Wednesday 1 April 2020


No Red Kites today or yesterday. Today's best bird from the back garden, if you don't count Cattle Egrets, was probably a lone Knot which circled around, high up, before roosting with Curlew on Cockle Sands. Otherwise today's totals included 31 Cattle Egret, 6 Pale-bellied Brent Goose, 66+ Dark-bellied Brent Goose, 1 Meadow Pipit, 8+ Shelduck, 12 Red-breasted Merganser, 3+ Raven, 10 Canada Goose, 3 Great Crested Grebe, 2 Rook, 21 Turnstone, 1 Redshank, 9 Black-headed Gull, c15+ Common Gull, 22 Lesser Black-backed Gull, 3 Sandwich Tern, 170+ Curlew, 2 Mute Swan, 2 Chiffchaff, 2 Bar-tailed Godwit, 1+ Sparrowhawk, 2 Peregrine, 14+ Buzzard and 40+ Oystercatcher.
Yesterday I recorded 3 Teal, 1 Greenshank, 79 Dark-bellied Brent Goose, 7 Pale-bellied Brent Goose, 1 Mallard, 1 Great Spotted Woodpecker, 1 Redshank, 23 Black-headed Gull, 30+ Cattle Egret and 1 Meadow Pipit amongst other stuff.

One of two singing male Chiffchaffs at the back of our house.

Two Rooks went high east over the house this morning.

Thirty-one Cattle Egrets left their roost together at 0830 this morning. At dawn all birds are well-hidden deep in cover, then, as the sun starts to warm things up more and more appear as white dots in the foliage. They get more and more active, with individuals leaping from branch to branch, and undertaking short, looping flights before the entire flock explodes out of the roost and flies downriver to feed in the valley behind Cockwood. Just one Little Egret was in the roost with them this morning. The Littles are out of the roost generally much earlier and feeding on the river long before their more laid-back cousins set off.                      

Some Lesser Black-backed Gull movement today with 22 adults moving north upriver in ones, twos and threes.

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