My camera has been playing up of late – locking into manual focus only so I’m having it looked at. Well when I say looked at I mean fixed. Needless to say when I delivered it it was behaving itself and focussed like a dream. Anyway it’s still there so I am camera-less at the moment.
Today I went to Pegwell. I was hoping to see the resident long legged Milton but he was nowhere to be seen- though it seems he was there early morning. The tide was more or less in when I arrived but the spoonbill was out on the salt marsh in front of the hide as were 2 avocets and a redshank. Curlews could be seen roosting in amongst the vegetation so I left counting them till the tide had receded a little.
I walked down to Stonelees and went warbler counting. The whole area ( as is much of East Kent ) was alive with common whitethroats. I actually noted in 36 in my book but I’m sure there are a lot more than this. A little more interesting were 2 willow warblers collecting food and another 2 singing their heads off in the tree tops. Lesser whitethroats were thin on the ground with me only finding 2 (singing). Reed and Sedge warblers were also pretty thin on the ground with only 4 reed and 5 sedge being found, likewise chiffchaffs (2). Other warblers seen were blackcaps (2) and a garden warbler.
I heard a cuckoo but didn’t go searching for it and heard one and saw another turtle dove – the latter having been found by Gary Faulkner who had managed to get some decent looking pictures.
Also in Stonelees was a family of long-tailed tits. 7 youngsters were sitting in a bush all together not more than 10 yrds away.
On the raptor front I spotted 2 kestrel and a marsh harrier(juv).
By the time I left (~9.40) the water had receded enough to see some mud and I counted 46 oyster catchers, 24 curlew, 55 mallard and 37 shelduck. The spoonbill was still there when I departed at 9.40 but I didn’t notice the avocets.
The pictures were not taken today; the spoonbill and avocet are from a few weeks ago and the turtle dove was from Pegwell a year or so back.