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Newts are relatively easy to see and appreciate in a pond, but when they move onto the land their habits are much harder to study as they secrete themselves away in damp shady places.  A little insight to their world has been presented to me on a job where I am trapping newts and removing them from a development site.  Over the past week the palmate newt Lisotriton helveticus has started to appear in the traps close to one of the ponds suggesting that animals are moving back towards the pond ready to breed. Smooth newts and great crested newts are not doing this yet. This is the 13th specimen I have trapped in the past week.  Only three were trapped during the preceeding week.

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Rye Harbour Sightings

Still a lot of birds at the flooded Flat Beach Level over the last few days, including around 1000 golden plover, 250 each of wigeon and lapwing  around 100 dunlin (above) and 13 snipe, with the best of the bunch being a little stint today. Also today, a spotted redshank was on harbour farm, on the pool to the west of the barns, and a hobby flew over the Beach Reserve a little later.



Many of us think that our garden Robin is the same individual year after year. We are aware that there are often more about in our gardens in the winter but often do not realise that many of these birds are migrants from Europe. During the last few days there has been a huge influx into the RX area, at one local ringing site 67 have been ringed over the last three mornings. These birds originate from northern Europe and many are just passing through. The local ringing group has had birds subsequently recovered in France, Spain and Portugal.


Autumn Colours


The changing colours of the leaves on the trees are admired every year, but there is an equally good show of colour in our saltmarshes. The bright green glassworts and seablites turn red, then purple and finally brown as autumn progresses. At the moment they are quite red - as this morning's photo at the wader pool shows.


Rye Harbour Birds

A few surprises at Castle Water this morning,  2 Avocets feeding opposite the hide and 2 Greenshank flying around in the mist calling and 2 Hobbys. A few Swallows, Redpolls and Redwing, a Blackcap and Chiffchaff. The usual good variety and numbers of common ducks. Back near the beach 100s of Golden Plover, Wigeon, and Dunlin a few Wheatear, many Meadow Pipits (above) and the usual bunch of Little Egrets fishing.