Wednesday, 23 September 2015

The Day After!

With clear skies, the short drive to The Point this morning was made with the forlorn hope that the Flycatcher would still be present. The approach road was lined with cars and there was a wall of birders staring into Dave Bunney's garden. Their demeanour told me instantly that the bird had not been seen nor probably would. I was disappointed for them, but especially for Mark who was due back from a Spanish sea watching trip this afternoon. Mark a Dungeness stalwart of many years, who when I moved to Kent 6 years ago made me feel welcome at Dungeness. In those years we have shared many good birds and laughs (Buff-breasted Sandpiper morphing into a Ruff at Scotney and then 2 Buff Breasts appear) to have been able to share the Flycatcher with him would have been the icing on the cake. I dare say tomorrow he will regale me with tales of legions of Pomarine and long-tailed Skuas, with waves of various Shearwaters and probably a few jokes. Mind you if he mentions some of the older Dungeness mega's!!!!!!!
When I reached the observatory I met AJG and walked a lap of The desert with him. It became obvious that there had been an overnight clear out of migrants, with just 4 Common Whitethroats, 4 Blackcaps, 2 Wheatears, a Stonechat, 5 Robins also a few Hirundines, Siskins, Reed Buntings and Meadow Pipits over.
Back at the observatory news of a Pallid Harrier and Red-footed Falcon at Worth Marshes came through. AJG who had not seen a Red-footed Falcon for some time suggested we go there, I was more than willing to accompany him there. An hour later we watching a superb juvenile Red-footed Falcon hawking Dragonfly's, amazingly we had the bird to our selves. We didn't see the Pallid Harrier , that would have been greedy.
Back at Dungeness a short sea watch this afternoon saw the usual 6+ Arctic Skua's beating up the Sandwich Terns, a Bonxie west and 3 Kittiwakes west.
Just realised that the Flycatcher is my 201st species for Dungeness this year, not a bad local patch!
juvenile Red-footed Falcon
Juvenile Red-footed Falcon
Juvenile Red-footed Falcon

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