Monday 16th November 2020

The Dartford Warbler was calling as I made my way down to the beach. The sea was quiet again although an adult winter Sandwich Tern heading west was the first I’ve seen for a few weeks. A Greenshank flew over calling and an adult Mediterranean Gull also headed west scanning the shoreline as it went. I wandered around the wet margins south of the NP hide and flushed seven Snipe but no sign of their smaller relative.

A pair of Ravens were honking as I made my way to the hides. Two men with rifles were hiding behind artificial fences and although I didn’t hear them fire their guns there was very little bird life on B Water. The lagoon from DL’O was completely flooded with the extremely high spring tide spilling over the sea wall, topping up the brackish water levels. There were two Spoonbill asleep on the lagoon and a tightly grouped flock of six Avocet were standing on a tiny exposed area of mud.  I heard one of the Spotted Redshank calling but couldn’t locate it.

One of the Peregrines was sat on the shingle spit and from the point I could see a huge roosting flock of waders. They were very distant and appeared to be mainly Dunlin, perhaps 400 with around 50 Grey Plover, similar numbers of Ringed Plover and Curlew and at a least one Knot. Five Rock Pipits were feeding on the wet margins in front of the Wardens Hut.  

There were plenty of ducks on the high tide in front of the sailing club and most of the males were now in full breeding plumage and many were starting to display to their females.

Pintail photo by Ian Williamson

A stop at the Reedy Ditch produced a Treecreeper and a Coal Tit. They were with Long-tailed Tits and Goldcrests in the Oaks just north of the ditch, both are patch ticks.   

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