Shoebill - Uganda June 2016

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Friday, 30 September 2016

Seaford Head 30/9/16

A week of westerlies and with no scarcities hitting the south coast the optimism has been very low, but this morning the area felt good, though alas just the expected migrants were seen. The Finches are starting to get going though still in small numbers, and Hirundines made the most of the calm conditions. Very little else to say other then I'm glad I resisted the Eastern Kingbird on Barra (I was checking up flight and ferry timetables last night) as my arrival would have coincided with the bird flying into the clouds and buggering off not to be seen again, so whether I would've seen the bird or not I'm not too sure? October tomorrow...........bring it on!!!

Totals are:

Grey Wagtail - 2
Wheatear - 4
Yellow Wagtail - 15
'alba' Wagtail - 12 E
Chiffchaff - 65
Willow Warbler - 1
Blackcap - 35
Reed Bunting - 3 W
Goldcrest - 2
Skylark - 2 high E
Goldfinch - 18 E (one tight flock)
Linnet - 30 E
Redstart - 1
Redpoll - 1 E
Siskin - 3 E
Whitethroat - 5
Swallow - 300 E
House Martin - 300 E
Whinchat - 1

 Whinchat in Hope Gap
 Reed Bunting in Hope Gap
Chiffchaff by the crater

Saturday, 24 September 2016

Splash Point & Seaford Head 24/9/16

With a moderate SE wind blowing, me and Bob started off down Splash Point for a fruitless twenty minute seawatch, with the only notable highlight being a juv/fem Marsh Harrier flying straight out to sea at a considerable height. The Head was generally quiet, though in sheltered areas there were small flocks of Chiffchaffs, but the most notable arrival was a Firecrest on the western edge of Hope Gap. The sheep field also held a small group of Golden Plover, and a Mistle Thrush flying north at Harry's Bush ended a fairly good circuit.

Totals are:
Marsh Harrier - 1 S at 07.15 (Splash Point)   
Tree Pipit - 1 E
Wheatear - 2
Golden Plover - 5
Meadow Pipit - 20 E
Goldcrest - 3
Chiffchaff - 40
Blackcap - 19
Grey Wagtail - 3 W
Whitethroat - 5
Firecrest - 1 (first of the autumn)
Yellow Wagtail - 6
Mistle Thrush - 1 N

Firecrest in Hope Gap

Friday, 23 September 2016

Seaford Head & Tide Mills 23/9/16

A very calm and slightly cooler morning today. Not too many migrants about, with the wealth of birds mainly flying over, with the highlight here being the first Siskin of the autumn. When the area had warmed up a bit, House Martins were moving in vast quantities. I popped into Tide Mills on the way home and saw the very obliging Shrike again.

Totals are:

Chiffchaff - 50
'alba' Wagtail - 6 W
Wheatear - 3
Willow Warbler - 2
Whitethroat - 7
Reed Warbler  - 1
Blackcap - 27
Meadow Pipit - 50 E
Reed Bunting - 4 E
Tree Pipit - 1 E
Long-tailed Tit - 4 (first this autumn)
Goldcrest - 1
Siskin - 1 E
Yellow Wagtail - 3
House Martin - ca. 2000 W
Swallow - ca. 500 E then moved west later on
Sparrowhawk - 3 circling together causing the Martins a bit of bother

 Wheatear in Hope Gap
 hard to capture the vast movement of House Martins moving over the head, this is all I could manage

Red-backed Shrike still showing very well at Tide Mills

Thursday, 22 September 2016

Convolvulus Hawkmoth 22/9/16

Convolvulus Hawkmoth in the parent's garden caught in the overnight moth trap. Thanks Dad for the text.......again.

Wednesday, 21 September 2016

Red-backed Shrike - Tide Mills 21/9/16

Crazy views of this juv Red-backed Shrike at Tide Mills this afternoon, found by someone from London searching for Long-tailed Blues. A stunning bird!! Thanks Dad for the text.

juv Red-backed Shrike at Tide Mills

Tuesday, 20 September 2016

Seaford Head & Cuckmere Haven 20/9/16

An afternoon vigil was predictably quiet, though a few nice bits were encountered. Whilst having a kip on the Head, news came through of a Wryneck by the scrape, but despite a lengthy search in murky conditions, I couldn't re-locate it. 

Seaford Head:
Goldcrest - 1 Hope Gap (first of the Autumn)
Lesser Whitethroat - 1
Chiffchaff - 10

Knot - 2
Bar-tailed Godwit - 2
Merlin - 1 fem
Sedge Warbler - 1
Wheatear - 4
Yellow Wagtail - 10

Wednesday, 14 September 2016

Cuckmere Haven 14/9/16

With the same weather pattern and feeling 'not all that,' I opted for the Cuckmere this morning that produced the expected migrants. Standing on Haven Brow for half hour was brilliant with hundreds of Hirundines flying straight past me continuously, whilst having fun trying to photograph individuals. A Grasshopper Warbler was flushed twice on the long grass bank by Foxhole, but best was saved until last when an adult Hobby swooped past and caught a Wheatear. A bit of sea mist rolled in halting any further Hirundine movement.

Totals are:

Bar-tailed Godwit - 1
Whinchat - 7
House Martin - ca. 500 E
Swallow - ca. 600 E
Sand Martin - 10 E
Grey Wagtail - 6 E
Tree Pipit - 2 E
Grasshopper Warbler - 1
Hobby - 1
Wigeon - 11
Teal - 5

 Bar-tailed Godwit along the river
 Yellow Wagtail over Haven Brow
 Swallow over Haven Brow
 House Martins over Haven Brow
 Grey Wagtail over Haven Brow
bye bye Wheatear!!
adult Hobby successfully catching a Wheatear