Wednesday, 18 October 2017

Dungeness record Egret Roost Count!

08.00-09.00 from the sea watch hide,
Common Scoter: 13 up
Gannet: 281 up
Mediterranean Gull: 39 up
Sandwich Tern: 1 down
Razorbill: 4 down
Auk sp: 7 down
Visible migration from The Moat saw c3,000 Chaffinches, c1,000 Goldfinches smaller numbers of Brambling, Redpolls, Siskin, Meadow Pipits and Swallows, a House Martin, and a handful of Skylarks moving over but still derisory numbers of Thrushes. 
Late morning a Willow Warbler and 2 Continental Coal Tits literally dropped into the Lighthouse Garden to join at least 3 Firecrests and a couple of Goldcrests. Another Continental Coal Tit dropped into The Moat. There were still at least 3 Dartford Warblers around today.
 Continental Coal Tit

 Late Willow Warbler

Brent Geese passing the fishing boats this afternoon
15.00-16.00 from the fishing boats:
Brent Goose: 23 down
Common Scoter: 2 up
Great-crested Grebe: 2 around
Gannet: 59 down
Cormorant: 7 around
Turnstone: 2 on beach
Mediterranean Gull: 14 around
Kittiwake: 9 down
Sandwich Tern: 1 down
Razorbill: 8 down
Auk sp: 3 down
Grey seal: 1
Harbour Porpoise: 2
Early evening in the company of Steve G, AKA ( at the ARC Egret roost where a Dungeness record breaking 20 Great White Egrets, a Cattle Egret and 26 Little egrets came into roost, a Merlin was also seen there.

Tuesday, 17 October 2017


The sun at around 09.00 toady at Dungeness
07.35-08.35 from the fishing boats:
Great-crested Grebe: 4 around
Gannet: 251 down
Grey Heron: 1 out
Arctic Skua: 1 around
Mediterranean Gull: 4 around
Kittiwake: 2 down
Sandwich Tern: 5 around
Common Tern: 1 around
Guillemot: 9 down
Razorbill: 15 Down
Auk sp: 61 down
Swallow: 28 out
Redpolls in The Moat
A generally quiet day around Dungeness today, but still some nice birds to see with a little perseverance. Around The Point Redpolls, Siskins, Reed Buntings and a Rock Pipit overhead early morning, around the bushes a minimum of 6 Firecrests, plenty of Goldcrests, at least 3 Dartford Warblers, 4+ Black Redstarts, Stonechats and a Merlin all of note.
On the reserve 17 Great White Egrets, a Cattle Egret, a Little Stint and the usual wildfowl.
On the ARC late afternoon I couldn't find the Red-necked Grebe but it may well still be around. In the Willow Trail several Water Rails were squealing, Cetti's Warblers were very vocal, lots of Goldcrests flitting around and a couple more Firecrests. 
1 of at least 3 Dartford Warblers around today
At least 8 Stonechats around today

Monday, 16 October 2017

Long-tailed Shrike in Belgium!

 A very slow sea watch this morning was brought to an abrupt end by a call from DW asking if I wanted to join him LG and GH on a twitch to Het Zwin, Knocke, Belgium to see a Long-tailed Shrike. Needless to say I didn't need to be asked twice. We left around 10.30 A.M. and about 2.0 PM arrived on site, after driving past a field with 4 White Storks. The Shrike was showing almost immediately though mostly a little to distant for good images, but gave excellent scope views.
It was an excellent trip and big thank you to Gill for doing the driving and finding the Fritterie on the way home.
It's brilliant that we can see birds in France, Belgium and Holland with less hassle than going to Norfolk and Yorkshire and on superb clean roads, unlike our pot holed, litter strewn, over crowded road system.
 Long-tailed Shrike

Saturday, 14 October 2017

Radde's Warbler!

A pleasant stroll around The point and Desert this morning with a few birds moving overhead, c300 Goldfinches, 20+ Siskin, 10+ Redpoll, 38 Swallows moved over, in and around the bushes a few Goldcrests, Chiffchaffs and Reed Buntings, 7 Stonechats, 3 Wheatears and a Marsh Harrier.
Mid morning news of a Radde's Warbler found by Dave Bunney in his garden which was very elusive and rarely showed long enough or kept still enough to get good images of. Many thanks to Dave Bunney and his family for putting the news out and being so welcoming.
 Radde's Warbler
Late afternoon a Red-backed Shrike was reported on the reserve near the boardwalk. The bird was still present when I arrived c200 mts out from the boardwalk so no images.
This evening a Cattle Egret was a surprise coming into the Egret roost with 16 Great White Egrets and 24 Little Egrets, also there a Merlin, a Peregrine and c500 Oystercatchers flew into Burrowes to roost.   

Friday, 13 October 2017

Dartford Warblers!

