Bbbrrr it was chilly at the weekend but here are the highlights:
2 visits to Dungeness (morning with the parents, afternoon with Angela - good to bump into many familiar faces, you know who you are!)
ARC - Little Ringed Plover, 5 really bright Yellow Wagtails, Sedge Warbler performing song flights, Whitethroat, couple of Sand & House Martins, Swallows and Little Egret.
Point - male Stonechat, several groups of Brent and 7 Greylag Geese, 4 Mediterranean Gulls, Common Scoters, single Common Tern and Arctic Skua, plus many Gannets and Sandwich Terns.
Dengemarsh - 2 Ravens - 1 on a dead lamb.
Gully - Chiffchaffs and Willow Warblers, 1 Sedge Warbler.
Galloways Road & Herons Park - Sedge Warbler, Willow Warbler, 3 Stonechats (2 males), 2 male Wheatears.
RSPB - 3 Whimbrel (field along entrance track by double bend), 5 Avocet on Burrowes.
Back at home in Ashford, the first 2 House Martins of the year over the house.
A morning trip to Oare Marshes and despite the wind, a pleasant visit with some quality birding and good company: MW, GB, JR, A&BF, JB, Dave, S? and others all out birdwatching. Highlights:
Common Tern over the east flood briefly then circled off high with 2 Mediterranean Gulls, Kestrel, Marsh Harrier, small ringtail Hen Harrier (male?), Merlin (female at Uplees Copse feeding on a Linnet or Wheatear), Many Blackwits, Avocets, Little Egrets, 3+ Wheatear, several Swallows, Green Woodpecker, 2 Whimbrels east over the saltmarsh, couple of Yellow Wagtails and the star bird - the male Ring Ouzel at Uplees - see previous post for photos.
Moving back inland to Stodmarsh NNR to escape the cold wind, we saw a good selection of birds around the Alder Wood and Reedbeds: 8 Blackcaps (7 singing males, 1 of which was paired with a female), our first singing Reed Warbler of the year, Sedge Warbler, Water Rail, Treecreeper, Teal, Marsh Harrier (male), Green Sandpiper in flight plus the largest group of hirrundines seen so far this spring, with 100+ Sand Martins hawking insects over the main lake, with a handful of Swallows thrown in for good measure.
Heading back to Ashford we spotted a Little Egret along the Little Stour at Nargate Street, Common Buzzard at Godmersham, while Eastwell Lake held a pair of Pochard, 2 pairs of Great-Crested Grebes, c10 Little Grebes, singing Mistle Thrush, Buzzard, Sparrowhawk and around 75 Swalllows, with a couple each of House and Sand Martins.