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Friday, 5 December 2014

Friday 5/12

Not a birding day but at about 10 am went to the Chemist in Dymchurch and decided to go via Burmarsh and entered Dymchurch from the far end.
Just after leaving Burmarsh noticed a raptor in a ploughed field on the right hand side of the road as I got closer it took to the air and flew towards the Zoo.  For the first time since moving to Romney Marsh  I was watching a Ring Tailed Hen Harrier. One thought was a Rough Legged Buzzard but that was discounted immediately. .Further along the road the regular Buzzard was in its favourite bush/tree .
Rest of day spent at Maidstone Hospital

Thursday, 27 November 2014

Thursday 27/11

Not a birding day but first bird of the day was a Marsh Harrier followed by a Kestrel and then the usual garden birds. so the rest were birds from the car on way to Supermarkets A Mistle Thrush was seen again I have sen many in the last few weeks which is unusual. . This finished with the solitary Bewick Swan in a small flock of Mute Swans
Total only 16  


An afternoon of rain rain rain but a short drive out gave up the first Bewick Swan of the year amongst a small flock of Mute swans

Wednesday, 26 November 2014

weather 26/11

Mum now gone so cleaning up after the dog.
Late afternoon sent me to Lydd to view a house so did a little drive round the usual spots a Slavonion Grebe on ARC and Curlew outside Lydd Airport then on to Littlestone Golf Club to see if SE Owls have returned but no luck looking through the mist and rain.Species 26

Friday 21/11

Another poor day for the weather and Mum still with me.
Brent Geese were seen today as well as the usual bunch, Fieldfare numbers were down to just a few sightings so the bulk must have moved on
Species was 40.
Today had to take my Mums and Sisters dogs (3) there was a dead Harbour Porpoise on the beach where 2 of the dogs rolled in this stinking mess. The smell has stuck in my house and both Mum and Sister have gone home and  have left us with the smell. .  

Tuesday 18/11

Mum still with me so still viewing from the car only. Weather was poor but birding was good.
We thought we had lost the Little Owls but today they were in their usual place. Mistle Thrush and Redwing were present and 500 + Fieldfare.. Total species 41

Tuesday 11/11

A miserable day and Mum was down for a visit and at 93 hacking around Dungeness shingle was not on the cards.
A drive round the local area was pleasant found most of the usual but some were unusual for Mum like Great White Egret / Golden Plover and the unusal geese Snow and Barnacle.
A low total of 28.

Friday, 31 October 2014


After a call from Phil Sharpe we arranged a visit to Dungeness syarting at Hanson Hide at 10 am.
With all the usual ducks there was Little and Great Egret stunning drake Pintail and a female Red Crested Pochard.From there over the road hoping for Ring Ouzel which we missed but Stonechats both male and female.and Tree Sparrows on the feeders.Over to the new Lighthouse where a walk around saw nothing at all. Over tpo the sea where Gannets and Scoter were seen but it was also the start of seeing Brent Geese flying in . Over the day we must have seen in excess of 1000 birds migrating in.After a quick trip to Scotney which showed Golden Plover and the usual feral geese and the first Buzzard of the day. To Finish the day a trip back to Boulderwall Farm as Phil Hoped to see the Cattle Egret which again was dipped
The day as it was so warm we did see a few Butterflies but also a Clouded Yellow
Many thanks Phil for a great day out.
Species total 54

Monday, 27 October 2014

SUNDAY 26/10

A excellent day.
Another nice day and managed to get out for a few hours leaving home at 12.30.
Kestrel was the first suprise seen behind the house and then a further 8 birds in the next few hours.
Further into the marsh got a glimpse of something on a post and cruised up and stopped next to a Buzzard which had little intention of flying. Luckily no car came along so spent about 10 minutes admiring this classy bird before it moved on.
Scotney had the usual geese Barnacle/Snow/Canada and Grey Lag but no Golden Plover but a large flock of birds was flushed in the far distance which were Golden Plover.
Moving along a farmyard had about 30 stock Doves which gave stunning views.
Arrived at the reserve the track did not give up the large numbers of Stonechat which it has of late.
But over to Hanson hide which was empty unusual on a Sunday. A female Red Crested Pochard was located amongst the Coots.Great White and Little Egrets were all standing together which gave a nice example of size difference.. Pintail was seen which is early. . By now a few others had joined me in the hide which was lucky as a Kingfisher landed in front of the hide before moving right and standing on a reed stem this stayed about 8 minutes. As I was ready to leave a Wren was calling in the trees behind the hide on locating this got a brief glimpse of a Yellow Browed Warbler as it moved past.
Total species 47 but stunning views
All birders would of course know that the  reason I had such good views was because the Camera was at home.

