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Saturday 20 April 2013

A stroll around the Dungeness RSPB Reserve

Dungeness RSPB Reserve, 09:00 to 13:00
1 Bittern booming at Hookers, 3 Shelducks, 2 Little Grebes, 1 Grey Heron, 3 Marsh Harriers, 3 Kestrels (Dengemarsh), 6+ Ringed Plovers, 1 Grey Plover (Dengemarsh), 2 Dunlin (Dengemarsh), 2 Redshanks, 2 House Martins, 1 Reed Warbler (singing with many Sedge Warblers in the Dengemarsh/Hookers area), 6+ Whitethroats, 1 Chiffchaff, 1 Willow Warbler, 2 Cetti's Warblers, 2 Bearded Tits (Hookers & Dengemarsh), 2 Long-tailed Tits, 1 Tree Sparrow, 2 Ravens over Dengemarsh, 1 Little Egret (ARC Pit South End). 13+ Yellow Wagtails, 1 Blue-headed Wagtail behind Firth Hide with Yellow Wags.

A quick look at the sea revealed a few Gannets. There were several Arctic Terns amongst the Common Terns at the Patch.

Back inland...

Walland Marsh, 14:00
1 Kestrel, 1 Hobby (by the Woolpack Inn).

Kenardington, 15:00, RM Canal Bridge
2 Pheasants, 1 Common Buzzard, 1 Snipe, 1 Little Owl, 2 Green Woodpeckers, 1 Great Spotted Woodpecker, 6+ Swallows, 1 Reed Warbler (singing), 3 Blackcaps (2 males), 1 Whitethroat, 1 Chiffchaff.

Monday 15 April 2013

What A Weekend !!! Serin & Ring-necked Duck finds

Record shots of the cracking drake Ring-necked Duck that I found on the main lake at Conningbrook GP's, Ashford, yesterday lunchtime (14th April). I have finally found a rare bird on the local patch !!!

Conningbrook GP, 11:00 to 14:00
3 Mute Swans, 2 Gadwall (a pair), 1 Ring-necked Duck (cracking drake on the main lake with the Tufted Ducks), 90 Tufted Duck (circa, including 1 hybrid bird - showing Tufted x Pochard characteristics), 1 Great Crested Grebe (middle lake), 2 Grey Herons, 1 Little Egret, 2 Common Buzzards, 1 Kestrel (KP also saw a Hobby.), 2 Common Sandpipers, 2 Skylark (singing), 2 Sand Martins, 10+ Swallows, 1 House Martin, 5+ Blackcaps (3 males in a small flock), 5+ Chiffchaff (incl 3 singers), 2+ Willow Warblers (singing ), 2 Long-tailed Tits, 1 Treecreeper, 2 Chaffinches, c40 Linnets, 2 Yellowhammers, 3 Reed Buntings (1 singing male).

Not bad for a quick run out with Angela locally to find some summer migrants !!! Some frantic phones calls to the parents and local birders plus further texts and tweets resulted in some happy faces too.

Some great photos of the RND can also be found here:

Saturday 13th April: The other great find of the weekend!!!

Dungeness RSPB Reserve, 08:30 to 13:00

3 Goldeneyes (Females on Burrowes Pit), 1 Red-throated Diver (oiled summer plumage bird on ARC), 1+ Great White Egret (Cockles Bridge & New Diggings), 2 Little Egrets, 3 Marsh Harriers, 1 Sparrowhawk (ARC), 2 Oystercatchers (ARC south), 1 Green Woodpecker (ARC), 1 Sand Martin (ARC south end with several Swallows and House Martins), 2 Cetti's Warbler (heard), 2+ Chiffchaff (ARC Water Tower), 2+ Willow Warblers (ARC Water Tower), 1 Bearded Tit (Female - screen hide), 2 Tree Sparrows (Boulderwall Farm), 1 Raven over ARC Pit. 5 Yellow and 1 White Wagtails by visitor centre.

Dungeness Point, 09:00 to 11:00
7 Common Scoter, 1 Great Skua (flying east past the fishing boats), 1 Kittiwake (Immature on the beach), 2 Sandwich Terns, 1 Skylark (heard), 1 Meadow Pipit, 1 Black Redstart (male), 1 Stonechat (male), 8+ Wheatears, 1 Ring Ouzel (cracking male bird by Railway Station), 1 Chiffchaff, 2 Firecrests (in Gorse bushes by Railway Station).

But the star bird was...

A male SERIN, found by myself - seen flying into a bramble bush next to a singing Dunnock, near the New Lighthouse by the 5th Quarter shop. The bird then dropped down, feeding on the ground with House Sparrows. Several flights around the local area, calling and showing off the yellow rump before heading off towards the Old Lighthouse and the Power Station. Seen by c11 birders in total.

A great morning session with Angela and the parents before the afternoon rain hit with a vengeance.

Wednesday 3 April 2013

Year Ticks & Lifers in the cold

Monday 1st April 2013

Ashford, 08:50
Waxwings (in tree by Ash Close, Godinton Park) seen by the parents.

Dungeness RSPB Reserve, 09:00 to 14:00
1 Black-necked Grebe (Hookers Pit), 3 Goldeneyes (Females), 1 Little Grebe, 1 Great Crested Grebe, 3 Marsh Harriers, 2 Ringed Plovers (ARC Pit), 1 Snipe, 5 Black-tailed Godwits (ARC Pit), 2 Redshanks, 1 Redwing, 1 Cetti's Warbler, 2 Bearded Tit, 1 Tree Sparrow. No sign of the Bluethroat though.

A foray into East Sussex resulted in us connecting with one of the male Kentish Plovers on the new saltmarsh area at Rye Harbour NR. A lifer for Angela. A nice mix of other waders too: Avocets, Ringed Plovers, Redshanks, Dunlin, 1 Grey Plover.

Dungeness, 14:00, near Old Lighthouse
Black Redstart (Male), 1 Stonechat, 1 Wheatear (Male).

Walland Marsh, 14:30 to 15:00
Merlins (Newlands and Swan Farms) and 1 Peregrine.

Samphire Hoe, 16:00 to 17:00
1 Dunnock, 1 Robin, 1 Stonechat, 1 Redwing but no Bluethroat for Angela. We will try again.