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Saturday 13th August 2016

Yet another blustery day today with a few new arrivals overnight.

These came in the form of 62 Swallow, 12 Goldfinch, 6 Sand Martin, 5 Willow Warbler, 4 Swift and 1 Sparrowhawk, all on the move.

The sea was a little less productive today than yesterday with 23 Common Tern, 5 Sandwich Tern, 2 Redshank, 1 Oystercatcher, 1 Ringed Plover, 1 Avocet, 1 Grey Heron, 1 Common Gull and 1 Shelduck.

This Avocet, as far as we aware, is the first sighting of this species that has actually been seen on the ground, instead of them flying over.

This Green Carpet moth was caught in our moth traps this morning which we get here infrequently, but is quite common inland.

Ringing: 3 birds ringed this morning including 1 Goldfinch, 1 Linnet and 1 Sparrowhawk.

Friday 12th August 2016

A cloudy start this morning with a breeze coming from inland, followed by a clear, windy and hot afternoon. A few bits and bobs on offer on the bird front.

Staring out to sea produced 23 Common Tern, 21 Oystercatcher, 5 Sandwich Tern, 4 Cormorant, 3 Whimbrel, 2 Little Tern and 1 Curlew. A Marsh Harrier drifted south early morning.

Decent numbers of Clouded Yellow butterflies out today with 8 individuals seen.

Migrants over the observatory included 28 Swallow, 11 Sand Martin and 5 Willow Warbler.

Ringing: 3 birds ringed this morning which were 1 Willow Warbler, 1 Goldfinch and 1 House Sparrow.

August Litter Pick

Litter pick this Saturday 13th August 0930hrs start. Further information on the events page of

Thursday 11th August 2016

Today has been a rather wild and windy and unfortunately, rather wet day. Still, a good variety of birds were on offer.

This Great black-backed Gull was spending much of its time out on the nature reserve, hunting Rabbits. It appears this is the first image of this species of gull we have had on the blog.

Sea watching was the order of the day with a decent movement of waders moving southwards. These include 83 Oystercatcher, 30 Dunlin, 7 Redshank, 6 Golden Plover, 4 Ringed Plover, 3 Turnstone, 3 Whimbrel, 2 Curlew, 1 Bar-tailed Godwit, 1 Grey Plover and 1 Greenshank. Plus 13 Common Tern, 8 Shelduck, 4 Sandwich Tern, 3 Cormorant, 1 Gannet and 1 Yellow-legged Gull.

Land migrants seen included 6 Swallow, 4 Sand Martin, 3 Willow Warbler, 2 Yellow Wagtail and 2 Swift.

This Acleris emargena has only been noted on a couple of previous occasions, despite being common enough inland.

Ringing: 2 birds ringed this morning in the form of 1 House Sparrow and 1 Linnet.

Wednesday 10th August 2016

Wood Pigeons sparring over females, this being harvest time when a new ready made food source becomes available, the males are in peak breeding mode.

Little in the way of birds to catch the eye today, just a few migrants on their way out, the best being 6 Willow Warbler, 3 Common and 1 Lesser Whitethroat and 1 each of both Reed and Sedge Warblers.

On the insect front, a Willow Emerald Damselfly was located and 2 Clouded Yellow butterflies were seen.

9 birds were ringed;  5 Willow Warbler and 1 each of Reed Warbler, Sedge Warbler, Blackbird and Linnet.

Tuesday 9th August 2016

A slightly less breezy today with a colder feel to the air. Despite this a productive day otherwise.

New arrivals and migrants on the move were in good numbers today. These include 48 Swallow, 15 Willow Warbler, 10 Goldfinch, 6 Sand Martin, 5 Common Whitethroat, 2 Lesser Whitethroat, 1 Blackcap and the 1 Wood Warbler from yesterday that showed very well throughout the day.

Sea watching produced 9 Barnacle Geese, 4 Common Tern, 2 Oystercatcher, 1 Redshank, 1 Curlew, 1 Sandwich Tern and a brief sighting of a Little Stint which is a decent bird for us.

You can tell it's getting more Autumnal when species like Orange Swift are starting to appear, (above).

Ringing: 10 birds ringed this morning including 8 Willow Warbler, 1 Goldfinch and 1 House Sparrow.

Monday 8th August 2016

Despite the strong winds from the west throughout the day, migrants kept trickling through.

Hirundines put on a decent show again with 156 Swallow, 18 Sand Martin, 12 House Martin and 5 Swift southbound. Others included 12 Goldfinch, 6 Common Whitethroat, 2 Willow Warbler, 1 Wheatear, 1 Sedge Warbler and 1 Sparrowhawk.

A Wood Warbler was heard albeit briefly for a few seconds this morning but there has been no sight nor sign all day.

Gatekeeper butterfly enjoying the afternoon sun.

The wind prevented much sea watching to be done but we noted 5 Cormorant, 3 Common Tern, 1 Gannet, 1 Redshank, 1 Oystercatcher and 1 Whimbrel.

Ringing: 6 birds ringed this morning including 2 Willow Warbler, 2 Robin, 1 Wren and 1 Sedge Warbler.

Sunday 7th August 2016

Gorey blog today with a killer Herring Gull dismantling a baby bunny rabbit plus a dead baby Porpoise on the tideline along the riverbank (below). More passerines on the move today including southbound 15 Swallow & 4 House Martin plus on site 12 Willow Warbler, Sedge Warbler, Reed Warbler, Garden Warbler & Spot Fly. 8 Barnacle Geese went out then north with, rather bizarrely, another sitting on the reserve for a while ! Offshore southbound 18 Oyks, 6 Teal, 4 Whimbrel, 3 Turnstone, 3 Grey Plover, 2 Dunlin, Golden Plover, Bar-tailed Godwit & Shelduck. In the butterfly department both Clouded Yellow & Painted Lady noted today.

15 birds ringed: 8 Willow Warbler, 1 Wood Pigeon, 1 Linnet, 1 Song Thrush, 1 Great Tit, 1 Garden Warbler, 1 Reed Warbler & 1 Spotted Flycatcher.