Saturday, 21 May 2022


One of many patches of Broome on the shingle
A long walk this morning out to and around the Open Pits where the Broome was dazzlingly spectacular. Avian wise a few Reed, Sedge and Cetti's Warblers were singing, Reed Buntings were plentiful, the highlight for me was a singing Willow Warbler that must have been new arrival. The noisy young Cormorants are growing fast with constantly being fed regurgitated fish. Hairy Dragonfly and Four-spotted Chasers were in good numbers there as were the Marsh Frogs. On the reserve the usual Marsh Harriers, Bearded Tits, Bitterns and Hobby's, also a Cattle Egret was seen on Tanners Pool. Burrowes held a couple of Curlew and very little else. A report that the Ring-necked Duck had reappeared on the ARC, on making my way to Hanson Hide the first bird I saw there was the Ring-necked Duck which was still present at 20.00 this evening.
Cormorant Colony

Hairy Dragonfly
Four Spotted Chaser
Marsh Frog
Ring-necked Duck from Hanson Hide

Ring-necked Duck from Hanson Hide

Brown Silver-line a first for the Plodland MV last night

Thursday, 19 May 2022


Yellow Wagtail at the hay fields
Spring migration seems to be just about done at Dungeness. In todays rain in the past I would have expected the lakes to to be carpeted in Swifts, Swallows, Martins and Black Terns with the odd scarcity among them, today not a single one of those 4 species was seen, indeed only a maximum of 5 Common Terns were noted around the reserve, the only wader of note was a Wood Sandpiper the hay fields, all of yesterdays Black and Bar-tailed Godwits, Curlew, Whimbrel and Spotted Redshank had departed. 
At Hookers viewing ramp Bitterns were busy towing and froing feeding young, Bearded Tits were much in evidence, Hobby's appeared when the sun came out. A kingfisher was seen there and from Dennis's taking fish to the nest, even Reed and Sedge Warblers seem to be in low numbers this spring.
Spotted Redshank at the Hayfields
Common Gulls from Dennis's Hide in todays rain
Peregrine on the power station this afternoon
Oak Hook-tip 

Tuesday, 17 May 2022


A very nice Purple Heron flyby this morning

One of the Bitterns was quite showy flying to and from its nest at Dengemarsh

Several Bearded Tits were seen from the Dengemarsh viewing ramp today 
Spotted Redshank on the hay fields today

A Southern Marsh Orchid just coming out at the ARC
It's unusual for this many (29) Black-tailed Godwits to be seen on Burrowes
Common Tern from Hanson
Common Tern Displaying from Hanson
This Fox has been around The Point for some time, looks as if it has cataracts.

Sunday, 15 May 2022


One of several Spotted Flycatchers around the peninsular yesterday

An early start to the sea watch this morning, full of optimism in anticipation of flocks of Skuas and Terns very quickly replaced with reality.
05.00-09.05 & 13.35-14.35

Shoveler: 8E (2 +4 + 2) 5 drakes
Garganey: 2E pair at 06.13
Common Scoter: 86E     3W
Great-crested Grebe: 9 on
Fulmar: 6E
Gannet: 80E 12W
Cormorant: present n/c
Oystercatcher: 7E
Grey Plover: 2E
Bar-tailed Godwit: 2E
Knot: 8E
Dunlin: 1E
Sanderling: 34E
Kittiwake: 12E
Black-headed Gull: present n/c
Mediterranean Gull: 2E        1 present 1st summer
Common Gull: present n/c
Great Black-backed Gull: present n/c
Herring Gull: present n/c
Lesser Black-backed Gull: 4 on beach
Sandwich Tern: 17E
Common Tern: 5E
Arctic Skua: 1E
Auk sp: 2E 3W
Peregrine: 1 in
Swallow: 5 in
Harbour Porpoise: 3
Grey Seal: 1
Common Sandpiper on ARC from Hanson
Also at the ARC 2 Whimbrel and the usual Hobby's and Marsh Harriers. On Burrowes 3 Greenshanks, a Grey Plover and a Sanderling of note. A Spotted Redshank on the hay fields this morning. At Springfield Bridge around 17.30 RW found a Purple Heron, when I arrived at the viewing ramp a few minutes later it had disappeared into the reed beds and not seen again in the next hour. Though around 19.15 Fiona saw it and again twice more by dusk. So an early visit tomorrow.
Bittern from the ramp late afternoon while waiting for the Purple Heron NOT to show

