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Mussels along the Rother

Take a walk along the banks of the River Rother and the shells of swan mussels are obvious, scattered at intervals along the bank, as in this photo taken on Rother Level.

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Bittern excavations

Large numbers of wildfowl on the Bittern Excavations yesterday, hard to get exact figures with so many birds in a small area but at least 160 Gadwall, 250 Teal, 90 Shoveler, 200 Wigeon, 6 Pintail and 300 Mallard had gathered. The highlight yesterday though was a ringtail Hen Harrier in flight over the fields at the northern end of the main pit, these raptors are a rare sight at Rye Harbour these days so always good to see. Also of note yesterday 6 Goldeneye and the Spotted Redshank were on Harbour Farm pools.


Misty morning in Hastings Country Park

A walk from Fairlight to Hastings yesterday [Jan 5] looked pretty unpromising; with thick mist and light drizzle I rarely lifted my binoculars.

However, it was mission accomplished, with a Dartford Warbler calling at Firehills, my first winter record here - this follows a good summer and autumn for these with up to  4 regularly recorded.


Rye Harbour shore/ridges

Great to see more waders here again today feeding along the shore and roosting along shore ridges, 180 Knot, 61 Grey Plover, 250 Dunlin and 45 Sanderling. The Lapwing roost at Ternery Pool also increased to at least 1200 birds.


Beach Reserve

The calmer conditions yesterday brought a wave of activity during the morning around the Beach Reserve. A fine selection of waders were around and in good numbers compared to recent weeks. Along the the shore at low and high water, 58 Knot, 39 Grey Plover, 80 Dunlin and 60 Sanderling. Flat Beach attracted 300 Golden Plover, 135 Oystercatcher, 18 Ringed Plover and the over wintering Spotted Redshank. Ternery Pool was also busy with 450 Lapwing, at least 65 Snipe and 180 Teal. The new saltmarsh area has also been the favoured location for our roosting Curlew during the day aswell as overnight (perhaps because of the high water levels on Harbour Farm) , at least 400 birds departed yesterday morning, and 190 were roosting there at around mid day. A walk around Castle Water this morning was very quiet, good numbers of Shoveler and Teal were present around the main pit, but the highlight did not come untill the last minute with a Firecrest at viewpoint.