Friday, 31 October 2008
Sunday, 26 October 2008
Almost a quick as it appeared it flew into the reeds and the trail went cold though fortunately following a few calls to wake others from their comfy beds the bird put on a spectacular show at reasonable range allowing all the enjoy and the dog walkers a mere day tick as they had already seen it on previous days
Saturday, 18 October 2008
Chaffinch 290 all moving West often in small groups, 129 later on
Siskin 1, 6 in the afternoon
Fieldfare (as pictured 'poorly' above) 24, another 26 in the afternoon
Redwing 124, 98 in the second session
alba Wag 3, 2 later on
Skylark 9, only 1 later on
Grey Wagtail 1
On the raptor front, the day saw a cracking Peregrine this afternoon, 2 Common Buzzards, 3+ Kestrels, and 3+ Sparrowhawks. It would be interesting to know the full scale of the movement today and numbers involved, clearly across quite a broad front.
Thursday, 16 October 2008
John Cantelo was evidently getting some hot news on birds or the announcement that Sats tests for 14 year olds had been scrapped.
Great Grey Shrike in Essex
The crowd at the Lesser Grey with The Young Ones passing by on their way to see Cliff http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=mVSlWD1yYA0
Wednesday, 15 October 2008
Despite a full days birding Reculver and North Foreland, the best we could muster was good counts of Redstart, Whinchat, Wheatear and Buzzards plus bird of the day, Yellow-browed Warbler in the trees at Reculver caravan park. Evidently we may have to change our tactics at Foreness in order to find rare birds, maybe the above mode of transport is the answer to locate those low to the ground skulking rares that lurk in these parts. (what a good way to bird Elmwood Avenue) The Saganauts were out in force and the Saga Hound, but sadly no rare Shrikes or mega rare Warblers or Flycatchers in these here parts.
It had a been a long day and the Whinchat pretty much sums of the autumn in Kent so far if weekends are the only time to get out, though I did manage to see an Osprey at Stoke Saltings, a Wryneck over in Essex at Rainham RSPB, such a great reserve.
Another trip out to East Kent saw us watching this superb Red backed Shrike in the allotments adjacent to Margate cmy. Steve Tomlinson has watched this area for many years and turned up some good birds, as cemetries and allotments often do. To keep track of the recent sightings seehttp://steve-tomlinson.blogspot.com/ A typically autumn bird in Kent, but it would be better if we had a good steady trickle of rare birds to see in Kent as with the NE or Shetlands. Foreness and East Kent are clearly under watched and there is plenty of good habitat to check, though easterlies in Kent are often very hit and miss hence the absence of rares. Historically if you look at the rarities recorded at Foreness/Margate the list is endless, with Isabelline, Woodchat, Great Grey and Red-backed Shrike, Booted Warbler (2), Aquatic Warbler, Radde's Warblers, Pallas's, Yellow browed and Dusky Warblers. Rustic Bunting, Pied Wheatear, Trumpeter Finch, Red-throated Pipit, Alpine Swifts, the list goes on.........
Will the birds 'only' appear mid week and fly before the weekend?
Sunday, 5 October 2008
This Ringed Plover was also completely relaxed at our presence and allowed a good many shots to be fired off.
Fortunately for our Sheepdog, he was very much under the impression that we had come to 'SheepWorld' as the Sheep also very very approachable and despite the two hours or so spent driving around the airfield we never heard a sound from him, he was mesmerised by all the Sheep.
Back on the Rame Peninsula, a pleasant day watching the oats coming in and out of Devonport allowed for mega close views as HMS Talent shows above, that's the name Louise gave it after grabbing the bins off me and checking out the crew!
A visit to St John's Lake, a good place to see Med Gulls, though we've got plenty of them in Kent, still a good bird to see and watch from the car as you cross the ford towards Milbrook.
Despite many early mornings spent wandering around looking for migrants, this was the best I could come up with, a Ring Ousel that was present for two days near Rame Head. I also saw Tree Pipits, Crossbills, Redstart, stacks of Chiffs, the resident Ravens, Buzzards and plenty of Yellowhammers as seen below.
It was always a pleasure of an evening though to be able to relax in our farmhouse and enjoy watching the Badgers from the warmth of the living room, as well as Foxes and most memorable a Tawny Owl. What an excellent week, shame about the Yank waders!!