Monday, 20 October 2008


Sunny weather continued into Saturday 18th, providing nice conditions for a walk along Coast Road in West Mersea. This is the view looking back into the Mersea Quarters from St Peters with the tide coming in.

It was good to see more dark-bellied brent geese gathered along the edge of Cobmarsh Island, since I last looked a fortnight ago when only a dozen were seen. Now there were at least 100 birds back from their breeding grounds in Siberia, ready for the winter here around Mersea. It was great to hear again the familiar calls of the geese - a real winter sound of the Essex coast.

Also on Cobmarsh was a group of 10 little egrets gathered together for a high tide roost. Also seen were the usual oystercatchers, cormorants and various big gulls - herrings and great black-backs.
A common tern flew past some boat moorings, so not all of these have gone yet to Africa and there was a great crested grebe seen too.
In the distance to the west, a couple of marsh harriers could be seen flying over Old Hall Marshes.

The various plants and grasses have been recently mown on the grassy slope of St Peters, helping to preserve the meadow appearance with a variety of plants, whilst preventing the scrub from taking over.

Not many small birds were noted around the bushes or reedbed area during the late morning walk although 4 redpolls flew high overhead calling as they headed off the Island. A rock pipit was the only other bird of note, heard near the houseboats.

The big ivy bushes were still proving popular with various insects including four red admiral butterflies enjoying the sunshine.

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