A quiet end to the month. Eleven Sandwich Tern were offshore with 30+ Gannet, a Red-throated Diver and a Common Scoter. Elsewhere three Chiffchaff and a Goldcrest were singing onsite and a Rook flew east. Late afternoon reports included three Pale-bellied Brent with 25 Dark-bellied Brent Geese, which acted aggressively towards their cousins. Other afternoon records included 10 Ringed Plover, two Dunlin, single Sanderling, Bar-tailed Godwit and Turnstone in the Bight and a female Wheatear in front of the hide.
Pale-bellied Brent Goose 31/03/07 © Lee Collins Wheatear 31/03/07 © Lee Collins
Three Red-throated and two Great Northern Diver were on the sea with eight Guillemot, six Great-crested Grebe, three Razorbill, two Common Scoter and an Eider. Also feeding offshore six Sandwich Tern and off Orcombe large numbers of Gannet and Kittiwake. Elsewhere three Sand Martin flew through and two Brent Geese remain on the Golf Course.
The highlight today was of an overdue first for the year, 15 Sand Martin came in mid afternoon and fed over the Main Pond with at least five others later on. Elsewhere 20 Razorbill, 10 Great-crested Grebe, two Red-throated Diver and two Common Scoter were offshore, eight Curlew were on the beach, a Peregrine had Bull Hill all to itself and the Cetti's Warbler called briefly from bramble on the east side of Greenland Lake with two Wheatear, two Chiffchaff and a Reed Bunting nearby.
A single Slavonian Grebe was offshore with 50+ Shag, four Great-crested Grebe, two probable Scaup, three Common Scoter, a Red-throated Diver and an Eider. A Gadwall in Shutterton Creek was the first for the year, 10 Sandwich Tern were fishing and resting on buoys in the estuary with two intermedius Lesser Black-backed Gull on Bull Hill. Migrants included at least 13 Wheatear, mostly around the seawall and Warren Point, three Chiffchaff, including one abietinus type, three Chaffinch and two Rook flew east.
The Cetti's Warbler was calling from Greenland Lake again today remaining as elusive as ever. More signs of spring movement today included with 40 Wood Pigeon northwest over the reserve and even better the first two Swallow of the year flying east (the third year in row they have arrived on 27th March!) and at least four Wheatear onsite. Offshore there were two Great-crested Grebe, two Razorbill and a Red-throated Diver were on show. Elsewhere two littoralis Rock Pipit were on Warren Point.
A Red-throated Diver and a Slavonian Grebe were offshore with 30 Curlew, 19 Brent Geese, two Dunlin, a Grey Plover and the Whimbrel in the estuary. Elsewhere four Wheatear were onsite and a Raven flew over.
It goes from bad to worse, three Chiffchaff singing on site and the almost complete lack of wildfowl and waders were the only reminder that it is apparently Spring. Offshore there was a Great Northern Diver, c20 Razorbill, 12+ Great-crested Grebe, five Common Scoter and two male Eider. Elsewhere 33 Brent Geese and 12 Ringed Plover were in the Bight and three Raven flew east.
The dire Spring continues with the first White Wagtail of the year on the beach early morning the only migrant. Another year tick came in the form of two Stock Dove in the Railway Saltmarsh, with a third bird flying east through Greenland Lake late afternoon. In the estuary a count over high tide gave 970 Oystercatcher, 218 Curlew, 28 Turnstone, 24 Brent Geese, c20 Grey Plover, 10 Ringed Plover, nine Dunlin, five Teal, five Sanderling, two Knot and the wintering Whimbrel. Elsewhere a Red-throated Diver was offshore with three Eider and a Common Scoter, a Buzzard drifted over on a thermal, two Raven flew east and six Coot were on site.
Kestrel 24/03/07 © Lee Collins Pheasant 24/03/07 © Lee Collins
A Dartford Warbler in Greenland Lake was a surprise, possibly the wintering bird last seen in February, however following yesterday's excitement the only migrants were four Chiffchaff around the site. Single Great Northern and Red-throated Diver were offshore with 12 Common Scoter, 10 Great-crested Grebe, seven Razorbill, five Eider and c30 Kittiwake. Over high tide just 30 Dunlin were around the Bight with 150 Curlew, 23 Turnstone, 10 Ringed Plover, seven Knot and seven Sanderling crowded around Finger Point. Also in the estuary 20 Brent Geese and three Little Egret. Elsewhere the Main Pond held three Little Grebe with two Stonechat and a Reed Bunting by the Windmill.
