Friday, 29 June 2012

Sheltering in the Woods

As the wind was once again howling this morning I went to Orlestone forest to find vsome shelter and hopefully see some birds and plants.
Round the car park lots of young Great Tits mainly and a family of Great Spotted Woodpeckers. Along the rides Blackcaps, Garden Warblers and Chiffchaffs still singing, plus some young calling, also a Turtle Dove purring. Further along the tracks by an old bomb crater c30 Crossbills flew in also a Treecreeper and a Nuthatch. Further on I came across an old Green Woodpecker nest taken over by Bee's. Even further into the forest I came across a beautiful meadow full of Common Spotted Orchids and many other plants as yet unidentified, also there a Nightingale calling, another Turtle Dove purring and more Blackcaps and Garden warblers. 
Part of a flock of c30 Crossbills

The Bee's have taken over and old Woodpecker nest

Thursday, 28 June 2012

Now you see it?

 At The Patch this morning the 1st summer Little Gull still and 3 Meditteranean Gulls were the pick of the gulls there and just a single Sandwich Tern.
At the Observatory the old Heligoland Trap has been dismantled, the wire put in a skip and  the old timber burnt. Hopefully this weekend a new one will be erected by a group of willing volunteers.
A couple of hours at the fishing boats this afternoon enjoying the glorious weather saw 4 Meditterranean Gulls, c20 Gannets, c15 Sandwich Terns, c10 Common Terns, 5 Common Scoter, 3+ Harbour Porpoises and a Seal.
Add caption

Tuesday, 26 June 2012

Rye Harbour

Spent the day at Rye Harbour enjoying the summery weather and a few birds and wild flowers. Several pairs of Avocets with a few young, Also Dunlin, Ringed Plovers, Oystercatchers, Redshanks and a Turnstone.
On the Ternery Pool plenty of young Black-headed gulls, but very few Meditteranean Gulls, what looks like good numbers of Common Terns and Sandwich Terns. Also seen on the reserve 2 Wheatears and at least 8 Little Terns but not sure if they are breeding, good numbers of Skylarks singing, plus Reed, Sedge and Cetti's Warblers, Common and Lesser Whitethroats and Linnets.

Monday, 25 June 2012

Still waiting for Summer

At The Patch bathed in sunshine this morning the 1st summer Little Gull still present along with 8 Meditteranean Gulls, c50 Common Terns, 1 Portlandica Type Tern and the usual Gulls. Off shore c300 Gannets per DW and several Harbour Porpoises.
At the south end of the ARC Pit the usual mix of ducks, 3 Ringed Plovers including 1 juvenile and a Hobby.
At the Water Tower a family party of 6 Lesser Whitethroats, 2 Hobby's, 2 Marsh Harriers, 1 Cuckoo, 2 Green Woodpeckers and a Great Spotted Woodpecker.
Lesser Whitethroat
 A very pleasant plod, in now cooler cloudier conditions, from Boulderwall farm to springfield bridge and back found 4+ Hobby's, 3+Marsh Harriers, 2 Cuckoo's, 1 Green Sandpiper, a flock of 19 Black-tailed Godwits flew over, a flight view of a Bittern and the usual Common Whitethroats, Reed, Sedge and Cetti's Warblers, along with many Reed buntings. At Dengemarsh on the Common Tern rafts at least 2 abandonded clutches but still at least 18 sitting birds.

Common Terns (Note the abandoned clutch of 3eggs)

Sunday, 24 June 2012


After a lay in waiting for the rain to ease a 2 hour watch (11.15-13.15 ) from The Point found a few Common and Sandwich Terns fishing, a steady stream of Gannets moving west and 12 Manx Shearwaters also west. In a quick look at The Patch where it was difficult to stand let alone keep the bins steady, c 50 Common Terns there and 100+ Gannets further out that must have found a large shoal of fish. 
 At the south end of the ARC Pit 130+ Pochard, 20+Tufted Duck, 8 Teal, 26 Gadwall, 1 Little Egret and a Hobby.
Round the Tower Pits 2+Marsh Harriers, 2+Hobby's, c50 Swifts and Reed, Sedge, Cetti's Warblers and Common Whitethroats still singing.
Between Boulderwall and Dengemarsh, much the same as the Tower Pits with the addition of several Tree Sparrows, and Common Terns 

Saturday, 23 June 2012

Frog Orchids

I spent today in Sussex and stopped off on my home to look at some Frog Orchids.
Frog Orchid

Frog Orchid

Common Spotted Orchid

Friday, 22 June 2012

More Gales

A couple of hours watching from The Point this morning returned 1 Arctic Skua, 3 Fulmars, 3 Common Scoter and a few Gannets, Common and Sandwich Terns tooing and froing, also c50 Swifts. By the power station 2 Black Redstarts and masses of Vipers Bugloss.
Vipers Bugloss