Sunday, 19 October 2014


Another good day and managed some time out so decided on a quick scan round Scotney/Sea/Lighthouse Garden/Moat and Reserve track.
No little owls on road to Dungeness and arriving at Scotney all the Golden Plover were present but still no sign of American Golden Plover. MOved on to a quick sea watch with Gannet / Kittiwake and Sandwich Terns. Lighthouse garden gave little and the Moat even less . Reserve Track did at last give up a Female Ring Ouzel a handfull of Stonechats. And best of all on the track a stunning CLOUDED YELLOW Butterfly.
Total species 41

Thursday, 16 October 2014


What looked like another good migration day with Ring Ouzels being reported again I dipped .but managed to locate the Cattle Egret amongst the cattle at boulder Farm . But find of the day driving across the marshes saw a group of 40 + birds flying in front of the car after a few attempts to get up close they were all tree Sparrows a fine and rare sight now a days ..Total species was a miserable 26 but as I am having to be  driven by Val at the moment trips must fit round her schedule and not one that I would like , but great to get out for a short while anyway.


A day of possible migration with low cloud and drizzle. A little owl in the usual place but since then the hole in the roof has been fixed so will it be seen again?
Ringed Ouzels had been reported but I was unabe to locate any.
On Scotney I saw a large group of watchers to be told an American Golden Plover was present but difficult to locate in the very large flock of Golden Plover so again I dipped.also present was Ringed Plover Barnacle Geese and a few blue phased Snow geese.Total a lowely 32 species

Sunday, 14 September 2014

Sunday 14/9

A nice day dawned so decided to get out for the second time this week on the 10th went to visit friends on Sheppey and visited Oare on the way, with a very high tide Oare was spectacular with masses of birds on the marsh.
Leaving Home today decided to go to Dungeness via the back roads on the marsh behind our house. Within yards of leaving home noticed a bird sitting on the hedge top which turned out to be the above Whinchat. The first time I have ever managed to photo a Whinchat and the first sight of one this year.
Rest of the morning at Dungeness at Hanson Hide. Glossy Ibis was still present and an unusual visit of 2 Avocets on Cormorant Island There was a massive migration of Sand Martins. Total 34

Saturday, 6 September 2014

Saturday 6/9

Finding the impetuous to get out birding lately has been difficult even though I have been well enough to get out.
Today was different being September the morning starting warm but misty and with low clouds and having a couple of hours to spare decided to check for migrants. The reserve had plenty of Spotted Flycatchers and at least 2 Pied Flycatchers also of note was Glossy Ibis , Willow Warblers,Blacknecked Grebes and masses of Sand Martins. Did not go down to the point but apparently   Wryneck was present and what we have been seeing many of over the last fortnight is Humming Bird Hawk Moths  when I purchased this house was told they visited the garden and this week was honoured with a visit from a solitary Hawk Moth for a while.Little Owls still at Caldicote Lane.

Thursday, 29 May 2014


                                                                           Little Owl
Due to current medical condition keeping up with the blog has been difficult/

Again around Dungeness 42 species no sign of anything good on hayfield 3 not even a Garganey  .
Amount of Hobbies was impressive.and one buzzard of note,without the scope could not confirm if Honey Buzzard..Little Owl showed well as it does nearly every visit. Understand it has 3 youngster now.

Dungeness again  now 44 species. Bird of the day had to be a very showy Peregrine Falcon

25/5 Dungeness again but duerto poor weather conditions did all watching from the car.species 31. Still nothing new for the bird list 2014

29/5 As a change and Baby sitting grandchildren as it is half term took my grandson round NHGP.
His count was 3 common lizards and 10 slow worms some very young. As I found it very difficult walking around did not do much . The amount of Nightingales signing was excellent and joined by 2 Blackcap.
Green and Great Spotted Woodpecker with Cettis and Cuckoos all heard but not seen. Whitethroat numbers down since this was my Patch.
Now all lakes belong to one fishing company the amount of stands and the abhorant adjoining "Car Park" must be having a severe impact as there is no OUT OF SEASON Fishing. I can only assume it is the fishermen who are deficating all over the Park..
No sighting of any Voles was also a dissapointment.

