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Saturday 25th February 2012

A handful of new Songies in today is dead right for the start of spring passage. On the move 2 Rooks, Curlew, Skylark & Reed Bunt going south. In the last couple of days the local Ringos have started to reappear on the reserve which is indicative of the improving weather & lengthening days. Rock Pipit still on the point & Sanderling still along the shore. A Pale Brindled Beauty is only the 2nd site record - does this species exist here at a very low density or is this just a wandering individual ? If this is just a transient specimen, and the species is not resident here, then he is wasting his time coming here as the females are flightless.

Friday 24th February 2012

Following on from almost tropical conditions yesterday, more signs of spring movements today including the first new Robin & Great Tit of the year trapped & ringed. First Great Tit of the spring is spot on date wise with the first new Robin of the spring a week to ten days earlier than expected. 40 Linnets on the reserve first thing is a high number for February suggesting that this lot were not wintering to far away from here. Some visible migration this morning included 3 Mipits, 2 Jackdaws, 2 Crows, Rook, Stock Dove & Siskin going south plus a Lapwing in off the sea. Also on the move two flocks of Barnacles totalling 20 birds going south, presumably on their way back to the continent. The moth traps were put out for the season three nights ago with the first moths of the year in the traps this morning - Tortricodes alternella, Amblyptilia acanthadactyla & The Chestnut. The tortrix is good for us having only been recorded in three previous years despite it apparently being abundant in oak woodlands inland.

Thursday 23rd February 2012

Almost tropical conditions for the end of February. Today's migrant was a Rook flying south. A Woodcock may be one left over from the cold snap or a spring migrant. Apart from these two birds it's very predictable.

Wednesday 22nd February 2012

Windy, overcast & not a very pleasant morning. Bird wise about as riveting as the weather. 2 Great-crested Grebes, 2 Shelduck & a Brent south offshore are this mornings highlights !

Tuesday 21st February 2012

3 Goldeneye north with 7 Oyks & a Great-crested Grebe south plus a handful of Cormorants & Red-throated Divers coming and going. Pair of Peregrines perched on the nearest dock cranes as the tall new ones are in use. Sanderling on the beach and a Purp on the point. A Skylark went south with another on the reserve. Pond maintenance completed this morning with it, all being well, holding water (which is more than can be said for the waders i was lent to complete the job which did not hold water !). Later in the afternoon a new adult male Blackbird in fine fettle was trapped in the helli - springs coming.

Monday 20th February 2012

An Iceland Gull in near adult plumage followed one of the fishing boats in just before mid day as it was gutting close inshore. This is probably only the 11th of its kind to be recorded here. On the move offshore 28 Common Scoter, 5 Pintail, 4 Shelduck, 2 Teal & a Great-crested Grebe south plus 38 Red-throated Divers north. A Greenfinch trapped was the first new one of the year.

Sunday 19th February 2012

An hour staring out to sea in glorious sunny conditions produced a drake Goldeneye plus a group of 4 Goosanders (2 drakes + 2 redheads) together - the number of records we have of Goosander at this time of the year you can count on one hand. The only other birds on the move were 3 Red-throated Divers north, 2 Brent south & seagulls. 4 Snow Bunts were on the aggregate yard beach, 2 Sanderling on the river bank and singles of Dunlin & Ringed Plover were attempting to roost on the beach near the point at high tide.