit, Golden Plover, Lapwing, Wigeon, Teal, and so on, next a female Sparrow Hawk took her turn. Then a couple of hundred Brent Geese appeared in the distance and flew onto the harbour water.
Next on the scene was a Kestrel and all the birds by now were nervous, after seeing a couple of Reed Buntings and 3 Rock Pipits we now became 2 and Paul and I set off back to Ivy Lake for the Whooper Swans. On the first pit we saw hundreds more duck which included Tufted, Shoveler, Wigeon, Pochard, Mallard, Gadwall, and a single Scaup. Despite searching until darkness fell at 4.30 we had no luck with Whooper Swans.
Saturday, 14 November 2009
Very little bird life except for several Chaffinches and a large brown thing was it a Kestrel or maybe a Tawny Owl - we will never know.
Saturday has brought gale force winds the strongest of the Autumn so far, and heavy showers, it doesn't look good for tomorrow either.
Tuesday, 10 November 2009
We fast tracked up the road to Rye Harbour turned down by the Nook Fishery and disturbed a Sparrow Hawk, on harbour farm pools there were a couple of Redshank and at the new hide there was another on the Quarry, in the distance a colony of gulls could be seen along with a few unrecognisable birds due to the bad light. With darkness creeping in we hot footed back along the sea road seeing several flocks of Lapwing heading on to the reserve to roost.
Sunday, 8 November 2009
Saturday, 7 November 2009
Sunday, 1 November 2009
Saturday morning at dawn on the firehills there was very little going on except for a few flocks of small things going high overhead, a couple of flocks of Woodpigeon heading SW and a couple of Yellow Hammers near the car park. A trip in the afternoon over to Cliff End and back found a flock of Gold Finches in Lower Waites Lane
Sunday gale force winds and heavy rain!
Sunday, 25 October 2009
Saturday, 24 October 2009
Friday, 23 October 2009
Friday morning in garden there were a couple of Chiff Chaffs in next doors beech tree. A walk again on Friday late in the afternoon produced of note only Stonechats I think everyone has got their heads down as high winds and heavy rain is forcast for the evening and the following day.
Sunday, 18 October 2009
We managed a total of at least 55 species and for once I have listed all those i can remember.
Gulls -Herring, Common, Lesser Black Backed, Greater Black Backed, Black headedand Mediteranean. A few Oystercatcher, Ducks - Teal, Tufted, Mallard, Wigeon, and my first Golden Eye,
Several Brent Geese, Little Grebe, Great Crested Grebe, Bar Tailed Godwit, Black Tailed Godwit, Green Shank, Red Shank, my first Spotted Redshank, Dunlin, Ringed Plover, Grey Plover, Golden Plover, Turnstone, and Snipe.
Great Tit, Blue Tit, Long Tailed Tit, Blackbird, Robin, Dunnock, Wren, Pied Wagtail, Grey Wagtail, Kestrel, Magpie, Carrion Crow, 2 Buzzards in the distance, A large flock of Green Finches, Gold Finches, Chaffinch, Linnets, a couple of Rock Pipits, Sky Larks, 3 late Swallows 1 late Wheatear, 1 late Reed Warbler, Chiff Chaff, Reed Buntings, Stonechat, at least 25 Little Egrets, Grey Heron and the highlight of the day my first Spoonbill, Water Rail and Cettis Warbler were heard.
A total of 6 butterflies were seen Small White, Copper, Peacock, Red Admiral, Painted Lady, Clouded Yellow.
All in all an absolutely fantastic day birding.
Friday, 16 October 2009
Sunday, 11 October 2009
Friday, 9 October 2009
11 Pied wagtails were on the recreation ground.
Friday heavy rain again and nothing to report
Sunday, 4 October 2009
Dull becoming sunny, wind light North Westerly
Sightings of Note:
Water levels are extremely low however from the view point 3 Bearded Tits crossed the water, in the bushes a Chiff Chaff and a couple of Cettis Warblers were heard calling, 2 Snipe flew over and several Curlew were in the surrounding fields, en route to the hide several Meadow Pipits flew over as well as House and Sand Martins. From the hide 1 Green Sandpiper, Little Grebe, Great Crested Grebe, a Sparrow Hawk swooped over without success, 2 Ravens were croaking overhead, and a Marsh Harrier put in a brief appearance, a Cettis Warbler gave good views in an adjacent blackberry bush. Also seen was a grass snake slithering through the undergrowth in front of the hide, a Comma and Clouded Yellow butterfly
Wall to wall sunshine wind very light north westerly
Sightings of note:
At Dengemarsh road side of the reserve a flock of about 20 Tree Sparrows. 2 Marsh Harriers over Dengemarsh Pits and at least 200 Greylag Geese in the surrounding fields. Along the footpath / trail 1 Wheatear, Green Woodpecker, a female Winchat and a couple of clouded yellow butterflies. At the entrance to the reserve by Boulderwell Farm several birders were lined up to get a glimpse of the Glossy Ibis, in the distance one showed briefly next to a Grey Heron which helped show a comparison. Not stopping at the ARC pit continued around the trail to see a Reed Bunting and a couple of Chiff Chaffs in the bushes. Along the beach towards the power station flocks of Linnetts flitted around and at the Dungeness RHD railway station several Pied Wagtail help clear the crumbs from the cafe's garden. Along the beach a great dissapointment as the outfall from the power station was not running and so what is known as the patch was empty.
The beach held a mixture of Herring, Black Headed and Lesser Black Backed Gulls with 4 Turnstone running along the calm water's edge.