Sunday, 13 August 2017

Long-billed Dowitcher at Oare Marsh

Another visit to Oare Marsh today in order for Jim to connect with the Dowitcher.
We arrived at about 7am and with the sun in our face from the path we walked up to the sea wall and quickly found the Bonaparte's Gull out on the mud to the east of the slipway. Whimbrel, Curlew, Redshank and Turnstone added to the list here before we walked around the wall to view the East flood from the East with the sun behind us.

Long-billed Dowitcher ( and Curlew Sand, Ruff, Blackwit, Lapwing, Dunlin, Redshank etc)
Long-billed Dowitcher (distant cropped record shot)
Dowitcher in flight
Bonaparte's Gull

The Dowitcher was showing well from here and gave great scope views as it walked up the edge of the reeds before flying out to join the Blackwits and roost. Two Curlew Sands and a pair of Spotshanks, Ruff , Dunlin, LRP and Snipe added to the wader count. A few Yellow Wagtails were present and Bearded Tit "pinged" as we stood watching the Dowitcher.
Back at the road and we added Common Sand and Little Stint to the day list before setting off for Elmley which was a total disappointment with zero water and zero birds!


Wednesday, 9 August 2017

Long-billed Dowitcher at Oare Marsh

A meeting in Orpington today put me close enough to Oare to try for the LB Dowitcher that returned yesterday.
I arrived at 4.30 in the rain and scanned the hundreds of waders finding Blackwits, Avocet, Golden Plover, Dunlin, Redshank, Spotshank, Knot, Snipe and Little Stint before eventually getting a shout from another guy that had located the Dowitcher in the far North East corner of East flood.

The drive home was a nightmare in heavy rain with the M25 and A2 being a real mess but I somehow cut through the traffic and made it home in about 90 minutes.

Year list now 247

And another Fox pic to add some colour.


Sunday, 6 August 2017

Cley birds

A few images from Cley

Bearded Tit /  Bearded Reedling
Bearded Tit
Three of the eight feeding in the bush
Same bush different bird
Sedge Warbler
Meadow Pipit
And apologies but here's a few more Fox shots!.


Blue Rock Thrush accepted

Life list now 385

Sunday, 30 July 2017

Missing Monty

Another trip to Norfolk in search of Montagu's Harrier and another trip home without seeing any despite scoping some very promising habitat.

We did encounter a nice Barn Owl on the way up and a stop at Titchwell was good without any really noteable birds.

Barn Owl
Shame about the gloomy light
Lot's of Ruff, Avocet, Black & Barwits along with the usual waders. Three Spoonbill sat out on freshmarsh and we picked out a couple of Little Gulls and a few Med Gulls in the roost. On the sea a couple of Arctic Skua came close and both Little and Sandwich Terns hunted the shore line.

Despite some useful information on the Norfolk Monty's we found only Buzzard and Marsh Harrier although one particular Buzzard was almost entirely white.

Avocet at Titchwell
Another Fox in the rain 
Reed Bunting at Titchwell

No ticks but a nice days birding all the same.

Thursday, 27 July 2017

New hanging bird table

I received a new bird table this week and the locals have enjoyed using it.
My old table was a pretty sad looking thing so it was nice to hang this much improved dining area out for my feathered friends. 

The hanging feeder
I added some softbill ( Prosecto Insectivorous) food and within minutes of putting the feeder up it was being visited by Blue Tits. Great Tits, Robins and Starlings. The Pigeons found it challenging and the Magpies found it interesting.
The table is really well made using solid timber and the rustic rope adds to it's appeal. The  Food stays dry in the rain and I think it'll stand the test of time too as it appears well preserved. I'd highly recommend it if you're looking for one so much so that I'll probably buy another for the bottom of the garden.

A couple of links here to the good people at Haith's who supplied the table and the food.

Sunday, 23 July 2017

Bonaparte's Gull at Oare Marsh

Another trip to Oare today to get the old fella a year tick with the Bonaparte's Gull which we very quickly found feeding out on the mud to the right of the slip way.
A couple of Whimbrel was the only other bird of note on the mud but back on the reserve we had a couple of Turtle Dove, at least nine adult Curlew Sandpipers, a single Spotted Redshank and the other usual waders etc in good numbers.


Bearded Reedling

A quick stop at Cliffe on the way was disappointing  as the Marsh Sandpiper had been flushed by a Peregrine early this morning and failed to show during our stay. We'd seen it before but wanted a closer look from Radar pool. Large numbers of Greenshank roosted and a couple of Common Sands were seen before we left for home and an appointment with some skirting boards I'd promised to keep. Of note was the massive flock of Hirundines numbering well over a thousand as we left Cliffe heading for the M2.

Year list now 246