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Saturday 10th March 2012

Female Marsh Harrier went south early morning. Also going south 6 Crows, 4 Mipits, 2 Jackdaws & a Goldfinch. Moving through the bushes new in were a couple of Great Tits & a Chaffinch. 3 Yellow-legged Gulls were noted with the loafing gulls just inside the dock complex this morning. 2 Snow Buntings are still with us. Signs of spring are the appearance of Frogs in the Butts pond doing what Frogs do !

Friday 9th March 2012

5 Rooks, single Jackdaw, Carrion Crow & Yellowhammer went south. Offshore a handful of Brents, Red-throats, Shelduck & Common Scoter coming and going plus a single Gannet north. In the bushes a couple of new Blackies, Chaffinchs & a Long-tailed Tit. The pair of Peregrines strutted their stuff around the near dock cranes with the adult Iceland Gull appearing late morning before heading towards Harwich up the River Stour. Also amongst the gulls a 2nd winter & an adult Yellow-legged Gull.

Thursday 8th March 2012

On the move 8 Crows, 2 Jackdaws, Rook & Yellowhammer going south. Migrants in the bushes non-existent. Less gulls than yesterday with the bulk of those that are with us staying well offshore. Of greater note is the fact that the local pair of Peregrines appear to be very keen on using the crows nest on the nearest green dock crane for their nuptials - much to the annoyance of the crows who successfully reared a brood at this site last year. At mid-day what was presumably yesterdays adult Iceland Gull was seen just inside the dock compound with the 2 Snow Buntings reappearing around the point in the pm.

Recent Recoveries

Amongst the most recent batch of recoveries are a Blackcap caught here on 22nd October 2011 having been ringed 308 km away in Holland on 30th September 2011. Female Blackbird ringed here on 24th October 2011 trapped 5 days later 93km away at Rye Meads in Hertfordshire. Long-tailed Tit ringed here on 14th November 2010 retrapped 147km away at Gibraltar Point, Skegness on 14th May & again on 9th October 2011. Lesser Redpolls trapped here on 11th October 2011 retrapped 124km away at Icklesham in East Sussex 4 days later, another trapped here on 12th October 2011 also caught 4 days later at Icklesham plus another trapped at Burgh Castle, Great Yarmouth on 16th November 2011 retrapped here 77km away and 1.3g lighter the next day.

Wednesday 7th March 2012

A bit of a Roger Melee in the gull department with at least 6,000 gulls behind the ships going in & out of the harbour at the moment. 2nd winter Glaucous put in an appearance at 0745hrs & an adult Iceland Gull at 0845hrs. Also on the move were a single flock of 28 Chaffinchs battling south in the wind & rain plus 5 Starlings coming in off the sea.

Tuesday 6th March 2012

After yesterdays deluge things are starting to dry out a bit. Highlights this morning were 2 Velvet Scoter north, 4 Barnacle Geese south plus a Short-eared Owl on the reserve. Also on the move 8 Red-throated Divers, 2 Gannets, 2 Shelduck, 2 Oyks & a Fulmar. For those of you who enjoy ploughing through large numbers of seagulls about a thousand (mostly immatures) are feeding behind the shipping going in & out of the harbour at the moment. Passerine movement almost non-existent with a single Redwing on site plus the first migrant Blue Tit of the spring.

Monday 5th March 2012

Blowing a chilly Force 7 - 8 gale with a few naughty gusts in the Force 9 department plus it's started raining again - lovely ! The undoubted highlight of the morning was a whale that broke surface several times as it drifted south at 0850hrs. Unfortunately it eluded identification, but as nearly all the whales that have been seen off here have ended up stranded somewhere nearby it may get identified retrospectively. Prolonged seawatching (what else can one do in these conditions ?) produced a total of 9 Dunlin, 6 Gannets, 3 Red-throated Divers, 2 Great-crested Grebe, single Guillemot & Grey Heron. A Purp flew past close inshore making it's way to the jetty. Also offshore at least 3 Grey Seals.

Saturday 4th March 2012

Drizzle degenerating into rain by mid-morning does not make for pleasant conditions. 19 Barnacles south just offshore with a handful of Chaffinchs the only real sign of passerine migration. As the morning went on a total of 5 adult Gannets went north plus a fine Pom Skua moving north along the beach line.