Sunday, 14 January 2018

Still no Dowitcher

After picking up a few year ticks during the working week I hitched a ride with the Jims this morning with the first stop being the watchpoint at Capel Fleet in Kent.

Common Buzzard
Arriving just after first light we picked up a Barn Owl on the drive down to the point and watched as the Marsh Harriers left the roost and lingered around the fleet. A single Hen Harrier left the roost but didn't linger. We were surprised when the local Hooded Crow came in to feed on a dead Swan but again it didn't stay long leaving the carrion to the Buzzards and a Kestrel.

Kestrel on a dead Swan
Corn Bunting hung around the usual brambles and around 300 Linnets gathered on the wires and the road. Back at the fleet we scanned the geese and found first three Whooper Swans in the herd of Mutes and then the White-fronted Geese among the Barnacles.

Hundreds of Linnet feeding along the roadside
We headed next to Shellness and found the shoreline alive with waders including Sanderling, Knot, Dunlin, Turnstone, Redshank and Oystercatcher. Scanning back over the fields from the sea wall we quickly found a large flock of Skylark and as they took flight we could pick out some Snow Bunting with ease although finding them on the ground was more difficult but after about an hour we managed to find a couple of Snow and a single Lapland Bunting in the scope.

Our last point of call on this little trip into Kent was Oare Marsh were we failed again to find the wintering Long-billed Dowitcher despite it being reported from where we stood while we stood that one out!

Year list now 142

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