Birds: August 2014
Redstart and 2 Hobbies were recorded this morning, but the highlight was a Honey-buzzard over HQ at 1045.
A bright, breezy day with some fast-moving showers was very much the same as yesterday until the discovery of a Wryneck on New Downs, a search for which turned up 3 Green Sandpipers and a second Spotted Flycatcher for the day.
Although the morning was a good deal warmer than the last week or so it was resolutely overcast with drizzle and initially with poor visibility. Still, a few bits and pieces included a Cuckoo, 6 Whinchats, a Spotted Flycatcher and a Little Ringed Plover on the scrape, though passerines were generally hard to see in the wind-blown bushes.
Bright with a frisky easterly breeze the morning featured a Redstart in the gullies, a Pied Flycatcher in the Elms, 2 Spotted Flycatchers and 15 Wheatears and 4 Whinchats along the shore, while at least 3 Arctic Skuas passed by out at sea .
A few puddle of brightness out at sea were soon consumed by gathering cloud and, rather like yesterday, light rain began to fall at 9. The 2 Cuckoos were still present, 90 Meadow Pipits erupted from Restharrow Dunes and Dicksons Corner and a flock of 35-40 warblers skipped through the gullies; mostly Willows and Whitethroats.
It’s August Fair time! The 24th was mostly lovely and sunny and birds included 4 Spotted Flycatchers and a notable (for these days) 17 Yellow Wagtails. However, this morning allowed just under three hours birding before the rain arrived, during which we were treated to a Nightingale in St.George’s bushes, 5-600 House Martins along the shore, 4 Yellow Wagtails and 2 Cuckoos.
Although the forecast rain failed to materialise, the morning was overcast and promising, but apart from a Cuckoo in the gullies things were little changed, with 10 Whinchats near the sailing club, the Spotted Flycatcher and 32 Willow Warblers, though a notable 1,000 Linnets had gathered on freshly-ploughed ground on Worth.
As another chilly start soon warmed up, so did the birding, with 20 Whinchats and 11 Wheatears at the sailing club. Otherwise, one Spotted Flycatcher remained, the seafront rooftops were again smothered with House Martins and about 25 Willow Warblers were flitting about.20th2 Redstarts were present this morning as 450 House Martins swirled about the shore, briefly upset by a hunting Sparrowhawk, a Greenshank and 3 Whimbrel flew N and 60 Ringed Plovers were clustered together on the beach, while in Pegwell the Glossy Ibis was joined by a Spoonbill. .
Despite another chilly start in the continuing WNW breeze 13 Whinchats remained, mainly around the sailing club, 2 Spotted Flycatchers were present, a Redstart was in the Elms, about 26 Willow Warblers were mostly in the relative shelter of the gullies and 3 Yellow Wagtails flew N.
Since the last update, the Wheatear count rose to 14 on the 13th, but it stayed rather breezy and migrants remained at a trickle until the 16th when a Glossy Ibis appeared in pegwell and a Quail was heard calling from a ditch near the maize field used for ringing, followed by an arrival of 35 Willow Warblers the next day.
This morning’s perambulations in rather autumnal conditions resulted in totals of 6 Wheatears and 22 Whinchats, mainly between the sailing club and the golf course, while about 30 Willow Warblers were scattered about and 3 Ravens flew along the shore.
A few bits and pieces were scattered about on an increasingly blustery morning, including our first Spotted Flycatcher of autumn (only the second of the year), 8 Whinchats and 10 Wheatears near the sailing club and about 15 Willow Warblers.
Over the weekend 80 Redshanks roosted at Backsand on the 9th and on a fractious 10th with some heavy spells of rain around 50 Swifts and an Arctic Skua flew by low over the sea, but there was little else of interest. This morning was also very quiet, with not much more than 3 Black-tailed Godwits in Pegwell of note.
A bit like two days ago, there was time for a walk around part of the Estate before the rain arrived, though it served largely to emphasise that the autumn has yet to get going. Small numbers of Willow Warblers were apparent and a Hobby dashed through the Whitehouse, but it was otherwise pretty quiet.
143 Sedge Warblers and 40 Reeds were caught in the maize first thing, at least 5 Lesser Whitethroats were on the Estate and, surprise of surprises, 2 juvenile Tawny Owls turned up in the Elms.
In a fairly brief walk around the shore and Restharrow area before the rain set in 3 Green Sandpipers were calling noisily overhead, 8 Whimbrel flew in off the sea, 2 Common Sandpipers were on the beach and around 60 Swifts flew over.
6 Wheatears (minus Barry White) and 2 Whinchats were in the usual place near the sailing club, with another 5 Wheatears on Prince’s, and 4 Avocets flew S over the scrape. The ringers achieved a notable catch of 221 Sedge and 51 Reed Warblers in the maize, along with the second Grasshopper Warbler of the month so far.
The chat count along the shore has risen to 4 Whinchats and 8 Wheatears, including the white one, but apart from a Green Sandpiper on the scrape and 2 overflying Whimbrel it was all a bit pedestrian.
The new month started warm and sunny, with a light SW breeze. 5 Wheatears and 2 Whinchats were present along the shore, including the leucistic bird, a Kestrel flew S out at sea and a small arrival of 18 Willow Warblers was evident.