At the south end of the ARC Pit my first returning Green Sandpiper of the year, 1 Little Egret and 6 Ringed Plovers. Most of the Pochard have relocated to the sheltered waters in front of Hanson Hide, where 100+ Swifts, 100+ House Martins and a few Swallows and Sand Martins were feeding. Also there 1 Hobby and 1 Marsh harrier.
Green Sandpiper

Thursday, 21 June 2012

Mid Summer Day

At The Patch this morning the 1st summer Little Gull still present along with c50 Common Terns, c10 Sandwich Terns, 14 Common Scoter flew east  as did 6 Swallows and 3 Black Redstarts inside the power station compound.
1st Summer Little Gull

1st Summer Little Gull and Sandwich Tern
 Moving on from The Patch down to Dengemarsh Gully a family of Ringed Plovers, c20 Linnets, 2 Pied Wagtails, 6 Wheatears and 2 Peregrines.

Ringed Plover with bling

Common Lizard
 At the south end of ARC Pit c130 Pochard, 2 Little Egrets, 3 Ringed Plovers, 1 Little Ringed Plover and 1 Hobby.
Round the boardwalk 12 Common Lizards, 1 Grass Snake and 1 Green Woodpecker. On the track from the car park to Hanson Hide several Reed, Sedge and Cetti's Warblers still singing and a Marsh Harrier over. At Cockles Bridge an Oystercatcher finding something good to eat inside a rotten fence post.

Tuesday, 19 June 2012

Botany Master Class

I had a brilliant morning out with BB furthering my botanical education.
Monkey Orchids

Monkey Orchid

Fragrant Orchids

Musk Orchids

White Fragrant Orchid

Common Twayblade

Bird's-nest Orchid

Lady Orchid
 This afternoon I spent a couple of hours on the beach at the fishing boats, enjoying the sun and playing guess where the Porpoise will surface next.
Harbour Porpoise

Monday, 18 June 2012

Here Comes The Sun

A plod down to The Patch this morning found c40 Common Terns, 6 Sandwich Terns and the 1st summer Little Gull also 2 Black Redstarts behind the sea wall. A half hearted watch from by the seawatch hide with DW and PT found 6 Curlew W and c40 Gannets W and at least 7 Harbour Porpoises off shore. 
Common Tern
 At the fishing boats c20 Common Terns and c10 Sandwich Terns feeding close inshore allowing a few pictures. Whilst I was there A Hummingbird Hawk Moth came in off the sea and landed briefly on the shingle, 9 Common Scoter flew east and a Turnstone land on the beach.
Hummingbird Hawk Moth

Ruddy Turnstone

Sunday, 17 June 2012

Mid Summer

At The Point this morning due to the fisherman, the Tern roost was pushed right along the beach to switching station. After plodding out there to check the roost I could not find any Roseate Terns, the best was a 1st summer Little Gull. I spent an hour by the roost watching the coming and goings of the Terns but still no Roseates. Another hour from the sea watch hide was unproductive with a few Gannets and Common Terns tooing and froing, 6 Common Scoter W and 2 Kittiwakes W.
At the ARC Pit Pochard numbers are building up, 50+Swifts hawking, 3+ Hobby's and tame Fox Cub behind the Screen hide were the only things of note.  

Saturday, 16 June 2012

Another Botanical Lesson

A brilliant day with GH and DW having a botanical lesson.
Late Spider Orchid

Late Spider Orchid

Man Orchid

Man Orchid

Lesser Butterfly Orchid

Lesser Butterfly Orchid

Fragrant Orchid with Late Spider Orchid

Heath Spotted Orchid

Heath Spotted Orchid

Friday, 15 June 2012

Another Rosy Day

 Arriving at The Point car park this morning I met Matt who had already been to The Patch and told me that there was a Roseate Tern there. Arriving at The Patch I quickly located it on the beach with c40 Common Terns and c10 Sandwich Terns and a few Gulls. I crawled to the edge of the sea wall so as not to flush everything and started photographing it. After about half an hour a second bird flew in to give more photographic opportunities. Later I made my way to the fishing boats and spent an hour sea watching. Little of note seen but 12 Swallows flew south. Then went back to The Patch where 1 Roseate was still on the beach as was a 1st Summer Little Gull also 2 Manx Shearwaters flew east and 7 Common Scoter. The Tern flew out to sea and was lost but later while watching from the sea watch hide I relocated the 2 Roseates feeding around the buoy

1st summer Little Gull with my first juv Black Headed gull at The Patch this year