Saturday, 29 January 2011

Friday, 28 January 2011

The Waxwings in Snodland were showing well all day.As well as feeding on Cotoneaster berries they were also seen to feed on some nearby fallen Apples and in a crab apple tree on the opposite side of the road from the Cotoneaster bush.

Thursday, 27 January 2011

January 27th (Snodland)

A flock of (25) Waxwings was seen this afternoon at 1530 feeding in a large Cotoneaster bush near to the junction of Hollow lane and Benedicts road.The light for photography was very bad,hopefully they will still be around at the weekend when the light should be better.
I`ve been keeping an eye on this particular bush since the birds first arrived in southern Britain.

Tuesday, 25 January 2011

January 25th (New Hythe)

On my walk this morning birds that I noted included (42) Gadwall (22) Teal (1) Redshank and (2) G B B Gulls along the river,(1) calling Cetti`s Warbler in the sunken marsh,at least (4) Bullfinch in the hawthorns along the river bank,(1) Fieldfare in the west scrub and (1) redhead Smew (1) Goosander (1) Kingfisher and (27) Shoveler on the streamside lake.The Alders on the edge of the streamside lake held at least (4) Siskin,there was also good numbers of Blue,Great and Long-tailed Tits in the area.
The Herons have been busy in the Heronry for about the past two weeks now.This morning I noted that at least five nests were occupied.

Wednesday, 19 January 2011

January 19th (Garden)

I had my small net up in the garden for a while during the early afternoon and caught - Reed Bunting (4) Starling (1) Goldfinch (1) and Blackcap (1 female).The Blackcap was the first ringed in the garden this winter.
Since the start of the year my garden ringing total stands at - Robin (2) Reed Bunting (13) Starling (1) Long-tailed Tit (10) Goldfinch (3) Blue Tit (2) Blackcap (1) and Dunnock (1).

While I was taken down the net at 2.45 a RAVEN flew over the garden calling as it went,it was heading north towards Halling.

Tuesday, 18 January 2011

January 18th (New Hythe)

I came across the Bittern while I was scanning Brookland lake from one of the fishing platforms.As I turned to walk off the platform I noticed the bird standing in the reeds only a few feet from me.I knew once I had made eye contact with it,it would go,so I quickly fired of a few shots and then up it jumped and flew across to the far side of the lake.
I then walked around to the streamside lake where I found the Goosander and one of the three redhead Smew that are in the area.

Monday, 17 January 2011

January 17th (Alders lake)

I popped along to the Alders lake this afternoon and saw the third redhead Smew.

At one stage during the morning (13) Reed Buntings were feeding in our garden.

Sunday, 16 January 2011

January 16th (New Hythe)

Much brighter this morning,it was nice to be out,southwest.
Birds I noted this morning were (30) Lapwing which flew south along the river,a calling Cetti`s Warbler in the sunken marsh,(5) Shelduck,(3) Goldeneye,(1) redhead SMEW and (1) Goosander on Abbey Mead,a second SMEW on the streamside lake,a drake Wigeon on the river and (2) Sparrowhawks over Brookland lake.
Very few Redwing remain in the area,most of the berries have now been eaten.
I`ve just been reading Phil Sharp`s Blog and apparently a third SMEW was seen on Alders lake today.

Thursday, 13 January 2011

January 13th (New Hythe)

The Redhead Smew was seen on Brookland lake this morning,until the unwanted attention of a B H Gull made it take flight.
I also saw (1) redhead Goldeneye on Abbey Mead,where I also saw the first of (2) Bitterns,the other was seen in the northwest corner of Brookland lake.The Gadwall flock frequenting the river was at (42) birds.

My total for Reed Buntings ringed in the garden for 2010 was (55),of which (38) were ringed in the first quarter and (17) in the last.
So far this year my total stands at just (2) birds,I don`t ring during very cold weather,so it would have been higher.I did however retrap a bird on the 10th (w.t.17.2gm) a female which I ringed in the garden on the 02 02 10 (w.t. 17gm)

My Goldfinch feeders held (19) birds on the 12th.