The same Bittern at the top Of Cooks Pool viewed from the entrance track

Friday, 13 May 2022


The watch started well with a party of 3 Arctic Skuas passing as soon as I arrived, but that was as good as it got.
Common Scoter: 3E
Great-crested Grebe: 2 on
Gannet: 23W
Cormorant: present n/c
Black-headed Gull: present n/c
Mediterranean Gull: 1 present
Common Gull: present n/c
Great Black-backed Gull: present n/c
Herring Gull: present n/c
Sandwich Tern: 2E
Commic: 27E
Arctic Skua: 3E (single party on the first sweep of the scope)
Auk sp: 21E 
Swift: 9 in
Swallow: 18 in
Harbour Porpoise: 2
One of several Grizzled Skippers seen around the trapping area
Around the trapping area most birds were heard rather than seen, though my first Garden Warbler of the year was nice to hear and eventually see, also 2+ Spotted Flycatchers, a single Willow Warbler, Chiffchaff, Common and Lesser Whitethroat, Blackcaps and a Sparrowhawk with a trickle of Swallows over.
Male Sparrowhawk over the trapping area
Avocet in front of Hanson
At Hanson Hide resting on the small island a single Avocet that was flushed by a Sparrowhawk giving nice flight views before settling back down to sleep, also Marsh Harrier and small numbers of the resident wildfowl.
A visit to Old Romney failed to find the 2 Dotterel seen there earlier.
A couple of visits to Dennis's saw just 6 Dunlin of any note, another visit to Firth viewpoint was hopeless, even with the shelter, the wind just howled through the slats rendering using a scope virtually impossible, the only benefit is that you nearly always have it to your self, as all the public who said they'd prefer viewpoints don't seem to visit the reserve anymore.
A look around a very windswept hay fields found very little, though most probably anything there was sheltering in the thicker vegetation. There was a Cattle Egret at Cooks Pool today, 

Thursday, 12 May 2022


A very sparse sea watch this morning:
Common Scoter: 2W
Great-crested Grebe: 2 on
Gannet: 7E 19W
Cormorant: present n/c
Sanderling: 10W
Kittiwake: 9W
Black-headed Gull: present n/c
Mediterranean Gull: 1E
Common Gull: present n/c
Great Black-backed Gull: present n/c
Herring Gull: present n/c
Sandwich Tern: 1W
Commic: 15E
Auk sp: 3E 1W
Swift: 7 in
Harbour Porpoise: 2
Grey Seal: 1
Oystercatchers in the Common Gull box at Dennis's hide this morning
3 Visits to Dennis's today, Kingfisher seen on 2 occasions, up to 12 Dunlin, 6 Ringed Plover and 8 Sanderling, just a handful of Swallows over the lake but still no Terns. I did visit the Firth and Makepiece viewpoint, strangely I had them all to myself, probably something to do with the wind howling through them.

Marsh Harrier adding to its nest at the ARC today
At the ARC apart from Marsh Harriers, squealing Water Rails and another Kingfisher, I saw little of note
and once again no Terns.
The local Common Buzzard over the garden while I was having a coffee break
Yellow Wagtail
A long walk around Scotney toady found just 8 Yellow Wagtails, hopefully more to arrive, 24 Avocets, 2 Little Ringed Plovers, 56 Dunlin, 4 Redshank, a few Corn Buntings, lots of Skylarks, 4 Tree Sparrows, a few Common Buzzards and Little Egrets, along withe usual feral Geese and their offspring. The strong WSW wind was probably to blame for the paucity of birds.
female Yellow Wagtail at Scotney
A smart male Linnet at Scotney
A Maple Prominent in the Plodland trap this morning, a scarce moth down here

Tuesday, 10 May 2022


The last 2 Pomarine Skuas of the day passing in the fading evening light yesterday at 20.08
Yesterday was the big Pomarine Skua day of the year with a very nice 86 birds seen passing The Point. I believe that 157 Poms have passed The Point this spring, I have managed to see a respectable 147 of them. The sea watching this spring has been on the whole good with hopefully more good days to come, though it will be nice to have time to go out and look for the many woodland and farmland species I have not seen this year due to spending far to much time staring at the sea.
Female Whinchat at Dengemarsh today my first of the year
After this mornings sea watch which saw another single Pomarine Skua, also an arrival of Swifts and Swallows, it was good to have a wander around Dengemarsh this afternoon despite the strong wind and cloudy conditions, seeing my first Whinchat, lots of Swallows and Swifts, 3 Greenshank, Garganey. Hobby's, Bittern, Great White egrets and Marsh Harriers along with the usual Warblers.
Swallows and swifts arrive in good numbers today
Yellow Wagtail at Dengemarsh, still only a few around
One of 3 Greenshanks around the hay fields today
Green Veined White