Sunday, 22 January 2012

January 22nd (New Hythe)

Bright,but chilly,NW.
I walked out to the Sunken Marsh this morning to see how work is proceeding to repair a broken water main that runs beneath it.All I could see however was the pumps still hard at work removing as much water as possible so that heavy machinery can move in.
As far as I know the work should be completed by the Spring.So at least things should be back to normal by the start of the nesting season.Also hopefully the short term habitat change caused by the machinery may pull in a few good birds.
I then walked over to the Streamside lake and saw the Goosander,Bittern and one Kingfisher.

This morning I had three Lesser Redpoll on our garden feeders.So keep your eyes peeled there might be a few around the lakes.

Wednesday, 18 January 2012

The elephant track which runs along the northern shore of the Tank and which eventually entered the forest by the Dam,was a great early morning walk.Just past where the track narrows and enters the forest was a nice area of secondary forest with open areas,a great place for Butterflies.Plaintive Cuckoo,Paradise-flycatcher and Brown-capped Babbler were also seen there.
Today we visited Kaudulla National Park known for its large herds of elephants.However we were limited to small areas due to the recent flooding.
Birds that I noted were Grey-headed Fish eagle,Crested serpent Eagle,Shikra,Eurasian Stone Curlew,Jerdon`s Bushlark,Little Green Bee-eater,Painted Stork,Peafowl and Orange-breasted Green Pigeon.
Disappointingly our excurtion out to the Minneriya National Park was curtailed due to extensive flooding.We instead visited a smaller reserve.Birds I noted were Changeable-Hawk Eagle,Black-winged Kite and Jerdon`s Bushlark.The bird I most wanted to see Sri Lanka Junglefowl was seen by people in the jeep in front of ours.
Although the week long stay at Bentota Beach Hotel retricted the number of species that I saw during the holiday,I did manage to add Little Tern,Mongolian Plover,Whimbrel,Common Sand Sandpiper and Turnstone to my list.
BIRDS SEEN AT BENTOTA Brahminy Kite,W B Kingfisher,B T Bea-eater,L G Bea-eater,Whimbrel,Mongolian Plover,Little Tern,Red-vented Bulbul,Turnstone,Common myna,Magpie Robin,Brown Flycatcher,Red-rumped Swallow,Palm Swift,Common Taylor Bird,Black-headed Oriole,Spotted Dove,White-bellied Drongo,Common Sandpiper,Red-backed Woodpecker,Cattle egret,Asian Kowl,House Crow,Long-billed Crow,Red-wattled Lapwing,Yellow-billed Bulbul and Purple-rumped Sunbird.
Magpie Robin,Brown Flycatcher,Drongo,Red-vented Bulbul and White-breasted Kingfisher were all common birds in the Hotel grounds.
Two Blue tailed Bee-eaters were feeding over the low vegetation at the back of the beach.
During our week long stay at Bentota a flock of forty Mongolian Plovers was present on the beach.

Tuesday, 17 January 2012

January 17th (Garden)

This morning we had up to (12)Reed Buntings feeding in the garden.I managed to catch four of them,two of the birds were retraps,both ringed in the garden during January 2011 and one of the other birds proved to be a control,a bird caught and ringed by another bird ringer.I will send the number off to the BTO and they will forward the details sometime in the near future.

January 16th (Dungeness)

I spent the day at Dungeness with Bob Bland and Derrick Jackson.We first stopped off on Walland Marsh to tick off Bewick`s Swan and Tree Sparrow.The Swans (48) were conveniently feeding in the fields opposite the Farm House where the Sparrows are.
Our first stop at Dungeness was the Hanson hide (A R C) pits,where we noted Tufted Duck,Pochard,Gadwall,Teal,Wigeon,Goldeneye (6) Smew (1 drake 2 red-heads)Goosander (1)Long-tailed Duck (1) Shelduck (5)Mallard and Bittern (2).
A thirty minute sea watch from near the fishing boats produced good numbers of Auks and Great Crested Grebes,along with smaller numbers of Gannets,Kittiwakes and one Red-throated Diver.Two flocks of Brent Geese which probably totalled around (250)flying east,was rather unusal we thought for the time of year.
The Dengemarsh hide which is usually good,didn`t produce for us today.The only birds of note that we saw were two Marsh Harrier.
As we were leaving the reserve to go home.A G W Egret was spotted close to Boulderwell farm in one of the reedy dykes.

Saturday, 14 January 2012

January 14th (Sheppey)

I was back on Sheppey again today,but this time with Jeanette and our dog.No serious birding,just a pleasant stroll along the beach at Leysdown,enjoying the glourious weather.