Important local news 4 Bee-eaters have for best part of a week being flying around the area even reported near home but mostly at Dungeness. Which answers any questions of why have I been out so many times lately. As you have probably guessed I have dipped on every occasion.

Thursday, 22 May 2014

Tuesday 21/5

Another wonderful morning but after lunch managed to get Val to drive me out to the Kent end of Scotney. As is our luck before even getting to Dymchurch it started raining gentle at first but got harder later.
Remembered my scope for a change and managed Avocet and Little Ringed Plover to add to my list but unable to see Egyptian Goose.
Returning by a very wet Dengemarsh road the sight of close flying Hobbies (3) and a sky awash with swifts was worth getting wet for. Did not find any Marsh Harriers ( do they not like rain )
Species total 40.

Saturday, 17 May 2014


Another lovely day so decided to visit the whole of the reserve and persuaded David to join me. 9 am start  and watched the Little Owl at close range and of course the camera was in the boot. Straight onto the reserve hoping for Stilts or Flycatchers and a hopefull Purple Heron which was reported over Nickolls quarry flying towards Dungeness so a walk straight to the view mound.  All the usual species and at long last for me good views of the Bearded Tits A slow walk back had all the singing Cettis,Sedge and Reed Warblers and at the first hide as you enter the reserve a very obliging Lesser Whitethroat show very well just outside the hide.Of note was 2 Hobbies which were in sight most of the day. By one oclock I had had enough so we made our way to a Bistro for lunch . Late afternoon early evening did the walk from our house along the beach to Dymchurch and back not a single wader was sighted.
40 species was the total.

Thursday, 15 May 2014

Various Dates Catch up

 Wednesday 16/4 (I think)
Phil Sharp came down to Dungeness and kindly invited me to join him on a trip around the reserve.42 species including Swallow,Common Tern,Sedge and Willow Warbler and very nice was a Booming Bittern.
Many thanks to Phil for putting up with my moaning and constant complaining about my situation.

17/4 a short walk round NHGP and added Blackcap also Slow Worms  and Water Vole

21/4 a quick drive round Dungeness gave up 22 species    

24/4 another trip round Dungeness and saw 47 species including my first Little Tern of the year.

5/5 33 species including a lovely Barn Owl 

7/5 21 birds

9/5 36 birds including a stunning male Garganey on  ARC

11/5 30 birds including my first House Martin 

12/5 42 birds including Ringed Plover and a Turtle Dove

13/5 a day out with Frank a walk along the Canal Path by the Zoo where we got caught in a rain and hail stone storm as it stopped we then went to Dungeness reserve where the rain started and did not stop so went home. Happy to find 4 Yellow Wagtails near Haguelands.

15/5 today a quick trip to Larkfield and got David to join me at NHGP for a short walk. Nightingales were singing every where , which I miss living down on the marsh 


Friday, 28 March 2014

Thursday 27/3

An afternoon drive around Dungeness hoping for my first Sand Martin with no luck. Weather was blue sky but chilly. First nice find was a Little Owl sunbathing on the chicken factory roof on Caldicote lane .To Dengemarsh where a Peregrine swooped overhead which I initially thought was a Hobby. The Reserve track and viewing from the shop  gave up Tree Sparrow , Golden Eye and Smew ( red head) . A good look for  the Pink Foot Goose amongst the other geese but no luck looking into the low evening sun. Total 41.   

Tuesday, 18 March 2014

Monday 17/3

A visit to friends on the Isle of Sheppey of course meant driving though all the appropriate reserves on the way. Mating but not boxing Hares on the Emley track was a sight but camera in the boot. First Marsh frogs of 2014. 52 species including close up Buzzards and lots of Red Legged Partridge excellent to see such nice warm weather A large flock of Fieldfare was a late record. 

