Wednesday, 15 July 2015

Quiet times!

This morning very few Gulls at The Patch as several anglers were fishing there. In a small roost near The Patch 3 juvenile and an adult Mediterranean Gull.
 1 of 3 juvenile Mediterranean Gulls near The Patch today
Sea watching today 10.30-11.30 & 13.30-15.00:
Common Scoter: 52E  16W
Great-crested Grebe: 6 o/s
Gannet: c250 feeding o/s  &  51W
Cormorant: 9 o/s
Oystercatcher: 1W
Turnstone: 1 on beach (my first returning bird)
Whimbrel: 2W
Mediterranean Gull: 3W    2 x ad + 1st summer
Kittiwake: 1W
Sandwich Tern: 130W
Common Tern: 14W
Guillemot: 1E
Sand Martin: 101 out
Harbour Porpoise: 3+
Grey Seal: 1
Hopefully passerine migration will start soon and give me a reason to look in the bushes.

 2 Whimbrel head west past the fishing boats this afternoon
3 Poplar Grey from this mornings catch
Just for Steve Gale!

Tuesday, 14 July 2015

More sea watching but no Albatross!

10.00-11.00 & 13.30-16.30 from the fishing boats:
Common Scoter: 14E
Great-crested Grebe: 5 o/s
Fulmar: 1W
Gannet: 21E   242W
Cormorant: 20E   16W
Common Gull: 1 juvenile W
Yellow-legged Gull: 2 on beach
Kittiwake: 3W all adults
Sandwich Tern: 6E  100W
Common Tern: 14W
Auk sp: 3E
Swift: 12 out
Sand Martin: 52 out in a single party
Swallow: 1
Skylark: 1 singing behind beach
Harbour Porpoise: 4

A very confiding Juvenile Yellow-legged Gull

Aglossa pinguinalis (Large Tabby) was new for me.
Last nights moth hall was the best so far for me with 58 macros and 17 micros

Monday, 13 July 2015

Mainly Sea watching!

After emptying the moth trap this morning I drove the short distance to the point for a sea watch from the comfort of the car.
08.40-10.00 from The Point:
Common Scoter: 9E
Great-crested Grebe: 5 o/s
Manx Shearwater: 1W
Gannet: 7E   96W
Cormorant: 8W
Ringed Plover: 2 on beach
Dunlin: 5 in all adults.
Mediterranean Gull: 1E  adult
Kittiwake: 2W adults
Yellow-legged Gull: 1 juvenile on beach
Sandwich Tern: 24W
Common Tern: 14W
Auk sp: 1W
Swift: 63 south
Harbour Porpoise: 1
Gannets passing The point this afternoon.
13.55-16.00  with M.H.
Teal: 7W
Great-crested Grebe: 7 o/s
Manx Shearwater: 2W
Gannet: 21E   119W
Cormorant: 10E  2W   4 o/s
Oystercatcher: 1E
Mediterranean Gull: 2W adults
Yellow-legged Gull: 2 juveniles 1 on beach  1E
Kittiwake: 1W adult
Sandwich Tern: 2E  22W
Common Tern: 1W
Swifts: 141 (including a party of 112)
Harbour Porpoise: 4+ o/s
Grey Seal: 1 o/s
Driving back across the causeway c150 Swifts, c150 Sand Martins, c100 House Martins and a few Swallows over the ARC in the mizzle.  
The first Small Ranunculus of the year in the trap this A.M.
36 macro sp and 12 micro in the trap identified so far today, including another 2 Small Mottled Willows, 4 xylostella, Pine Hawkmoth and 8 Elephant Hawkmoths, 6 Silver Ys, a Grey/Dark Dagger and first 3 Small Ranunclus and first Dun-bar of the year were the pick of the bunch today.

Sunday, 12 July 2015


Saturday morning at the Scotney complex of note, the 2 Spoonbills asleep, 2 Little Owls around the barns, a Green and Common Sandpiper and the usual Yellow Wagtails, Corn Buntings and Tree Sparrows.
In the evening on the ARC of note a Spotted Redshank, a Greenshank, 4 Little Ringed Plovers, 5 Dunlin and 2 Ringed Plovers.
Distant pic of the Spotted Redshank and Greenshank.
An hour this morning from The Point 09.15-10.15:

Common Scoter: 5E
Great-crested Grebe: 5 o/s
Gannet: 64W     4E
Cormorant: 4 o/s   7W
Sandwich Tern: 27W most carrying fish
Common Tern: 7 o/s  party of 8W
Auk sp: 1E
Swift: 4 south
House Martin: 1 south
Harbour Porpoise: 2 

On the turf at Scotney of note 31 Curlew, a Whimbrel, 6 Ringed Plover , 3 Egyptian Geese and 2 Barnacle Geese, among the hordes of Greylag and Canada Geese.
This evening at the ARC 4 Little Ringed Plovers, a Garganey and a mixed flock of c100 House and Sand Martins.
While putting the moth trap out this evening I watched amazed as a Hobby took a Sand Martin as easily as they take Dragonflys.

