Sunday, 16 September 2012

Slim Pickings

At sea from The Point this morning a trickle of Gannets and Sandwich Terns moving west, c15 Common Scoter off shore and a small southward movement of Swallows and Sand Martins. Round the bushes very little of note a Few Chiffchaffs and a Great Spotted Woodpecker. At the ARC the Little Stint lingers on with 14 Dunlin, c50 Golden Plover, 2 Black-tailed Godwits, 6 Pintail still 2 Hobbys and a Peregrine.
A nice looking bird, pity about the poor light.

Bird of the day was the summer plumaged Red-throated Diver found on one of the Scotney Pools by DW doing a WEBs count and after waiting one and half hours it finally claim close enough to allow record shots. Other birds of note at Scotney were 7 Bar-tailed Godwits and a Black-tailed Godwit


Saturday, 15 September 2012

A Lazy Day

A late morning visit to the ARC from Hanson found 1 Little Stint, 14 Dunlin, c100 each of Golden Plover and Lapwing, 1 Snipe, 6 Pintail among the usual wildfowl, 1 Kingfisher, 2 Marsh Harriers, 1 Peregrine, 1 Hobby and 3+ Chiffchaffs round the hide.
A couple of hours lunchtime spent at the obs, chatting and watching a Spitfire and a Hurricane being filmed overhead. Also a couple of Sparrowhawks and a juvenile female Peregrine over. These  exertions  were followed by another couple of hours on the reserve in Firth Hide in the company of DW and GH waiting for the Pectoral Sandpiper to come close enough to photograph which it finally did when there was just the 3 of us left.

Friday, 14 September 2012

Pectoral Sandpiper

Sea Watching from The Point 06.50-10.20 TG,DW,MC.

Red-throated Diver: 1W my first of the autumn
Fulmar: 2E
Balearic Shearwater: 7W
Gannet: c200 around
Pintail: 1 in
Common Scoter: 15 o/s
Arctic Skua: 12W
Little Gull: 1W
Mediterranean Gull: 1W 
Sandwich Tern: c200W
Common Tern: c20W
Guillemot: 8W
Grey Plover: 2W
Knot: 2W
Swallow: 285 out
Sand Martin: 15 out
Harbour Porpoise: 6+ o/s
Pectoral Sandpiper
 On ARC from Hanson 2 Little Stints (ad+juv) 4 Dunlin, 3 Golden Plover (c200 appeared to go into Kerton Road Pit), 1 Hobby, c200 Sand Martins, 2 Marsh Harriers, 6 Little Egrets and 6 Pintail among the usual wildfowl.
 On the reserve the Pectoral Sandpiper was in front of Firth hide where a Ringed Plover and a Greenshank dropped in briefly also several 100s of Sand Martin and Swallow over Burrowes.  At Dengemarsh 2 Great White Egrets, 6 Little Egrets, 2 Marsh Harriers, a Hobby, 2 Yellow Wagtails and a Raven over.


Thursday, 13 September 2012

Gulls, Dragons and a Spitfire

The Patch was very quiet this morning with just 2 Common Terns and 2 Sandwich Terns with a few Gulls and a single Wheatear on the sea wall.
Great black Backed Gull
  The fishing boats were just as quiet with the Yellow-legged Gull in its usual place and a colour ringed GBB Gull among the other loafing gulls
Yellow;legged Gull
On the ARC from Hanson the adult Little Stint, 4 Dunlin, c60 Golden Plover, 8 Little Egrets, 2 Pintails and 26 Wigeon among the numerous Shoveler, Gadwall, Teal and Mallard.
  On the way back to the car park I finally managed a decent flight shot of a Migrant Hawker.
 A walk up to the pines found the sallows held 10+Chiffchaffs, 2 Willow Warblers, 4 Sedge Warblers, 2 Reed Warblers, 3 Cetti's Warblers, 1 Lesser Whitethroat, 3 Common Whitethroats, 1 Blackcap and large Tit flock of Great, Blue and Long Tailed Tits also seen there 2 Marsh Harriers, a Common Buzzard and a Hobby.
While I was at the pines a Spitfire spent a few minutes circling overhead.
By the track to the reserve centre near the gull roost a Whimbrel skulked. In Firth hide I met Mike Hook hoping to get shots of a very uncooperative Pectoral Sandpiper, and while we were  chatting  saw 1+Marsh Harrier, 2 Pintail fly by as did a distant Hobby. Round the rest of the reserve 2 Great White egrets, 6 Little Egrets, 2 Hobbys, 2 Sparrowhawks, 2 Marsh Harriers, 4 Ravens, 6 Cetti's Warblers, 5 Chiffchaffs, 1 Blackcap, 4 Common Whitethroats and 3 Dunlin.

14.00-1600 from the fishing boats;
5 Dark Bellied Brent Geese W
58 Wigeon (45,9,4) W
4 Arctic Skuas off shore
1 Guillemot W
And few each of Common and Sandwich Terns and gannets off shore
8+ Harbour Porpoises off shore.

