Sightings can be Emailed to:
Marc Heath - Heathym007@aol.com
Grove Ferry river trips visit here.
Number of species seen so far this year = 165
The Glossy Ibis was still showing this morning from the Marsh hide at Stodmarsh per the RBA pager.
With an extra hour of light this morning I was out early arriving in the valley area at 5.30am where I had a drive around the area noting 4 Tawny Owl calling in Trenley woods. I then drove down to Stodmarsh and parked up and after a quick drink of coffee I wandered up towards the Marsh hide in the growing light. I was soon watching the Marsh Harriers coming out of roost with 9 birds seen making their way towards Grove. I arrived at the Marsh hide where I met Martyn and we spent a couple of hours in the hide watching the Glossy Ibis which showed well from a distance but allowed good views through the bins and scope. The light was bad but a few shots were taken of this rare valley bird. I then wandered on back to the main lake via the alder wood at Stodmarsh where I spent a while scanning the birds. I noted 4 Goldcrest, 27 Fieldfare, 6 Cetti's Warbler, 4 Water Rail, c150 Greylag Geese, 1 Pink footed Goose in fields above Stodmarsh, 2 Green Sandpiper, 11 Common Snipe, 5 Water Pipit, 1 Kestrel, 1 Little Egret, 1 Sparrowhawk, 5 Grey Heron, 20 Skylark, 7 Siskin, 2 Ruff, 1 Chiffchaff and 1 Pintail. There were 13 Great crested Grebe, 1 Great spotted Woodpecker, 2 Ruddy Duck, 4 Wigeon, 54 Tufted Duck, 201 Pochard, 123 Shoveler with lesser numbers of Gadwall and Teal along with 1 Yellowhammer, 1 Kingfisher. I then called into Grove Ferry briefly where I had 30 minutes from the ramp. I noted 3 Goldcrest, 3 Black tailed Godwit, 2 Water Rail, 1 Common Buzzard, 1 Ruff, 1 Cetti's Warbler, c700 Lapwing, c300 Teal and c150 Fieldfare north.
After hearing a Glossy Ibis was seen in front of the Marsh Hide Steve Ashton and I went there only to find a blank canvas except a few water pipits and couple of marsh harriers. After an hour's wait the ibis suddenly appeared in flight from the left, circled and dropped into the water meadows where it was lost from view. Another wait, after which it flew to the back of the marsh and very slowly came towards the Marsh Hide, closely following a little egret. After filling our boots with photos they both suddenly flew off to the west at 12.20.
I spent from 10am until 2.30pm at Grove Ferry today where along with Steve the Warden, Ben Ring, Steve Ashton, Mark Chidwick and Martyn Wilson we were helping at the Feast hide with the Island. We spent a good few hours clearing weed from the dykes and laying stone over the Island to improve the habitat and views. Hopefully some shingle will be put on top which will attract Waders and Terns etc next year. I did not do any birding throughout the time but a few things could be seen and heard whilst working. I noted 1 ring tail Hen Harrier, the first of the autumn I think which flew west towards Stodmarsh, 2 Cetti's Warbler, 5 Siskin, 1 Redpoll, 1 Tufted Duck, 1 Little Grebe, c200 Lapwing, 1 Ruff, c40 Golden Plover, 1 Marsh Harrier, 1 Sparrowhawk, 2 Mute Swan, c30 Greylag Geese, a few Long tailed Tits, 1 Little Egret, 1 Green Woodpecker and a few Bearded Tits heard.
I had a good sighting this afternoon of an Osprey as we approached the Feast Hide. I also saw it later from the Tower Hide in a tree the other side of the lake.
I had an hour and a half this afternoon at Grove Ferry where I had a look from the ramp with a walk down to the Feast and Harrisons hide. Birds noted were 1 Chiffchaff, 1 Green Woodpecker, 8 Meadow Pipit, 34 Cormorant, 1 Pink footed Goose from the ramp with c164 Greylag Geese, 2 Reed Bunting, 15 Golden Plover, 5 Cetti's Warbler, 4 Ruff, 4 Black tailed Godwit, 28 Black headed Gull present, 3 Marsh Harrier, 5 Bearded Tit, 2 Sparrowhawk, 4 Linnet, 1 Snipe, 2 Pied Wagtail, c400 Teal, c200 Lapwing, 2 Goldfinch and 2 Pheasant.
