Our Sunday monthly group yesterday met at Greenlands Farm and walked towards Brands Bay. During our 3 hour walk we had Meadow Pipits calling and flying over us in in small groups. Swallows were with just a few House Martins amongst them.
We hadn't walked far, though we could see the Bay, when a Great White Egret flew up from the bay and across to Little Sea, then Liz spotted the juvenile Marsh Harrier behind us heading towards Ballard Down, then she found a distant bird of prey over Goathorn, which through the scope was confirmed by Nick as a Peregrine. What a start to our walk!
Walking to the hide a male Stonechat perched up for us to admire, soon we were sat looking through the waders pushed in by the rising tide. There were good numbers of Black-tailed Godwit interspersed with Redshanks. Four Knot flew in, and a Ringed Plover flew out, Nick found four more Knot and we had a brief view of a juvenile Sanderling. Other waders included Curlew, Dunlin, Lapwing and Oystercatchers plus a single Bar-tailed Godwit. Our first Wigeon of the Autumn were busy feeding alongside Teal.
Moving towards Little Sea a Green Woodpecker flew across the heath and a Common Lizard moved too quickly into cover for most of the group to see. Common Darters were now really warmed up and were "common", later we found a few Migrant Hawkers, but not many butterflies despite the warmth. Looking through the high tide Egret roost we counted 74 Little Egrets and one Great White Egret, also a few Grey Herons and Cormorants. Below is a digiscoped shot of the Great White in the roost.
We found a sheltered warm spot in the wooded area and had at least three Spotted Flycatchers, Goldcrests and a Firecrest, Coal, Blue and Great Tits and lots of Chiffchaffs, just a few Willow Warblers. We spent a while here hoping for a glimpse of another bird we saw all too briefly but struck us that it could've been a Red-breasted Flycatcher, but despite our looking we never saw this bird again.
This afternoon we were gardening when we found an amazing spider, a splendid female Wasp Spider. We were so pleased to find one in our garden. On the left hand side is the underside and on the right hand side is the top of the spider.
|All photographs are copyright of Nick Hull|