Saturday, 19 December 2015

Glossy Ibis at Petts Level

With 2015 almost over and having missed a couple of Glossy Ibis so far this year we decided to head down to Petts Level today hoping to connect with the wintering bird. We arrived at first light and quickly found the large flock of Coots that the Ibis has been keeping close to. Within a couple of minutes we spotted the target wondering around in the field and watched it for a couple of hours. Also seen here were a Barn Owl and a pair of Marsh Harrier along with the usual waders and ducks.

Glossy Ibis at Petts Level
Glossy Ibis in flight
Moving on to Dunge we entered the reserve and found the Long-eared Owl roosting in bushes at the back of the dipping pool. A great roost site as it a) gives everybody a chance to see it and b) keeps ever body at a decent distance so that the Owl can continue roosting without disturbance.

Long-eared Owl at Dungeness
In the hide we bumped into Martin C (of Acadian Flycatcher fame) and congratulated him on his success. Martin obliged by putting us onto a second winter Caspian Gull that was roosting out on the shingle. A cracking bird with the cleanest of clean heads.

2nd Winter Caspian Gull 
Our final stop was the fishing boats where we found a first winter Caspian Gull taking advantage of the bread being thrown by the locals. This bird was larger than our previous and bullied the other gulls taking most of the bread filling it's crop to bursting point. A cracking encounter with a short sea watch delivering just a few Red-throated Diver, Auks, Gannets and a Slav amongst the Great Crested Grebes for our trouble.

1st Winter Caspian Gull at the fishing boats Dunge!
Caspian Gull

Year list now 273

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