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Rye Harbour

Largely the usual suspects over the last few days, with up to two spoonbill on Harbour Farm, marsh harrierblack-tailed godwit and great white egret at Castle Water, up to 1500 golden plover on the Beach Reserve and lots and lots of ducks everywhere! Highlights were a spotted redshank on Harbour Farm and a  short-eared owl over Ternery Pool on the 8th and merlin over Harbour Farm today. 


From the Clifftop and East Guldeford Levels

An early visit to the Levels this morning, as rain forecast later, finally produced  a decent count of Corn Buntings-65, but Tree Sparrows were down to 40. Otherwise the morning was notable for feral waterfowl-Black Swan and Bar-headed Goose !

In the afternoon, 6 Razorbills, 4 Kittiwakes and a Black-throated Diver were on show from the clifftop


Rye Harbour

Highlight today were three spoonbill, with two on Ternery Pool and one on the new saltmarsh briefly. Apart from that, plenty of wildfowl, though the presence of quartering marsh harrier at both Castle Water (female) and Harbour Farm (male) precluded accurate counts due to the constant panic! Wigeon numbered around 500, an incomplete count of gadwall at least 200 (a good count for the reserve) and there were perhaps 100 pochard on Long Pit, while small numbers of pintail were present on Flat Beach and Harbour Farm and at least two great white egret were at Castle Water. Also at Castle Water, at least eight black-tailed godwit, three ruff (though Barry had nine here recently) and 10 or 20 twenty fieldfare. Golden plover numbers were quite low today, though up to 2500 have been present over the last few days.


The Potato Walk

With yesterday being a rainy write-off, and today looking the same, I will go back two days to Friday, when a nice bit of weather forecasting enabled Slow but Sure to enjoy one of our regular walks. Named after an act of generosity by one of the local farmers -"take as many as you want ", -this circular walk starts at Dennes Lane, Lydd and is about 7 miles.

Almost immediately we picked up some promising looking geese flying towards us-these  proved to be 78 Whitefronts, while near Newlands Farm were 4 Bewicks Swans, and the first of at least two Great White Egrets. We had no luck with Hen Harriers, but did see Peregrine, Sparrowhawk and several Buzzards, smaller birds were c400 Fieldfares feasting  on the abundant hawthorn berries, and ten or so each of Tree Sparrow and Corn Bunting. Two late Common Darters were buzzing around the buildings at Little Scotney. At Scotney Gravel Pits there were 2 Green Sandpipers near the farm buildings-we didn't have time to go to the western pits, but the two Whoopers were stll there.


From the Clifftop

It's been pretty wild on the clifftop of late, gales and lashing rain making seawatching through the window the best option. I usually don't expect to see much when it's very windy, but there was enough to hold my interest yesterday morning. 65 Gannets flew W , and a nice movement of 48 Kittiwakes likewise, but otherwise just the basic species-Red Throated Divers [15], Fulmars [3],  the usual intrepid  GBB Gulls and just two auks.

The weather cleared in the afternoon so I paid a visit to East Guldeford Levels, no time for the full walk but the remote Tree Sparrow ditchside reeds  held a record 100 birds, on the soggy fields were 250 Carrion Crows, 80 Skylarks and 6 Snipe