Tuesday, 11 August 2020

And finally I get a 2020 Wheatear

I drove down to Dungeness yesterday in the hope of finding some migrants and on the drive down I had a Tawny Owl fly low across the M20 in front of me thankfully missing the traffic. On arrival at Dunge a drive down Galloways delivered my first year tick with a single Whinchat. The road was open until 8.30am before the firing started at Lydd ranges and other birds here were lot's of Linnet and Meadow Pipit along with a couple of breeding pairs of Stonechat and Whitethroat. 

A young Stonechat


I then managed to find a couple of Wheatear in the area around the RNLI to finally give me that tick and by far my latest Wheatear of any year list but it's always pleasing to see these little crackers. A Peregrine  was all I had to mention here before I set off for a walk around the Long Pit in search of migrants but I found only Willow Warbler, Blackcap and Whitethroat again of any note.


By now the car park at ARC pit was open so I popped in to add Glossy Ibis to the year list, Marsh Harrier, an adult Little Gull, a couple of Green Sands and a Common Sand were about all else of note here and Denge Marsh was very quiet too as I searched again for migrants. The reserve was closed to visitors and although you can walk the public paths I decided against it as it was getting too hot to be comfortable walking about in it.

Long Pit

This morning I popped out for a local twitch at Amwell and quickly found the Temminck's Stint on the island in front of the hide from the viewpoint. I've seen these little guys before but was particularly struck by how tiny this one looked as it sat in the shade provided by a resting Gadwall and walked with a Coot for company.

Amwell with the position of the Stint highlighted

Look how tiny that is next to the coot.

Migration seems to have really kicked off now with Spurn having a massive variety yesterday having two life ticks and eight year ticks on offer to me if I could make the journey and to my added frustration on this occasion because I didn't go they all stayed overnight. 

A probable Scopoli's Shearwater was also found yesterday and has been successfully twitched by a few today. This hobby of ours is crazy for sure and I have to pinch myself sometimes and remind myself that it is a hobby but as mad as it sounds I can understand the thrill of connecting with that Shearwater today and can't help wish I'd been in the group.

Lot's of Tigers about this year too

Found this guy resting in the garden too today

Year list now 244

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