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Saturday 7th April 2012

An extended observation period today as a few of us had a play with the spring traps out on the reserve after netting. 2 Wheatear were added to the mornings birds which were, Chiffchaff 3, Blackcap 2, Wren and Blue Tit. At least 2 extra Song Thrushes were present to the normal couple, likely heading back over to the continent. 3 Separate Red-throated Divers were offshore along with 14 Cormorants on the move.

A few Brent, Canada and Greylag geese were seen heading in various directions. A total of 6 Wheatear were out on the common with 3 Black Redstarts amongst the brambles and concrete. The hybrid falcon is still hanging around, being sighted almost daily. Sadly a pure female Peregrine has not been seen for a few weeks now.

Friday 6th April 2012

A few more birds around today and lighter winds allowing some ringing. 8 birds in total were ringed, 3 Chiff's and singles of Blackbird, Blackcap, Wheatear, Robin and Song Thrush. A few more butterflies were on hte move in the sun, with 3 Small White's seen, and a Brown rat made a rare appearance. Bird wise other things included 13 Shelduck conducting their daily parliament on the beach, with a couple of brents going North and 1 heading South. Another Sparrowhawk was seen crossing the river to Essex via the reserve and a lone Jackdaw followed in the same direction.

Thursday 5th April 2012

Blowing a gale for most of the day today and thus very few nets opened. A new Robin and Woodpigeon were ringed from the Heligoland. On the observation front a short seawatch produced a couple of Red-throated Divers, a Gannet heading North and a couple of Brents heading South. A 2nd Summer Yellow-legged Gull was amongst the Herring Gulls on the beach, providing some amusement as they smashed open snails that had emerged after yesterdays rain.

Wednesday 4th April 2012

A frustrating day with nets opened and close a few times before the rain set in, only singles of Blackbird and Robin ringed. Another Swallow was feeding around the trees and 3 Wheatear were out on the shingle, no rings evident on any of them so at least 2 new birds since yesterday. A couple of Gannets went South, and  a Red-throated Diver went North.

Tuesday 3rd April 2012

A bit more going on in the migrant department today, with light winds shifting round to be almost Southerly by late morning. On the move South were 6 Common Gull, 2 Cormorant, 2 Carrion Crow, 2 Jackdaw, a Rook, a Yellowhammer and the 2nd Swallow of spring. A lone Skylark headed inland whilst a Cormorant and a pair of Greylags went North. On the reserve were 3 Wheatear, with no sign of the previous days' Black Redstarts. 21 new birds were ringed:

Chiffchaff 7, Blackbird 3, Blackcap 3, Greenfinch 2, Wheatear 2, Linnet 2, Redwing 1, Song Thrush 1.

Monday 2nd April 2012

Still in the NNE winds and with some rain on the way tomorrow, bird were again thin on the ground. at least 6 Chiffchaffs were new in, along with a Blackcap, continental Song Thrush and a new Blackbird. A few Linnets were retrapped from previous years, obviously now exploring the bushes for possible nest sites. A retrap Dunnock and Robin also showed signs of nesting with brood patches at various stages. Moving through were 6 Brents and  Red-throated Diver heading North, and going South 5 Golden plover, Sparrowhawk, Great Crested Grebe and Yellowhammer. 2 Small White butterflies appeared around noon.

Sunday 1st April 2012

Very quiet on the bird front this morning, with a distinct lack of song/calls when opening the nets. No hints of any warblers with only a Linnet, a Robin, a Woopigeon and a Great Tit Ringed. Out on the reserve amongst the usual suspects were 5 Wheatear, 5 Ringed Plover and 3 Black Redstarts including one in song. A Reed Bunting made a brief stop in the bushes and singles of Pied Wagtail and Yellowhammer went South.