Wednesday, 20 March 2019

March 20th
We had a productive, early spring morning's birdwatch today. We parked one car at Shuart and then drove to Reculver and walked back to Shuart. There appeared to have been a small overnight arrival of migrants as we recorded 7 Wheatears, 5 males and 2 females on the seawall, 1 singing Blackcap at Shuart (123rd), 1 Black Redstart at the Stables and 14 Chiffchaffs.
Other birds we saw included 34 Fieldfares flying W, 20 Dark-bellied Brent Geese, 13 Linnets, 2 Goldfinches, 1 Red-breasted Merganser W, 1 Gannet E, 1 Pied Wagtail, 3 alba Wagtails W, 14 Mallard, 19 Redshank, 1 Kingfisher, 1 Little Grebe, 2 Red-throated Divers, 3 Rock Pipits, 63 Oystercatchers, 48 Meadow Pipits, 2 Great Crested Grebes and 1 immature male Eider. We also recorded a flock of 80 Corn Buntings, 38 Turnstone, 10 Ringed Plovers, 30 Common Scoter, 19 Golden Plovers, 4 Shelduck, 1 Avocet flying W at Coldharbour, 1 Marsh Harrier, 1 Stonechat, 6 Grey Plovers, 2 Lapwings, 13 Sanderling, 1 Common Buzzard, 3 Great Spotted Woodpeckers, 3 Green Woodpeckers, 2 Jays, 3 Ring-necked Parakeets, 4 Cetti's Warblers, 11 Curlew, 1 Little Egret, 5 Mute Swans and 2 Goldcrests.

Male Wheatear on the seawall

Tuesday, 19 March 2019

March 19th
Before Matt met us at Reculver this morning he had a walk at Shuart where he saw 1 Brambling W, 1 Siskin W, 10 Chaffinches W, 45 Redwings W, 1 Chiffchaff and 1 Common Buzzard.
At Reculver we walked along the seawall to Coldharbour and counted 2 Firecrests, 3 Chiffchaffs, 4 Rock Pipits, 4 alba Wagtails W, 14 Mallard, 1 Little Egret, 8 Shelduck, 26 Dark-bellied Brent Geese, 1 immature male Eider, 2 Pied Wagtails, 16 Common Scoter E, 2 Red-breasted Mergansers W, 5 Redshank, 22 Oystercatchers, 6 Turnstone, 6 Teal, 70 Corn Buntings, 3 Stonechats, 4 Ringed Plovers, 5 "continental" Song Thrushes, 1 Grey Heron, 2 Kestrels, 1 Snipe, 1 Lesser Black-backed Gull, 1 Curlew, 1 Water Rail, 1 Great Crested Grebe and 4 Mute Swans.
Later in the morning a Red Kite (122nd) flew over Brook Farm and on past Bishopstone and in the afteroon a Raven flew over our garden calling.

Monday, 18 March 2019

March 18th
On a bright morning with a moderate NW wind blowing we arrived at the Towers at 0620 and had a two hour seawatch. It was relatively quiet but we did count 33 Lesser Black-backed Gulls W, 134 Meadow Pipits W, 2 Rock Pipits, 2 Great Crested Grebes, 16 Gannets E, 25 Red-throated Divers E, 6 alba Wagtails W, 5 Shelduck, 1 Dark-bellied Brent Goose, 1 Curlew, 6 Oystercatchers, 1 Kestrel W out at sea, 1 Fulmar W, 1 Redshank and 11 Great Black-backed Gulls.

Third winter Lesser Black-backed Gull
After this Matt walked from Chamber's Wall to Coldharbour and Plumpudding and back via the railway embankment. He saw 4 Chiffchaffs, 1 Goldcrest, 3 alba Wagtails W, 60 Meadow Pipits W, 9 Grey Plovers, 4 Dunlin, 30 Dark-bellied Brent Geese,  40 Common Scoter,  1 Marsh Harrier, 7 Curlew, 100 Oystercatchers, 2 Kittiwakes E, 3 Lesser Black-backed Gulls W, 1 Rock Pipit, 2 Shelduck, 5 Lapwings, 2 Long-tailed Tits, 5 Fieldfare and 1 Cetti's Warbler.
It was a pleasant sunny afternoon as we walked from Reculver to Wantsum outflow. Birds we saw included 1 Grey Heron, 1 Little Grebe, 1 male Wheatear (121st), 1 immature male Eider, 1 Short-eared Owl, 4 Oystercatchers, 8 Mallard, 1 Lesser Black-backed Gull, 2 Shelduck, 2 Redshank, 8 Corn Buntings, 1 Little Egret, 11 Turnstone and 2 Dark-bellied Brent Geese.

