Sunday, 23 July 2017

Bonaparte's Gull at Oare Marsh

Another trip to Oare today to get the old fella a year tick with the Bonaparte's Gull which we very quickly found feeding out on the mud to the right of the slip way.
A couple of Whimbrel was the only other bird of note on the mud but back on the reserve we had a couple of Turtle Dove, at least nine adult Curlew Sandpipers, a single Spotted Redshank and the other usual waders etc in good numbers.


Bearded Reedling

A quick stop at Cliffe on the way was disappointing  as the Marsh Sandpiper had been flushed by a Peregrine early this morning and failed to show during our stay. We'd seen it before but wanted a closer look from Radar pool. Large numbers of Greenshank roosted and a couple of Common Sands were seen before we left for home and an appointment with some skirting boards I'd promised to keep. Of note was the massive flock of Hirundines numbering well over a thousand as we left Cliffe heading for the M2.

Year list now 246

Friday, 21 July 2017

Another day another Fox

No apologies......just some more Fox shots!

Fox focus
Fox watching pigeons
Just chilling
Fox looking me in the eye
My favourite

Monday, 17 July 2017

Swallows at Minsmere

A few more images from the weekends trip to Minsmere.

Looking at me looking at you
Swallow at Minsmere

Saturday, 15 July 2017

Vagrant Emperor Minsmere

With the Jims needing Roseate Tern for a life tick I took them up to Minsmere today arriving at about 6.30am. We headed out along North Wall and plotted up in the Public hide that overlooks South scrape. With no sign of the target we continued to scan finding twenty plus Little Gulls with some in full summer breeding plumage. A Little Tern and several Sandwich Terns mixed up the count with the breeding Common Terns. Med Gulls have had a good year here and a trio of Kittiwakes was a nice find too.
The wader count was pretty good with Spotted Redshank, Green Sand, Common Sand, Lapwing, Blackwit, Avocet, Ringed Plover, Redshank, Oystercatcher to name a few.

Marsh Harriers and Bearded Tits showed themselves along with Whitethroat, Lesser Whitethroat, Stonechat and the usual Warblers but for me the star birds were the Swallows at the sluice gates.

Unfortunately despite a six hour shift we failed to connect with the Rosie Tern so that tick will have to wait for another day but any day at Minsmere is one to be remembered.

Little Stunner
what a star!
Common Tern
Young Robin in the garden 3rd single bird brood this year!
Young Stonechat at Minsmere
And another Fox to finish.
Oh and on another note....Jimmy just text to say the Dragonfly we took a photo of today may be a rare visitor (we wouldn't know!) He put it out on twitter hoping somebody would put a name to it and it seems to be considered a Vagrant Emperor which he's been told is quite twitchable in the dragonfly circles so here's my shot hoping it helps with a positive ID for those interested.

Vagrant Emperor at Minsmere ?
Note: Jimmy has now had the ID confrimed by the British Dragonfly society

Thursday, 13 July 2017

Marsh Sandpiper at Cliffe Pools in Kent

An after work drive down to Cliffe Pools rewarded us with distant views of the visiting Marsh Sandpiper. We drove the track down to the mound in the wifes 4x4 and with the track being more pot hole than road we needed it. (Take the Pond Hill route if you're brave enough otherwise park in the Salt Lane car park and walk along the track to the second viewing mound after the Black Barn)

The views are distant but with good light and the scope max'd out you can make out some of the key features. The bird has spent some time on the closer pool which would make things a bit easier.
The RSPB have sensibly kept the two broods of Black-winged Stilts quiet until news of the Marsh Sandpiper broke and with them being on the same pool it was time to make things public but they are still keeping a close eye on the young birds to give them the best chance of making it.

Map of the reserve
A Barn Owl hunted the fields and the pools also held Ringed Plover, Dunlin, Avocets, Redshank etc.

And to finish off just one more from the recent Fox session.

Year list now 245
Life list now 384

Wednesday, 12 July 2017

More Fox action birds just a few more images of the local Foxes.

 my personal favourite
nearly too close!
shame he chose to sit in the shade.
causing havoc with the plant pots.
into the darkness
Now.....did somebody say Marsh Sandpiper at Cliffe Pools!!!

Monday, 10 July 2017