Sunday, 9 March 2014


A family holiday in Wales as my brother reached 60. A lovely house was rented near Cardigan and was opposite the Teifli wildlife reserve. Day 2 an Otter spent about half an hour fishing in the river in front of the house and was admired by all the family. Day 6 when a bit of left over meat was put out 2 Crows were joined by a Raven in the back garden. Most days Gooseander were present in the river and on a couple of occasions Red Kites flew over.
Due to my condition I was unable to take any walks so "birding" was difficult but managed a total of 52 species.    

Sunday, 2 February 2014

2/2/2014 KENT LIST GETS TO 100

Unlike the old days when 100 was passed on the1/1/.It has taken a month to get there this year. At 3.30 with the sun shining decided on a quick trip out arrived at Littlestone Golf Course parking on the main road within minutes a Short Eared Owl lifted out of the rough and flew 50 yards before flushing a further SEO. So 100 was reached. With luck like that decided on Dengemarsh road to see a Bittern but luck did not hold out and it only got dark. Must force myself out more.

Thursday, 23 January 2014


After many attempts for owls I managed Barn owl the day before yesterday. Yesterday went into Hythe shopping so dropped Val off and did a quick trip to the Groynes at Sandgate end and found 2 Purple Sandpipers avoiding the high tide and winds, on returning home a Barn Owl was hunting over the ditch at the end of my road no further than 200 metres from home. Like Buses.
Today another attempt for Black necked Grebe. Burrowes on the reserve was awash with birds including a huge number of widgeon , found goldeneye, pintail, gooseander, great white egret and also a stonechat Grebe eluded me. In the same field as the Bewick swans a very white buzzard was sitting and preening atop a bush. I tried to believe it was a Rough leg but just wistful thinking. Total 42  

Tuesday, 21 January 2014

Tuesday 21.1

After bad news from my consultant yesterday a bit if birding therapy was on the cards. Early doors and visibility was zero with thick fog and a temp of zero but went out anyway. Little or nothing in the fog until I arrived at the reserve where rain came down and with nothing on the board decided to move on. Arrived at Scotney in sunshine and blue skies and the water was flat calm. A Flock of Geese in flight as I arrived but did not get binoculars on them as they disappeared from view. Found the Long Tailed duck with ease as it looked great in the sunny flat conditions. None of the other specials were there only added a Reed Bunting. Later in the day one or possibly two Barn Owls at Walland Marsh as half a dozen Harriers went to roost all Marsh as far as I could see.
After sleeping on it am now happy that I did manage to see 2 Tundra Bean Goose at dusk on Walland Marsh

Friday, 10 January 2014

Friday 10/1

Returning home decided to go via Orlestone Forest as the weather was dry and sunny. Did not venture far as from the Car Park but managed Treecreeper, Nuthatch, Great Spot Woodpecker, Coal Tit and Goldcrest.
Tried for the Short Eared Owl on Littlestone Golf course with no luck
Total species 31

Wednesday, 8 January 2014


A couple of hours free and it was not raining so decided on a quick Sea Watch at 11 am.  With a low sun and a strong wind the Patch was awash with birds. Kittiwakes were present, guillemots sitting on the sea, Red throated Divers and Brent Geese flew by. A reported Caspian on the beach was not located by me. No Gannets were present.
There was a few Naval vessels sailing by, one was huge and it was not until it was nearly out of sight that I realised it was an Aircraft Carrier.
Returning home via the reserve managed to see the Black Throated Diver on the new diggings and alongside the road.
Only 23 species but 6 were new for 2014.

Thursday, 2 January 2014

Thursday 2/1/2014

Unlike yesterday today was wall to wall sunshine no wind and a reasonable temperature. Caldicott Lane gave up a flock of Bewick Swans arrived at the reserve to find a very busy car park . The hides were all full but did manage 5 Chiffchaff 3 Goosander 2 Red Head Smew and Pintail over to Arc where there was 2 more Smew 5 Goldeneye and surprise surprise a pair of Red Crested Pochard outside the hide the male looking stunning in the sunshine. Total species 44.


After opening a bottle of 1966 vintage port on New Years Eve with friends awoke with a headache which lasted all day along with gale force winds and driving rain which also lasted all day. Not a great birding day.  Managed a couple of hours in the rain in the afternoon to get a total of 29. A small flock of Yellowhammers was a welcome sight. Dungeness gave Little and Great White Egret and a Marsh Harrier  .