Tuesday, 11 January 2011


January 1982 started during a thaw from the very harsh weather of December 1981.The thaw however was only temporary as the cold weather returned again on the 6th,by the 13th all the lakes were frozen over,they had thawed by the 23rd.

WILDFOWL Shelduck (83) were present on Abbey Mead 4th,with (60) at Burham 30th. Ruddy Shelduck (2) at Burham 23rd.Teal (550 max) at Burham 19th.Wigeon (1) Burham 17th with (4) at New Hythe 25th.Pochard (420) on Abbey Mead 4th,with 650 23rd (300) were seen on the river 16th Gadwall (18) on Abbey Mead 9th.Tufted Duck (200) on Abbey Mead 9th,with (150) on the river 17th.Shoveler (1) at Burham 2nd,with 3 there 6th.Scaup (1) drake on Abbey Mead 9th,with (1) duck on the river 17th.Ruddy Duck (2) drakes and (1) duck on the river 17th.Goldeneye (2) on the river 25th.Red breasted Merganser (2) flying around a frozen Abbey Mead 13th.Wood Duck (3) seen on the millstream 31st.BLACK THROATED DIVER (1) was seen on the river 17th.BITTERN (1) was found by the Red Lion Pub at Snodland 4th.WADERS Ruff (4) at Burham 4th,with (3) 19th.Redshank (100) at Burham 2nd.Snipe (100) at Burham 2nd.Dunlin (400) at Burham 2nd.Lapwing (200) at Burham 30th.

January 11th (New Hythe)

Rather overcast,though quite bright at times,milder.
Not a lot to report this morning,the best sightings being the redhead Smew on Abbey Mead,the Goosander on the Streamside lake and two Shelduck on the river.

When I left the house to go to the lakes a Song Thrush was singing away at the bottom of our garden,ten or more years ago this wouldn`t have been worth mentioning.

Wednesday, 5 January 2011

December 5th (New Hythe)

Overcast to start,much brighter later on during the visit,rather cold.
Birds I noted this morning during my walk were Gadwall (30) on the river,with (6) more on Brookland,Goldeneye (2) on Brookland,Teal (35) on the river,Treecreeper (1) in the hawthorns along by the river and (1) flyover GOLDEN PLOVER.
The Bittern in the pics was flushed from the path which runs over the mound at Brookland lake.
It flew up and then more or less dropped down the bank into the brambles and thickets.I debated for a while whether or not to try and catch it,but in the end decided to let it be,as to try and catch it where it was would have stressed it even further.It was probably in a very weakened state,which seems a shame considering the very harsh weather it has just got through.However when I went back to the spot about thirty minutes later I couldn`t see it,so hopefully it managed to make its own way out.

Sunday, 2 January 2011

January 2nd (New Hythe)

Quite bright at first,then becoming overcast,rather cold.
I could only managed a quick visit to the lakes this morning.First I looked at Brookland lake where the only bird of note I found was a redhead Goldeneye.I then had a short walk along the millstream path where I photographed the drake Teal and Water Rail seen in the pics.

Saturday, 1 January 2011

January 1st (New Hythe)

Just a quick post to say the Goosander was seen on Tesco lake first thing and later during the morning it was seen by a group of us,which included Terry Laws flying into Brookland lake where it joined up with a Merganser that I had found on there a short while before.After only a short stay though it flew off in the direction of the Streamside lake with the Merganser close behind. Terry was very pleased as it was a New Hythe tick for him.Did the Goosander know that the Merganser was on the lake,as it seems strange that both flew off together just after the Goosander had flown in.

I have listed all my past records of Mergansers seen at New Hythe below.

My first record was of a fine drake seen on Abbey Mead lake on April 10th 1971.
1979 was an exceptional year for this species.One was seen on January 8th,with (3) by the 22nd.On February 17th,there was an influx of (10) drakes and (13) red-heads.The following day most had departed but at least (6) red-heads remained until March the 4th,odd birds were recorded up until the 25th.During 1980,(12) birds were present on November 12th,with a lone red-head from October 29th through to April 20th 1981.During 1982,(2) red-heads were seen on January 13th,with (1) on December 12th.On February 1st 1977,there was a pair on the river at Holborough.