I picked up Frank and Vivienne at around 6.30 and we arrived at the Old Lighthouse around 7.15, we were planning a quick seawatch then a look around the trapping area. Heading towards the power station wall there were several WHEATEAR and PIED WAGTAILS, whilst looking at these Vivienne drew my attention to a bird sat out on a bramble about 30 yards away it was a WRYNECK! what a great start to the day, I made a couple of calls and within 20 minutes or so a few people started to arrive.
We never got to the sea! instead, took sometime around the bushes. There were as ever loads of WHITETHROATS, which included 6 LESSER WHITETHROAT, there were several WILLOW WARBLER and YELLOW WAGTAILS were going over regularly, one flock of around 30 being the biggest while we were there. We also had two or three SPARROWHAWK around the trapping area. Moving on to the reserve we had a steady trickle of SAND MARTINS with a few SWALLOWS mixed in. The highlights here included a GREENSHANK and COMMON SAND. (Burrowe's), 1 SPOTTED REDSHANK (Dengemarsh), 2 HOBBIES and a calling WHIMBREL (near Christmas Dell), 3 GARGANEY and the GREAT WHITE EGRET (also Dengemarsh). When we left the Dengemarsh Hide a LESSER EMPEROR DRAGONFLY whizzed by, my first in this country. We stood at the ramp for a while hoping to glimpse Bearded Tits but unfortunately they were just heard a couple of times. Our last stop was just across the road at ARC pits, we settled down in Hanson hide. The flock of 60 or so GOLDEN PLOVER were there with loads of LAPWINGS on the islands, some of the Golden Plover looking particularly good in their summer get up! Also on the islands were 67 KNOT, 6 DUNLIN and the long staying female GOOSANDER. A longer look around produced 1 LITTLE GULL sitting with a small group of Black Headed, as we were thinking about leaving a PEREGRINE scattered the birds from the islands and gave chase to the Dunlin, it gave up quite quickly and drifted passed the hide, 70 species for the day was a satisfying total. On the way home we spotted a Hare just outside Lydd. All in all a really productive day with some great company, good birds and weather to match.
BREAKING NEWS!!- there maybe photos on this blog again in the near future!!!!!