Sunday, 5 July 2020

Sunday 05/07/2020

07.30-08.00 from the fishing boats courtesy of AJG, RW & CP
Common Scoter: 5E
Fulmar: 5W
Manx Shearwater: 7W
Gannet: 31W
Cormorant: present n/c
Mediterranean Gull: 2 around
Common Tern: 8W
Guillemot: 1W
Swift: 3S
The paucity of Terns and Cormorants off shore presumably means that there is still not much in the way of small fish in the bay.
1 of 2 juvenile Wheatears by the fishing boats today
11.50-12.50 from the fishing boats:
Common Scoter: 12E
Manx Shearwater: 2W
Gannet: 11W  3E
Cormorant: 3 o/s
Kittiwake: 2W
Common Tern: 5W
Grey Seal: 1
Harbour Porpoise: 2
In my 2 visits to the ARC today I did not see the Black-winged Stilt, but I was assured that it was still present, I'm guessing it was roosting among the Purple Loosestrife. 2 Dunlin were present and 4 juvenile Black-headed Gulls, also again high numbers of Swifts with a few Sand and House Martins. Once again the wind made it impossible to try and count the Common Tern nests and chicks.
One of the many Swifts foraging over the lakes
This afternoon a long walk around Lydd, through the cricket pitch out to Brett's batching plant and back past the lakes was pleasant enough with Sally for company, bird wise we saw little with once again the wind howling all around us.
This Scarce Bordered Straw was the highlight in a meagre catch in the moth trap this morning.

Saturday, 4 July 2020

Saturday 04/07/2020

Black-winged Stilt this morning on the ARC
When I finished going through a very poor catch in the moth trap this morning, I went to the ARC where the Black-winged Stilt was still strutting around albeit quite distantly. Over the lake 100s of Swifts, Swallows, Sand and House Martins were hawking, along with the nesting Common Terns. I have no idea how well they are doing as it very difficult to see onto the raft, nigh on impossible during this windy spell.
Black-winged Stilt with Little Egret and a single Mediterranean Gull taken on Thursday
A long walk from home this afternoon around Galloways and the hay fields saw little in the wind, but several Yellow Wagtails were nice.
Manx Shearwater the highlight of this evenings sea watch
This evenings sea watch from the fishing boats 17.15-18-15:
Manx Shearwater: 1W
Gannet: 14W
Cormorant: 2 on sea
Common Tern: 18W
Common Swift: 14 out
A somewhat slow and cold watch, the obvious highlight being the single Manx Shearwater.

 Plumed Fan-foot a scarcity in my trap 01/07/2020
Shore Wainscot another scarcity in my trap 01/07/2020

Wednesday, 1 July 2020

Wednesday 01/07/2020

Gull-billed Tern
It would seem that the Gull-billed Tern has now departed, I've certainly not seen it for the last 2 days nor have any of the other locals. The Black-winged Stilt is hanging on.
Gull-billed Tern
Gull-billed Tern
Gull-billed Tern
Gull-billed Tern
Gull-billed Tern
Gull-billed Tern
A short sea watch today was predictably disappointing, with just a handful of Gannets and Common Terns and a single Mediterranean Gull among the loafing Gulls at The Patch. It would seem that there is very low quantities of fish off Dungeness, all the Gannets flew through without trying to feed, no Sandwich Terns and no Harbour Porpoises which would normally be guaranteed this time of year. I have no idea whether the problem is sea temperature, over fishing or some other natural cause I just hope it is a one off year but I fear not.
The Black-winged Stilt was still present today
I took a long walk this afternoon around Galloways across the hay fields and reserve and back via the fields in front of my house. Highlights being several newly fledged Yellow Wagtails, 2 Cuckoo's Peregrine, Hobby, 100s each of Swifts and Sand Martins feeding over the fields and 3 Great White Egrets, the ditches were relatively quiet but I suspect the birds are busy feeding young or incubating.
Bordered Straw
The moth trap was a little better this morning , producing my first Bordered Straw of the year, 3rd Laingmaid's Yellow Underwing. first Dark Swordgrass of the year, 32 Silver Y, and 100+ Xylostella.
Laingmaid's Yellow underwing

Saturday, 27 June 2020

Saturday 27/06/2020

Gull-billed Tern
Although the Gull-billed tern and the Black-winged Stilt are the stars there is plenty of other birds to be seen around Dungeness in June. Admittedly it is much harder work finding them, but they are there to be found and you never know what else you might find. If your'e not out in the field looking then you will never find or see anything. The Lydd Camp Little Owls can usually be seen by the watch towers, Barn Owls can be seen at Scotney, Cheyne and Boulderwall, with a little effort Turtle Doves and Tree Sparrows can be found on Walland. 
Gull-billed Tern

Black-winged Stilt

Ruff with Redshanks
Green Sandpiper
Honey Buzzard getting a hot welcome from the local Herring Gulls

1 of a family of 6 ravens around Dengemarsh
Meadow Pipit on the perimeter wall
Jay a local scarcity in Lydd
Red Fox

Tuesday, 23 June 2020

Gull-billed Tern and a Stilt!

Black-winged Stilt still present at the ARC this afternoon
Gull-billed Tern at the ARC this afternoon

Monday, 22 June 2020

Monday 22/06/2020

 Little Gull hawking over Dengemarsh this morning
It was nice to see the first returning Sand Martins today and the first Little Gull for a few weeks. No sign of any Cattle Egrets today but at least 2 Great White Egrets were present, also 2 Hobbys and the usual Warblers, a Bittern made some half hearted grunts but otherwise it was fairly quiet. This evening I visited the ARC where I came across a Black-winged Stilt which was happily feeding until flushed by a Marsh Harrier and last seen heading high west. Hopefully I will get round to counting the usual summer build up of Pochard as there are already several 100s present.
The first Sand Martin of hopefully many 1,000s to be seen around Dungeness the next few weeks
Black-winged Stilt on the ARC this evening before being flushed by a Marsh Harrier
Feeding on the floating New Zealand Pygmy Weed(Crassula)

Little Egret at the ARC