Only one bit of news was received, but it was very welcome. At long last the first Wheatear of the year put in an appearance, probably the latest ever arrival date!
Tuesday 20th/Wednesday 21st:
No news was received.
A quiet day, the highlight being two Sandwich Tern feeding offshore. Elsewhere on site c720 Oystercatcher, 19 Grey and nine Ringed Plover, 10 Turnstone, five Eider, three Dunlin and single Sparrowhawk.
Many auks were still feeding offshore, with dozens also flying south, only one Guillemot was identified, the rest were Razorbill. A single Red-throated Diver flew south, with a larger unidentified sp. also south. Smaller numbers of Gannet & Kittiwake were also still feeding offshore, at times very close. High tide counts included c120 Curlew, 30+ Bar-tailed and a flyby Black-tailed Godwit. The only small waders present was one Ringed Plover! The only migrants were flyover Raven (two), Rook & Chaffinch.
Curlew 18/03/07 © Lee Collins
The second Sandwich Tern of the year was offshore feeding along with 40+ Razorbill, 20+ Kittiwake and 15 Gannet. Also on the sea a Great Northern and three Red-throated Diver, two Slavonian Grebe, 13 Common Scoter and six Eider. A Little Grebe just off Langstone Rock was an unusual record, two others were calling from the Main Pond. Migrants were limited to five Chiffchaff and two Goldcrest around the sallows, also on site the Cetti's Warbler called briefly from the flooded Entrance Bushes, the first record of this longstayer since February. Elsewhere the Whimbrel was in the estuary with just eight Teal and eight Knot, a male Peregrine circled the Golf Course and four Raven flew west.
Little Grebe 17/03/07 © Lee Collins
No news was received for today.
Eleven Great-crested Grebe were offshore with a single Slavonian Grebe, five Common Scoter and Red-throated Diver. In the estuary 45 Brent Geese and a Pale-bellied Brent were by the wreck with five Shelduck and five Little Egret on the saltmarsh. Elsewhere two Chiffchaff were in the Greenland Lake area with two Stonechat and two Chaffinch.
Offshore, three Slavonian Grebe showed well from the Dune Ridge along with 15 Great-crested Grebe, 12 Red-breasted Merganser, nine Eider, five Red-throated Diver and four Razorbill. In the Estuary, 44 Brent Goose and a Pale-bellied Brent showed with six Shelduck, four Redshank, three Sanderling, three Goldeneye , two Dunlin and two Little and a Slavonian Grebe. Elsewhere on site, 3 Chiffchaff were singing and two Little Grebe were also calling from the Main Pond. Seven Mallard were on site with five in the Main Pond two in the end pond.
No news was received for today.
A quiet day with 10 Common Scoter and two Great-crested Grebe offshore. Nineteen Red-breasted Merganser were in the estuary with 54 Curlew on the Railway Saltmarsh and 20 Brent Geese, including a colour ringed bird on Finger Point. Elsewhere a Water Rail called from the Main Pond, a Peregrine was overhead and a Sparrowhawk displayed over Greenland Lake.
Again no sign of any long awaited migrants on site. Offshore in the increasing winds there were 10 Kittiwake and two Fulmar south with six Great-crested Grebe, five Common Scoter, two Red-throated Diver, three Slavonian Grebe and an Eider on the sea. Another Slavonian Grebe was in the estuary with 59 Bar-tailed Godwit, 30+ Common Gull, 40 Dark-bellied Brent Geese, two Goldeneye, a Lapwing, a Great-crested Grebe and the Pale-bellied Brent. Elsewhere two Peregrine were seen during the day and a Chiffchaff was again around the Entrance Bushes.