Friday, 10 July 2015

A lazy day!

 At Scotney this morning the 2 Spoonbills were on the back lake in their usual pose, it seems as though there maybe 1 pair of Avocets left and 1 pair of Common Terns on the islands, a Common Sandpiper was there along with 13 Black-tailed Godwits, a Little Ringed plover and a Ringed Plover, along with 100s of Greylag Geese several Little Egrets, the usual Yellow Wagtails, Corn Buntings and Tree Sparrows and 3 Little Owls. On the main lake another Common Sandpiper per DG and 2 Egyptian Geese along with 100s more Greylags.
 One of 3 Little Owls showing at Scotney today.
At The Patch 5+ Mediterranean Gulls and 6+ Juvenile Yellow-legged Gulls among the 100s of Herring and Black-headed Gulls, a Black Redstart was feeding along the perimeter wall and a Hummingbird Hawkmoth.
At the ARC 3 Little Ringed Plovers and a  Ringed Plover among c150 Lapwings, also a party of 5 Redshanks at the south end.
I spent the afternoon sky watching from Plodland with a supply of cold drinks whilst listening to the cricket, 3 Little Egrets, a Hobby, a Marsh Harrier, Common Buzzard, 2 Kestrels, a Sparrowhawk and a pair of noisy Oystercatchers all flew over the garden, a brilliant way to spend a hot summers afternoon. 
6 of the 9 Elephant hawkmoths in the Plodland trap this morning
Bird's wing from this mornings catch.

Thursday, 9 July 2015

A Butterfly and some moths!

From the screen first thing this morning 6 Black-tailed Godwits (19 in the afternoon visit) 4 Little ringed Plovers and 2 Ringed Plovers among c100 Lapwings. The Swallows were sitting tight on there second clutch, 2 Marsh Harriers hunted the reed bed in front the hide and a Hobby was hawking behind the hide.
At The Patch 8 Mediterranean Gulls, 6 juvenile Yellow-legged Gulls among c200 Black-headed Gulls and c150 Herring Gulls including a North Thames colour ring MX3T, also 2 Great Crested grebes off shore and a handful of Gannets feeding distantly. On the perimeter wall a single Hummingbird Hawkmoth. 
 Mediterranean Gulls
 Juvenile Common Whitethroat
While I was at the observatory a neighbour brought in a juvenile Common Whitethroat that a local cat had caught, it seemed none the worse for it's experience but they had kept it overnight in a box, I placed it back in the bushes and hopefully its parents will hear it.
 Small Copper(radiata)
Also while I at the obs. a rare form of Small Copper (radiata) was found in the moat by a visiting Small Copper expert, apparently this was only the second he had seen.
 Brown Hawker at the ARC
The Plodland moth trap was fairly bulging last night, with an impressive for me 47 macro species, including a Balsam Carpet and my 10th Small Mottled Willow of the year, also at least 18 micro species including 96 Endotrichia flammealis and a gorgeous Cynaeda dentalis
 Balsam Carpet Scarce on the peninsular
Cynaeda dentalis a gorgeous micro moth.

Tuesday, 7 July 2015

2 Roseates!

From the screen hide at the ARC pit this morning, 2 Little Ringed Plovers among the dozens of Lapwings, a Cuckoo flew over as did a Marsh Harrier, the Swallows sitting tight on there second brood.
At The Patch 5 each of Mediterranean Gulls and juvenile Yellow-legged Gulls, with c10 Common Terns over the boil but little else of interest.
This evening from the fishing boats 18.00-19.00:
Great-crested Grebe: 1 o/s
Gannet: 74E    32W
Yellow-legged Gull: 1 juv on beach 2 juvs in the roost
Kittiwake: 1W
Sandwich Tern: c15 o/s
Common Tern: c10 o/s
Swift: 24 south
Grey Seal: 1
 Juv.Yellow-legged Gull, 1of 2 in the roost this evening
Udea ferrugalis in the Plodland trap this morning along with another Small Mottled Willow and 6 Plutella xylostella were the only immigrants.

