Thursday, 29 December 2016

December 29th (New Hythe)

Fox (Mill stream) and Pochard (Abbey Meads) long gone are the winters when 300+ wintered on the lake.
So far this winter at New Hythe its been slow bird wise.No cold weather wildfowl or grebes of note and I still haven`t seen a Siskin or Redpoll,although  Goldfinches as usual are present in good numbers feeding on the Teasel heads.This morning I had 49 species,birds of note being -Kingfisher (1),Little Egret (1),Redshank (1),Green Sandpiper (1) Snipe (2) Pochard (12),Shoveler (4) Teal (38) Lapwing (4) Common Buzzard (1) Chiffchaff (2) Water Rail (1) Goldcrest (1) and Treecreeper (1).

Pochard continue there downward trend in numbers.My maximum count so far this winter is just (19) birds.My garden is also slow,with no sightings so far of Reed Buntings or Blackcaps.
Robin,Little Grebe,Grey Heron and Moorhen.

Saturday, 24 December 2016

December 24th (`grey` Stonechat)

DNA samples (the birds droppings) come up trumps again.The grey Stonechat seen at Dungeness in November has been proved to be a Stejneger`s Stonechat (Siberian).

Wednesday, 21 December 2016


Monday, 19 December 2016

December 17th.

On the way back from Rye,I looked in on Dungeness to see the Ringed-billed Duck.

Sunday, 11 December 2016

December 11th (Sheppey and Strood)

Today I spent a very pleasant morning on Sheppey,My target bird was the Richard`s Pipit,back again for its forth winter,I believe?.I did manage to see it,but only in flight.Once it had gone to ground it proved to be very elusive.
I was also pleased to see a nice male and female Hen Harrier quartering the salt marsh nearby.a species which is now less common on Sheppey than formerly.

On my way back home I stopped off at Strood to see the Waxwings.
Redshank,Sanderling,Turnstone,Stonechat (Leysdown) and male Hen Shellness.
Waxwings 3,(feeding on berries and flycatching) opposite the Bounty pub Strood.

Wednesday, 7 December 2016

December 7th (Sandwich Bay and Stonelees)

News of a Jack Snipe showing well in front of the Restharrow scrape hide yesterday. Prompted myself and some friends to pay the place a visit this morning.Although there was plenty of Common Snipe on view,unfortunately the Jack Snipe was not seen.Which was a shame as the light this morning was very good.

We called in at Stonelees,later and managed to find two Waxwings.A small flock was reported from there last week I believe.
Common Snipe,Kestral and drake Teal (Restharrow scrape)
Waxwing ( of two seen) this bird was watched flycatching,A method of feeding which I have not witnessed with Waxwings before.

Wednesday, 23 November 2016

November 23rd (Dungeness)

I went to Dungeness today with Bob Bland and friends.The weather was grotty,but the bird watching was good.Birds seen G W Egret 4,Cattle Egret 1,Little Egret 3,Ring-billed Duck,Dartford Warbler 1,Goosander 2,Marsh Harrier 3,Bewick`s Swan 4,L E Owl,Yellow legged Herring Gull and Stonechat 5.
G W Egret,one of four seen and male Peregrine (RSPB reserve)
The grey Stonechat in the Kearton road triangle.It reminds me in some ways of a Grey Bushchat of the Indian Subcontinent.We also saw one Dartford Warbler there.

Wednesday, 16 November 2016

November 16th (New Hythe)

Green Sandpiper and Snipe.
I had a look at the river at New Hythe this morning,it was low.

I saw - Snipe 1,Green Sandpiper 1,Redshank 2,Mallard 15,Teal 64,Grey Heron 8,Black-headed Gull 74,Herring Gull 6 and Great Black backed Gull 1.

Tuesday, 8 November 2016

November 8th (New Hythe)

Whooper and Mute Swans (Abbey Meads)
After a tip off last night from Phil about a Whooper Swan on Abbey Meads,This morning I was down there nice and early.Firstly I set a net to hopefully catch a Redwing or two in the East Scrub and then walked the short distance to Abbey Meads.I saw the swan immediately feeding at the far end in the northeast corner.As I was watching it,blow me,another Whooper flew over high,calling as it went heading north.Scanning the lake again I came across seven Pochard and then a nice drake Goldeneye.As I turned to walk back to the net,I heard the calls of Wigeon.Looking up,fifty or more appeared over the lake and then flew off north.I have not had  an adrenaline rush like that at New Hythe in years.For a moment,I thought I was back in the 80s.When I got back to the net,I had a Song Thrush and yes,a Redwing waiting for me,great stuff.The recent cold Northerlies have certainly displaced a few birds.

Phil went to Abbey Meads later during the day and saw 46 Wigeon on Abbey Meads.So I believe some of the birds I saw earlier may have returned.When I saw them I thought they may have flown up from the river,which flows past the lake.
Whooper Swan,Goldeneye,Fieldfare,Wigeon and Redwing

Monday, 7 November 2016

November 7th

For the past few weeks or more.A very tame Fox,or should I say,it shows no fear.Has been roaming around our near neighbourhood.This afternoon whilst I working in the front garden.It came walking up the drive and stood watching me from only a few feet away.Personly,I don`t encourage it,but I know some people put out food for the local Foxes.
Most urban Foxes roam around at dusk,or at night.This one on the other hand,can be seen roaming around during the day.I believe it to be a young vixen,but I could be proved wrong.