Bee Identification weekend with Steven Falk at Rye Harbour, Sussex July 1st and 2nd 2017
An opportunity to learn how to record and critically identify bees of all sorts (concentrating on non-Bumblebees) with Steven Falk, author of the new 'Field Guide to Bees of Britain and Northern Ireland' and also a top expert on invertebrate conservation and pollinators generally. The course will provide an introduction to bees, then a chance to identify them under the microscope using the dichotomous keys and images in the new field guide and also the resources available on Steven's British Bees on Flickr site: https://www.flickr.com/photos/63075200@N07/collections/72157631518508520/. A field trip on the Sunday will allow you to see living ones and develop basic collecting and field identification skills plus a better understand their ecology and conservation. A signed copy of the Field Guide is necessary for the course and can be purchased at the event (but unfortunately not loaned) for £33. Steven's limited edition artwork will also be availbale at half price - see http://www.stevenfalk.co.uk/gallery.html.
Saturday location: Rye Harbour Village Hall, Rye Harbour Road, TN31 7TR (see: http://www.ryesussex.co.uk/directory/269/rye-harbour-village-hall/). 9.30 - 16.00
Sunday location: Rye Harbour Nature Reserve, meet at visitor centre (TQ 94555 18633) 9.30. Will finish at about 15.30
What to bring:
Microscope and insect net if you have them
Tubes and pooters if you have them
Pack lunch and plenty of drink
Suitable clothings for the Sunday (including walking boots, long trousers and cap/hat)
Copy of the Field Guide of Bees of Great Britain and Ireland (or sufficient money to purchase one on the day)
Any specimens or photos that you already have
Cost: £40 for the weekend
To book, please send a cheque payable to 'Steven Falk', 10 Fishponds Road, Kenilworth, Warwickshire CV8 1EX. Payment in advance required. For more information, contact Steven at firstname.lastname@example.org
These days I like to vary things a bit when visiting Dungeness, yesterday I started by walking out from Scotney GP to Oakhill Fleet [again]. The "back pits" produced the regular Black-necked Grebe with the Pochard flock, Great White Egret in Sussex, 4 Whitefronts and an unexpected Green Sandpiper. Near the fleet the Corn Bunting flock had dwindled to 27.
A walk down Dengemarsh Road provided bird spectacle: 180 Stock Doves and a swirling flock of 150 Linnets, but then it was time to get down to business and head for the Patch. Here was a swirling mass of gulls , but a very obliging juv Iceland Gull was on the beach-one of two reliably present for a few weeks; the second was on the sea.
A quick walk round the reserve provided the handsome male Ring-necked Duck once again, a couple of Great Whites and just one redhead Smew. I stopped at Hawthorn Corner on Walland Marsh, more spectacle with 1000 Golden Plovers standing in a wheat field; 10 Yellowhammers were near the cottages.
Highlights from Castle Water this morning, 34 Pintail, 20 Ruff, Great White Egret in flight from the viewpoint, Peregrine and two Marsh Harrier. Teal, Shoveler, Wigeon, Gadwall and Lapwing were present in varying numbers.
Sunday was Webs count day. Now that the wildfowl shooting has ended for this season there were plenty of duck on the pools. Highlights included 190 Shoveler and 5 Pintail. Fifteen White-fronted Geese were present with the chance of more hidden at the back of the levels. There were 12 Ruff with the many Lapwing.
It was difficult seeing much on the sea as it was very murky. A two minute count totalled 53 Red-throated Diver flying westwards with a handful flying east.