Thanks to DW for realising from his pictures that there were definitely 2 Roseate Terns at the fishing boats Sunday afternoon, 1 ringed and 1 unringed.
 Ring clearly visible on this Roseate Tern
Clearly no rings on this Roseate Tern

Monday, 6 July 2015

Sitting in the Sun!

A poor video of yesterdays Roseate Tern

After emptying the moth trap this morning I drove to the fishing boats making a short stop at Cockles Bridge, where a Marsh Harrier and Common Buzzard were hunting, 2 Yellow Wagtails were in the Paddock with 2 Stock Doves until a male Sparrowhawk shot across the paddock narrowly missing one of the Yellow Wagtails.
At the fishing boats just a handful of Common and Sandwich Terns were feeding along with a single 2s Mediterranean Gull and a bull Grey Seal.
At The Patch 7+ juv.Yellow-legged Gulls, 7 Mediterranean Gulls including a juvenile and a few Common Terns.  
 Little Owl, Scotney
At Scotney the 2 Spoonbills still showing distantly where as 2 Little Owls showed very well. The usual Yellow Wagtails, Corn buntings and Tree Sparrows were seen, but it seems that all of 15 Avocet nests have now been predated probably by a Badger.
2hrs sitting on the beach at the fishing boats this afternoon in the glorious sunshine, (retirement is tough) saw the Roseate Tern again briefly as it sped by heading westwards, a few Sandwich Terns headed west carrying fish for presumably youngster at Rye Harbour, which seems a long way to go to catch a meal, whats happened to the Rye Bay fish stocks? Also past the boats 5 Mediterranean gulls including a juvenile and 3 juvenile Yellow-legged Gulls.
Below some of the moths that are scarce on the peninsular found in the Plodland trap in last few days.
 Scarce Silver-lines
 Small Mottled Willow (8 so far)
 Maple Prominent

Sunday, 5 July 2015

Roseate Tern!

Last nights moth catch was the best so far this year with 53 species of macro and at least 25 micro species although none were of real note. With the welcome rain this morning it gave me the opportunity to photograph the micro's and identify most of them.
Late morning the rain cleared and I made my way to the ARC where from the screen 2 Little Ringed Plovers could be seen among the many post breeding Lapwings and the hordes of Mute swans and Coots. At the south end 2 Black-tailed Godwits and c20 Sand Martins.
Next stop the fishing boats for a sea watch, from the moment I arrived there was a mixed party of c20 Sandwich and Common Terns feeding close inshore on Whitebait. I started trying to get some images of the terns when an adult Roseate Tern appeared in front of me a little further out than the rest of the terns, another panic moment ensued as I fired off some record shots as it moved off west, then made a call and tweet. Fortunately the Roseate Tern came back and showed well to those who came to it.

 Roseate Tern at the fishing boats this afternoon

The first juvenile Yellow-legged Gull of the year was attracted by the offal put out by my Mick and the 2 Richards.
a 1st summer Common Tern at the fishing boats
Mystery Tern!
Sanwich Tern surfaces
With Whitebait 

Wednesday, 1 July 2015

Pesky Cats!

Early this morning I went outside to empty the Moth trap only to find it had been trashed, presumably by a cat chasing moths, even so it still contained 52 macro's of 25 species including another Small Mottled Willow.
 Eyed Hawkmoth, 2 Poplar Hawkmoths, Small Elephant Hawkmoth and very tatty Elephant Hawkmoth
Grey/Dark Dagger
A very pleasant hours sea watch 08.00-09.00 from The Point:

Shelduck: 19E (single flock presumably Heligoland bound)
Common Scoter: 16E
Great-crested Grebe: 4 on sea
Gannet: 15E  131W
Cormorant: 5 on sea
Oystercatcher: 1E
Mediterranean Gull: 7+ o/s
Sandwich Tern: c35 feeding o/s
Common Tern: c15 feeding o/s
Harbour Porpoise: 1
Grey Seal: 1
I then had a wander around The desert seeing very little of note as the temperature started to soar.
A chat with BB and DW and then off to the ARC where 2 Hobby's were hawking high over the car park. At Boulderwall several Tree sparrows were around the feeders, either side of the the track to the viewing ramp is a blue haze of Viper's bugloss, Hobby's were hunting either side and 3 Marsh harriers quartered the fields. From the ramp a Bittern put in a brief flyby appearance, while Reed, Sedge and Cetti's Warblers are still singing and family of Bearded tits put in appearance. By the time I got back to the car the temperatures were in the high 20s, so back home for a late breakfast and afternoon chilling.
The Viper's-bugloss on the peninsular is particularly stunning this year