I was keen to get out early this morning and make the most of the time I had until 11am when I had to return home for fatherly duties. I left home at 5am where I drove over to Reculver in thick fog. Luckily as I arrived near the coast the fog cleared a while. I had a brief drive around and everywhere I pulled up I was greeted with a deafening dawn chorus, such a fantastic noise to hear. Birds I noted before driving over to the towers were 1 Little Owl, 2 Blackcap at Shuart, a year tick, 1 Common Buzzard, 2 Chiffchaff, 1 Jay, 2 Green Woodpecker, 1 Kestrel and 5 Red legged Partridge. Arriving at Reculver Towers as the sun was coming up I walked on down the seawall and then inland to Chambers Wall before walking back along the embankment and back along the seawall. The sun was out for nearly all the session but some mist persisted a little but it soon warmed up nicely. Birds noted were 2 Rock Pipit including 1 smart Scandinavian Rock Pipit which gave me the run around for a while until I eventually got a shot in the end, 6 Shelduck, 3 Curlew, 2 Pied Wagtail, 1 Green Woodpecker, 1 Little Owl, 25 Redshank, 3 Ringed Plover, c10 Linnet, 1 Pochard, 8 Oystercatcher, 10 Turnstone, 2 Snipe, 3 Little Egret and 1 Shoveler.
Scandinavian Rock Pipit
I have a bit of an obsession with photographing Wrens at the moment and this morning was no different as I found a confiding bird and spent c30 minutes with it trying to get a number of images, some turning out quite well, I shall post some more shots later in the week no doubt.
I suppose you could call it fate for if I had not been in the area I was in, I might of missed a new patch tick in the form of Spoonbill which flew high east at sea. Thankfully a call from Chris Hindle alerted me to the bird and I was able to scan the skies and pick it out as it flew through the area, not the best of views but patch gold and a most unexpected sighting for me. Skipping along I noted 1 Sand Martin, a year tick, 1 male Wheatear, 9 Reed Bunting, 6 Skylark, 1 Corn Bunting, 2 Yellowhammer showed quite well with me managing to grab my best efforts yet of these colourful birds, just a shame they always park with a stick in the way!
Walking back I had good chat with Barry Hunt, nice to see him back in the area and after getting back to the car and noting 1 Sand Martin flying over the cliffs I drove over to Shuart for some raptor watching. A productive 30 minutes had me seeing 6 Common Buzzard, 2 Kestrel, 2 Marsh Harrier, 1 Sparrowhawk as well as 2 Ring necked Parakeet and 1 singing Corn Bunting. A great session with the added bonus of a new patch bird and hopefully new arrivals in the next few days in the area ready to be found and photographed.