There was a Grey Wagtail from the Feast hide this afternoon.
I had a 45 minute visit before work to the ramp at Grove Ferry where I noted 2 Cetti's Warbler, 2 Goldcrest, 1 Sparrowhawk, 4 Marsh Harrier, 12 Cormorant, 7 Ruff, 1 Greylag Goose, 1 Kestrel, c550 Teal, 1 Mute Swan, 2 Grey Heron, 2 Snipe, 4 Black tailed Godwit, 1 Jay, 2 Bearded Tit, 3 Reed Bunting, 113 Black headed Gull, 1 Golden Plover, 1 Skylark and 3 Song Thrush.
Although a few hundred yards outside of the recording area, whilst teaching outside today I had a flock of 7 Crossbills flying west over the school field calling followed shortly by 7 Redpolls.
I had a couple of visits into the valley today before and after work for an hour or so. The afternoon visit at least had some warm sunshine whilethe morning was quite cloudy. Birds noted from the ramp and Feast hide included 3 Marsh Harrier, 2 Cetti's Warbler, 1 Little Egret, 3 Grey Heron, 4 Reed Bunting, c600 Teal from the ramp, 1 Kingfisher, 1 Kestrel, 1 Ruff, 2 Water Rail squealing in the reeds, 8 Linnet, 1 Black tailed Godwit, 3 Mute Swan, 1 Golden Plover west, 1 Little Grebe, 2 Snipe and 44 Black headed Gull present from the ramp. I mat up with Chidders at Grove after work where walked down to the water meadows which seem to have far too much water on for any waders but on the positive side the island and reeds have been cut well back from the Feast hide allowing good views once again. Hopefully this will be maintained and some weed removed allowing the Kingfishers to come back to fish from the posts. Birds we noted were 7 Snipe, 1 ruff, 1 Little Grebe, 1 Green Sandpiper heard, 2 Cetti'sWarbler, 3 Marsh Harrier, 1 Sparrowhawk, 1 Kestrel, 3 Grey Heron, 1 Great spotted Woodpecker, 1 Green Woodpecker, 2 Chiffchaff, 10 Long tailed Tit, 1 Goldcrest, 15 Blue Tit, 3 Black tailed Godwit, 2 Little Egret and a few hundred Teal and Mallard from the ramp.
My Dad and I went to Grove Ferry and from the ramp it was pretty quiet just a couple of Cormorants and Lapwings, we then walked to Marsh Hide and on our way we saw a Wheatear, Herring, Black Headed and Great Black Backed Gulls, Meadow Pipits, Green Woodpecker, Grey Heron, Kestrel, Jay and 6 Marsh Harriers in flight. From the hide we saw 2 Snipe, Stock Doves, Greylag Geese and 2 Marsh Harriers, unfortunately no Bitterns but a Peregrine Falcon W. We then worked back to Feast Hide and on our way saw Reed Buntings, plenty of Bearded Tits and passing Skylarks. From the hide we saw Teal, Mallard, Shoveler, Coot, Moorhen, 3 Snipe, 1 Little Grebe, a brief sighting of a Water Rail on the far side of the water and a lone Red Crested Pochard was also on the water.
There was a Jack Snipe showing prominently on the mud from the Feast Hide this afternoon, along with several Snipe and one Green Sandpiper
I was awake very early this morning and so with no wind and bright skies I decided on a visit into the valley to do some Owling. I arrived in valley space about 4.30am and soon bumped into another nutter who was out early, Mark Chidwick. I spent the next hour driving around the area noting 6 Tawny Owl, 3 Little Owl and 1 Barn Owl before I parked up at Grove and met with Mark and Martyn. The fog got gradually thicker in the next few hours and eventually a group of us birded from the ramp as it slowly started to lift. Birds noted from here were 2 Water Rail, 3 Cetti's Warbler, 1 Grey Heron, 1 Redshank, 3 Marsh Harrier, 1 Green Woodpecker, 3 Snipe, 1 Dunlin but no sign of yesterdays reported Pectoral Sandpiper, 1 Sedge Warbler, 7 Reed Bunting, 4 Ring necked Parakeet and good numbers of Teal and Lapwing from the ramp. With the fog still playing a problem I eventually left for Reculver to see what could be found.