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Saturday 7th May 2022


More Rain was most appreciated by the botany. A Serin was here for c.15 minutes mid-morning. Also of note a Reed Bunting as we only have eight previous records for the month of May. Other migrants were 8 Wheatear and a small handful of new Lesser Whitethroats, Whitethroats & Willow Warblers. 2 Redshank came out of the river then north and 4 Swallow went south.

With a milder calm night over 250 moths of 40 species (including 166 Shuttle-shaped Dart) including this Poplar Lutestring which is a species only noted here on half a dozen previous occasions.

Ringing: 2 Willow Warbler, 1 Lesser Whitethroat, 1 Linnet, 4 Wheatear, 1 Whitethroat. 

Friday 6th May 2022

A very warm day today, shorts weather for the observatory staff apparently! A few notable migrants around, still plenty of new lesser whitethroats in, a movement of robins and one new adult blackbird, which was interesting as all the locals are feeding young or are on eggs at the moment, this adult female was not even in breeding condition. On the subject of blackbirds, our first fledglings were caught today, a very young male, and a much more advanced female. 

A further sign of spring was the continued emergence of large red damselflies which are commonly the earliest emerging dragons. A presumed hairy dragonfly last week just pipped them to the post this year though. A lot of butterflies were present today, with green hairstreaks making their presence known on our lilac bushes. 

Ringing was moderate, with some fledglings and a reed warbler.

Moth traps produced similar interest, with this Waved Umber, a species that is just about annual on site, despite abundant food plants, being the most notable.

 Ringed Birds: Blackbird 3, Chiffchaff 1, Lesser Whitethroat 1,  Reed warbler 1, Robin 2, Whitethroat 1, Willow Warbler 4.

Thursday 5th May 2022


Migrants today include 8 Wheatear, 6 Lesser Whitethroat, 5 Chiffchaff, 5 Willow Warbler, 3 Whitethroat, Blackcap, Brambling, Reed Warbler, Song Thrush & Yellow Wag. On the move southbound 55 Swallow, Goldfinch, Kestrel & Whimbrel with northbound 4 Whimbrel plus a Little Egret in off. Black Red was wandering singing around the car park, containers, fort & museum from pre-dawn for most of the morning. A couple of Dunlin were on the beach plus a solitary Brent. 

A few more butterflies on the wing including 3 Orange Tip & the first Green Hairstreak & Holly Blue of the year.
Nut-tree Tussock is far from annual with us & is largely absent from the Felixstowe peninsular.

Ringing:3 Willow Warbler, 2 Lesser Whitethroat, 1 Chiffchaff, 1 Song Thrush, 1 Whitethroat, 1 Wood Pigeon.

Wednesday 4th May 2022

A real rarity this morning with some rain for a couple of hours which dampened the dust down and gave the botany, mosses & lichens a much needed drink. Increase in Wheatear to at least 13 plus the first Reed Warbler of the spring with a supporting cast of half a dozen Lesser's plus the territorial Whitethroats. A White Wag dropped in briefly and 8 Sanderling and a Whimbrel were on the beach.

Treble-bar are now coming to play. They live on St. John's-wort so can be common here.

Ringing: 2 Lesser Whitethroat, 1 Reed Warbler.

Tuesday 3rd May 2022

With some very misty moisture in the air today and a change in wind direction, a little bit of spring arrived. 3 common sandpipers were present on the river, its notable to get a picture of one common sandpiper here, 3 is something else. Another ring ouzel, a female this time, was present on the reserve along with our first whinchat of the year. The fieldfare was still present, giving a little wintery tinge to the day list. 

Ringing picked up significantly until the wind picked up. We had a small fall of warblers, with 6 species basically the only birds ringed. 9 lesser whitethroats, outnumbering all other species by at least 3 times, is not an experience you get every year. Our first garden warbler and common whitethroat were also ringed during the morning.

The moth trap produced this rather excellent specimen, a Pale Prominent, with absolutely phenomenal camouflage making it look very much like a wood chip, without looking carefully, its hard to see its anything living. 

Ringed Birds: Blackcap 3, Chiffchaff 2, Common Whitethroat 1, Garden Warbler 1, Lesser Whitethroat 9, Willow Warbler 3, Woodpigeon 2.

Monday 2nd May 2022

Another calm day held the suggestion of something special . . . but that never coalesced. 2 Avocets at the point were of note, as was the third short-eared owl of the season flying about early morning. A female brambling at the observatory added to the 'March' flavour the day was giving. Swallow numbers were up, but still didn't break 3 figures and no martins or swifts were seen. The first Garden & Sedge Warbler of the year were noted.

On the moth front we had some more luck, as the season progresses and the temperature increases, we should get larger diversity more frequently. This Lunar Marbled Brown is a species that has only been noted here on three previous occasions.

Birds Ringed: Brambling 1, Lesser whitethroat 3, Linnet 2

Sunday 1st May 2022


Migrants included 5 Wheatear, 2 Chiffchaff, 2 Song Thrush, 2 Willow Warbler & Fieldfare plus the territorial Lesser Whitethroats & Whitethroats. On the move southbound at least 48 Swallow, 10 Goldfinch & Siskin with northbound 2 Swallow & Yellow Wagtail plus 3 Sand Martin in off. Offshore southbound 9 Oyk, 4 Whimbrel & Grey Plover with northbound 2 Common Scoter.

Haven't seen a Dog's Tooth for three years with past records usually later in the season and not looking like this dark form so it caused a little head scratching.

Ringing: nil (despite ideal weather conditions).