A gloomy hour 07.30-08.30 this morning at the sea watch hide with AJG & S.O:
Brent Goose: 14 down
Common Scoter:  3 up
Red-breasted Merganser: 2 down
Sooty Shearwater: 2 down
Gannet: 700+ down
Great Skua: 1 down
Mediterranean Gull: 2 around
Sandwich Tern: 14 around
Razorbill: 15 down
Guillemot: 3 down
Auk sp: 4 down   3 up
I spent the rest of the morning walking around the point and desert with Sean O seeing a few each of Goldcrests and Chiffchaffs, 3 Wheatears, c250 Goldfinches over along with flyover Siskins and Redpolls, around midday by the station gorse we found 2 Dartford Warblers in the company of 4 Stonechats. As the the weather was so gloomy I had left my camera in my car, by the time I had fetched it both the Dartford Warblers had melted away into the Broome.
This afternoon 14.00-16.00 from the fishing boats:
 Great-crested Grebe: 3 around
Gannet: 464 down
Turnstone: 6 around
Great Skua: 4 down
Arctic Skua: 3 around
Mediterranean Gull: 5 around
Kittiwake: 14 down
Sandwich tern: c10 around
Common Tern: 1 around
Harbour Porpoise: 5
Grey Seal: 1
Late afternoon at Galloways 4 Stonechats were the only notable birds.

Thursday, 12 October 2017

Arctic Skua's at the Fishing Boats!

 Stonechat at the lighthouse
At The Point this morning a small movement of finches which petered out quickly, mainly Goldfinches with a few Siskins, Redpolls, Brambling and Tree Sparrows. In the lighthouse garden no sign of the Yellow-browed Warbler but 5+ Chichaffs, a couple of Goldcrests, a Black Redstart and Stonechat nearby. A walk around The Desert was very poor avian wise with a few Swallow and a couple of Green Woodpeckers being the highlight.
 Black Redstart at the Lighthouse
At a wind swept Scotney the usual feral geese, a Ruff among the many Lapwing, 2 Redshanks around the edge of the lake and c50 Wigeon were the highlights.
 Arctic Skuas showing well again at the fishing boats
14.00-16.00 from the fishing boats:
Brent Goose: 4 down
Common Scoter: 20 up
Great-crested Grebe: 5 around
Gannet: c100 around
Cormorant: 114 down   37 up
Turnstone: 11 around
Arctic Skua: 4 around
Mediterranean Gull: 3 down
Kittiwake: 1 down
Razorbill: 5 up      2 on
Auk sp: 7 up  5 down
Swallow: 5 out
Grey Seal: 1
Harbour Porpoise: 3+
 Sandwich Tern turning the tables on an Arctic Skua
  Arctic Skua at the fishing boats
  Common Tern at the fishing boats
Late afternoon at the ARC again very quiet though the Red-necked Grebe was just about visible at the far end of the lake.
From Dennis's at least 7 Great White Egrets including the Somerset individual AAH hatched this year.
Great White Egret from Dennis's 

Wednesday, 11 October 2017

Sooty's and Skuas!

A drizzly windy morning starting at the Sea watch hide.
07.10-08.40 with AJG who kindly collated the numbers:
Wigeon: 2 down
Common Scoter: 3 down
Gannet: 1,274 down and 306 around
Great Skua: 5 down
Arctic Skua: 2 down
Mediterranean Gull: 1 down
G B B Gull 120/hour passing down
Kittiwake: 1 down
Sandwich Tern 12 dow
Razorbill 6 down
Auk sp 3 down
The ARC was again very quiet with the islands looking very bare, I couldn't even find the Red-necked Grebe though it was still present per EH.
A very windswept Scotney found just the usual feral geese and 32 Curlews.
 At the fishing boats this afternoon the Arctic Skuas were showing very well
14.10-17.00 from the fishing boats with PH,EH, MH,LG et al:
Brent Goose: 5 down
Great-crested Grebe: 4 around
Sooty Shearwater: 4 down
Shearwater sp 4 down (probably Manx)
Gannet: 1,634 down
Turnstone: 6 around
Arctic Skua: 5 around
Yellow-legged Gull: 1 ad around
Kittiwake: 12 down
Sandwich Tern: 61 down + 30 feeding off shore
Common Tern: 1 around
Razorbill: 17 down
Auk sp: 4 down      2 up

 Common Tern at the fishing boats this afternoon
 Sandwich Tern at the fishing boats this afternoon
  Yellow-legged Gull at the fishing boats this afternoon
Webb's Wainscot

Tuesday, 10 October 2017

Yellow-browed Warbler!

The Desert was quiet this morning with a few Swallows and House Martins over, also some Siskins, Redpolls and Reed Buntings, a few Meadow Pipits were in the Broome and a Hare was flushed.
In the lighthouse garden a Yellow-browed Warbler was found among the Chiffchaffs by Mark Varley, the bird showed well on occasions for most of the morning at least. 
 Yellow-browed Warbler

  Yellow-browed Warbler

  Yellow-browed Warbler

 Brambling in a private Dungeness garden today
Juvenile Arctic Skua at the fishing boats this afternoon
Razorbills at the fishing boats this afternoon
14.00-16.00 from the fishing boats with AJG:
Brent Goose: 34 down   1 in
Wigeon: 2 down
Common Scoter: 13 up
Red-throated diver: 1 down
Great-crested Grebe: 1 around
Gannet: 231 down
Cormorant: 91 down     27 up
Turnstone: 4 around
Arctic Skua: 3 around
Mediterranean Gull: 2 down   Ad + 3rd cal year
Razorbill: 15 down
Guillemot: 1 down
Auk sp: 3 down
Swallow: 2 out
Harbour Porpoise: 3+
 Sandwich Terns at the fishing boats this afternoon
Late afternoon at the ARC from Hanson was very quiet with only the Red-necked Grebe of note.
 Both forms of Barred Red in the MV today
Clancy's Rustic from last night