Wednesday, 12 September 2012

Tuesday, 11 September 2012

Around The Marsh

Sea watching from The Point this morning was some what slow with 3+ Arctic Skuas off shore as was a single Little Gull small numbers of Common and Sandwich Terns, c100 Gannets a couple of Guillemots and 4+ Harbour Porpoises.
At the ARC the Great White Egret flew over New Diggings towards Dengemarsh and from Hanson the adult Little Stint still, 2 Common Sandpipers, c 200 Lapwing and 50+ Golden Plover along with the usual wildfowl.
On the reserve the Pectoral Sandpiper still on Burrowes best viewed from the centre, 20+ Yellow Wagtails and a Hobby at Dengemarsh and 3+ Marsh Harriers.
Dengemnarsh Gully held 3 Wheatears, a Stonechat, a Chiffchaff and a Great Spotted Woodpecker.

 At Scotney 150+ Golden Plover, 2 Black-tailed Godwit, 1 Bar-Tailed Godwit, 2 Bar-headed Geese, 2 Marsh Harriers, a Common Buzzard and 10+ Yellow Wagtails.
Across Walland the usual Tree Sparrow flocks, 2 Marsh Harriers and a Stoat while I was scanning the prairie like fields for Dotterel or Bustards.

Monday, 10 September 2012

Much The Same

At sea from The Point this morning the usual Gannets, Common and Sandwich Terns along with 2 Little Gulls, 3 Arctic Skuas, 4 Harbour Porpoises a trickle of Swallows, House and Sand Martins out and 2 Turnstones and a Yellow-legged Gull on the beach.
At the ARC a Little Stint, 2 Common Sandpipers, 3 Dunlin, c50 each of Golden Plover and Lapwing were the highlights. On the reserve the Pectoral Sandpiper still from |Firth hide and the Great White Egret at dengemarsh.
Another hours sea watch from the fishing boats this afternoon produced much the same as this morning probably the same birds.
At Scotney c200 Golden Plover, a Black-tailed Godwit, a Curlew and a Whimbrel.

Sunday, 9 September 2012

Monty's and a Pec.

A wander around the point and desert and moat this morning found just 8 Wheatears, 4 Common Whitethroats and a few Swallows over. Wondering where to go next a text from CT telling me the Montagu's Harrier was still at The Midrips solved my dilemma, especially as there is no more access until Friday 21/09/12. A few minutes later I was parking at Jurys Gap and plodding the c1000mts out to the third pool, where the Harrier was showing non stop for the couple of hours I was there catching Dragonflies and possibly Grasshoppers. At one point it was being harassed by 2 Hobby's ,but never came close for the camera and with the heat haze any image was difficult. Also seen a Merlin which flew through 20+ Yellow Wagtails, a few Wheatears and some Swallows and Sand Martins moved through. There was a distinct lack of waders despite the pools looking brilliant, just 3 Curlews, 2 Ringed Plovers and a Dunlin were seen (TG) and c200 Sandwich Terns roosting on the beach.

Hazy Monty's
 As we got back to the cars a text from SB alerted us that the Pectoral Sandpiper was back in front of Firth hide. A few minutes later we were watching it until a Little Egret flushed it and flew out of sight behind vegetation. From Hanson 200+ each of Golden Plover and Lapwing, 1 Black-tailed Godwit, a Little Stint, a Curlew Sandpiper, a Common Sandpiper, 5+ Dunlin, 3 flyover Whimbrel and a Black-necked Grebe.
Pectoral Sandpiper

Saturday, 8 September 2012

Red-backed Shrike

A late morning visit to the ARC pit from Hanson found very little of note 100+Golden Plover, 1 Pintail, 1 Black-tailed Godwit, 5 Dunlin, 2 Common Sandpipers, 2+ Marsh Harriers and few Phylloscs in the bushes. A plod up to the pines with TG and PB was unrewarding apart from a flock of 6 probable migrant Herons.
An early afternoon visit to The Midrips was very disappointing with c200 Sandwich Terns roosting on the beach and only 5 Dunlin and 1 Ringed Plover on the pools being watched over by a Common Buzzard. While there I received news of  a Red-backed Shrike in The Desert. On my arrival it  was quite elusive and flighty, certainly not allowing close approach. While watching the Shrike news of a Pectoral Sandpiper on Burrowes was received, but it had disappeared by the time I arrived on site. 


A Dowitcher and a Monarch (Friday 7/09/12)

With Dungeness being so very quiet an offer of a trip to Dorset to see a Short-billed Dowitcher was very appealing. Sometime around 13.00 GH,DW,DB and myself found ourselves at Lodmoor staring way into the distance through a terrible heat haze at 2 clumps of reeds, waiting for a brown smudge to walk between them. The smudge duly did this on several occasions. After a couple of hours and with news of Monarch Butterfly at Weston, we decided to go on to Portland and admire this beauty (which must have struggled gazillions of miles over land and sea?) for our viewing delight.
After viewing this beauty and stopping for GH to have her photo taken with a golden post box, we made our way back to Lodmoor. Where we once again looked at a brown smudge occasionally appearing between 2 clumps of reeds though the heat haze had lessened considerably. About 19.00 as we were preparing to leave, the brown smudge suddenly appeared much closer to us. After viewing the bird for a few minutes confirming its identity, we made the decision to dash about half a mile so that we could get 50 yds closer. This was successful and allowed me to get some record pictures of it just before the sun went down. Another great day out in good company and many thanks to GH for driving.