A fine spring day was only let down by the absence of long distance migrants. Those birds on the move amounted to just five Meadow Pipit, a few Goldfinch and Chaffinch, two Jackdaw, the first of the year, and single Rook, Sparrowhawk and Buzzard. At least six Raven overhead during the day were notable. Over the high tide, wader numbers were again much reduced with 112 Dunlin, 42 Redshank, 17 Knot and 10 Ringed Plover. Also in the estuary there were 110 Dark-bellied Brent Geese, a single Pale-bellied Brent, 21 Red-breasted Merganser, a Slavonian Grebe and the Whimbrel. Offshore there were seven Red-throated Diver, 12 Great-crested and three Slavonian Grebe, five Common Scoter and three Eider. Elsewhere a Chiffchaff was in the Entrance Bushes, a Great-spotted Woodpecker was heard drumming and both Coot and Moorhen were present in unfamiliar places on the remaining flood water.
Skylark 10/03/07 © Lee Collins Stonechat (& Dunnock) 10/03/07 © Darren Maynard
The wintering Whimbrel was still in the estuary with 150 Dunlin, 116 Curlew, 42 Grey Plover, 13 Turnstone and three Goldeneye. Elsewhere, three Slavonian Grebe offshore, a Little Grebe on the Main Pond, a pair of Canada Geese on the floods near the visitor centre and a Sparrowhawk around the Entrance Bushes.
Sparrowhawk 9/3/07 © Darren Maynard
A single Pale-bellied Brent was still in the estuary with 88 Redshank and three Goldeneye. Elsewhere two Raven were overhead and two Slavonian Grebe were offshore.
The day's highlight was the first
Sandwich Tern of the year, arriving
with it were two ringed Pale-bellied Brent Geese which flew in off the sea early
morning, with a another bird later seen in the Bight. Waders appear to be moving
north also with numbers having dropped with the high tide count producing just
979 Oystercatcher, 613 Dunlin, 96 Grey Plover, 84
Redshank, 58 Bar-tailed Godwit, 54 Knot, 21 Ringed Plover,
eight Turnstone, three Curlew and one Sanderling. The warm
weather encouraged raptors onto the wing with at least two Buzzard over
the recording area, whilst both Sparrowhawk and Peregrine made an
appearance, two pairs of Raven also battled high over the reserve. Elsewhere the pick of the common passerines on site were 18
Linnet, eight Skylark, five Pied Wagtail, two Stonechat,
two Reed Bunting, two Goldfinch and two Meadow Pipit.
Over high tide the Railway Saltmarsh held 81 Brent Geese, 71 Bar-tailed Godwit, 51 Common Gull, 40 Redshank, 38 Curlew, two Lesser Black-backed Gull and a Greenshank. In the estuary the Great Northern Diver was still present along with 85 Shag, a Slavonian, two Great-crested and a Little Grebe, 15 Red-breasted Merganser and two Goldeneye. Elsewhere 20 Turnstone flew around Finger Point 24 Knot were in front of the hide.
Four Slavonian Grebe were offshore with 70 Common Gull and a Great Northern Diver in the estuary.
Despite at least one soul braving Warren Point in the foul weather today, there is no news to report. The Finger Point roost flooded over the high tide and most of the waders were either offsite or hidden on the northern side of Warren Point. The combination of high tides and southerly winds thankfully failed to cause anymore damage to the Dune Ridge.
Offshore this morning there were three Slavonian Grebe, three Eider and four Great-crested Grebe. These were joined by a further three Eider, eight Common Scoter, 53 Red-breasted Merganser and very large numbers of gulls in the evening. Five Great Northern Diver headed south early afternoon. Wader counts during the day consisted of 1407 Dunlin, 109 Grey Plover, 14 Knot, three Sanderling, 10 Turnstone, 23 Ringed Plover, 72 Bar-tailed Godwit, 96 Redshank, 152 Curlew and singles of Whimbrel, Greenshank and Black-tailed Godwit. Also present in the estuary were 96 Brent Goose, five of which were a family group of Pale-bellied Brent Goose, eight Shelduck, four Little Egret, one Grey Heron and a fourth Slavonian Grebe. Elsewhere c10 Snipe flew from the Main Pond first thing, five Reed Bunting were on site, and 10+ Linnet, four Skylark and three Meadow Pipit on Warren Point.
The only news received for today was of a Whimbrel on Finger point, with a Great Northern Diver and a drake Goldeneye just off Finger point during the evening tide.
The only news received today was of two Slavonian Grebe and two Eider offshore.
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