Immature male Eider

Sunday, 17 March 2019

March 17th
At last a reasonable morning!
Matt arrived at the Towers at 0630 and spent an hour seawatching and recorded the following flying west: 58 Dark-bellied Brent Geese, 7 Red-throated Divers, 8 Gannets, 55 Black-headed Gulls, 62 Meadow Pipits, 5 alba Wagtails, 2 adult Mediterranean Gulls, 1 Great Skua (118th), 1 Avocet (119th), 9 Lesser Black-backed Gulls and 1 Rock Pipit.
He then met us at Shuart and we walked to Brooksend and Plumpudding before returning to Shuart. We counted 4 Green Woodpeckers, 5 Ring-necked Parakeets, 1 Great Spotted Woodpecker, 17 Mute Swans, 3 Chiffchaffs, 3 Corn Buntings, 1 Greylag Goose, 4 Red-legged Partridges, 36 Goldfinches, 20 Chaffinches, 4 Common Buzzards, 1 Goldcrest, 2 Mistle Thrushes, 37 Redwings W, 1 Brambling W (120th) and 5 Greenfinches. From Brooksend onwards we saw 5 Grey Herons, 21 Pied Wagtails, 2 White Wagtails, 3 Jays, 7 Mallard, 7 Tufted Duck, 1 Shoveler, 3 Cetti's Warblers, 9 Coot, 2 Marsh Harriers, 16 Skylarks, 28 Turnstone, 18 Redshank and 2 Peregrines hunting over the Marsh.

Redshank and Turnstone roosting on the beach at Plumpudding

Marc Heath was also out this morning and between 0600 and 1000 and recorded 155 Meadow Pipits W, 7 Shelduck, 1 Little Grebe, 4 Redshank, 5 adult Mediterranean Gulls W, 1 Gannet, 6 Pied Wagtails, 1 White Wagtail, 8 Reed Buntings, 31 Dark-bellied Brent Geese, 17 Turnstone, 2 Chiffchaffs, 7 Golden Plovers, 1 singing Stonechat, 3 Ringed Plovers, 2 Great Skuas W, 1 Snow Bunting, 1 Greylag Goose, 1 Red-throated Diver, 35 Common Scoter, 4 Skylarks, 2 Kingfishers, 1 Marsh Harrier, 2 red-headed Goosanders W, 1 Woodcock in off, 1 Peregrine and 30 Corn Buntings.

2 red-headed Goosanders - Marc Heath

Woodcock in off the sea - Marc Heath

Snow Bunting - Marc Heath

Saturday, 16 March 2019

March 16th
Hopefully there will only be another couple of days of this very windy weather before high pressure builds again. This morning we walked around the Shuart area with a bit of shelter from the wind and recorded 2 Goldfinches, 2 Great Spotted Woodpeckers, 4 Ring-necked Parakeets, 8 Mute Swans, 24 Chaffinches, 1 Common Buzzard, 4 Greenfinches, 52 Redwings moving west through the trees, 1 singing Chiffchaff, 3 Green Woodpeckers, 2 Marsh Harriers, 2 Red-legged Partridges and 1 Cetti's Warbler.
On our drive home, in the dyke at Chamber's Wall, we saw a pair of Mallard in hot pusuit of a mink and overhead a Peregrine flying towards Wagtail Farm.

Friday, 15 March 2019

March 15th
As we had to stay in this morning while our gas fire was replaced we didn't get to a very windy but surprisingly mild Reculver until after lunch. We walked from Reculver along the seawall in unpleasant conditions with few birds to be seen. All we counted was 10 Dark-bellied Brent Geese, 3 Mute Swans, 2 Oystercatchers, 2 Mallard, 2 Ringed Plovers, 18 Cormorants, 1 Little Egret, 2 Tufted Duck and 1 Little Egret.

Thursday, 14 March 2019

March 14th
The weather was marginally better this morning even though there was a strong westerly wind still blowing but the rain stopped for a while and sun even came out for five minutes. We walked inland from Reculver to find some shelter and recorded 4 Dark-bellied Brent Geese, 6 Mallard, 1 Moorhen, 1 Green Woodpecker, 1 alba Wagtail flying W, 3 Chiffchaffs, 2 Jays, 14 Redwings W, 85 Fieldfares W, 1 Cetti's Warbler, 2 Tufted Duck, 13 Teal, 2 Song Thrushes and 1 female Sparrowhawk.