Tuesday, 22 January 2013

Thawing Out

First thing this morning at the ARC Pit. Walking out to the Willow Trail a Merlin sped low over the track flushing some of the many Redwing and fieldfares. In the Willow Trail dozens of Redwing, Blackbirds and Song Thrushes all seemingly alerting a single Woodcock to my presence, the Tit flock held a Chiffchaff and and 2 Goldcrests. As the lake was still largely frozen wildfowl numbers were low but 8 Goldeneye were notable. A walk up to The Pines  found 3 more Chiffchaffs, 2 Green Woodpeckers, a Great Spotted Woodpecker, 8 Common Snipe over and 2 Marsh Harriers.
A Mallydams bird by the fish shop
 At The Patch c1000 Black Headed Gulls, with lesser numbers of the big Gulls and a few Kittiwakes. Further out 100s of Guillemots and Razorbills and a few Red Throated Divers and Gannets.
This bird appears to cock its tail most of the time
 The 2 Snow Buntings performed a little better today inAdd caption the Varne Sailing Club car park  at Greatstone, on the sands there 100+ Oystercatchers, and few each of Bar Tailed Godwits, Curlews, Grey Plover, Knot, Sanderling and Dunlin.
 On the New Diggings 12 Smew(2 drakes) and 4 Goldeneye with the usual wildfowl. At the visitor centre a Goldcrest perched in the entrance for a few minutes and a 30+ Tree sparrows on the feeders at Boulderwall Farm.
Back at the ARC from Hanson  the wind had broken up most of the ice but still little of note to be seen  there, walking back along the track a Bittern jumped out of one of the small reed beds taking me by surprise.
At Scotney still good numbers of wildfowl, also a Merlin and a Peregrine also 3 Bean Geese seen by CP before I arrived.
On Walland in the late afternoon gloom 150+ Bewick Swans, The usual Tree Sparrows in the bushes opposite the feeding station, in Tickners Lane at the seed dump 5 Yellowhammers, 6 corn buntings and a Common Buzzard. 86 species today on the peninsular without really trying.

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