Thursday, 28 October 2010


Have spent the last few days with the tractor swiping down the rough grass and old thistles in the park's grazing fields. Most of the wildlife seen has been from the tractor cab, as I've bounced along.

The fields are best for birds in the winter when the grass has been cut back and these two photos show a before the cut (above), and the fields a few days later after the cut (below). Wildfowl such as the wigeon and brent geese have always enjoyed grazing these fields during the winter.

The first geese onto these fields was a family of brent with two youngsters, grazing one end before I'd finished cutting the field today. A small flock of wigeon were also able to spread out onto the cut field to graze, although most of the wigeon are still grazing the area near the pools. There were still lots of teal, curlew, redshank and a few black-tailed godwits at the pools as well as a single grey plover.

At least a dozen snipe flew out of the long grass as the tractor edged closer to them. On one occasion I got out of the tractor as one snipe took off and soon landed again but on closer inpsection it was only a snipe and not a jack snipe. A few curlew were also feeding amongst the long grass and small numbers of skylarks and meadow pipits and a flock of ten goldfinches were also seen.

I heard that I just missed seeing two muntjac deer at the back of the pools near the pond at the end of Wednesday, that emerged once I'd left the fields. However a little owl perched up beside the car park at dusk calling loudly.

Earlier on Thursday 3 siskin flew over the pond and a sparrowhawk flew over the car park, while at the Point 2 rock pipits were noted and 140 avocets were on the nearby mud.

On Tuesday the kingfisher flew along the borrowdyke near the Golfhouse and landed in bush over the water. Two late swallows flew over the park in the morning slowly heading westwards.

On Monday Martin Cock found 3 female goosanders fishing along the edge of the water just below the Esplanade at West Mersea, where there was also 5 red-breasted mergansers, 13 great crested grebes and a siskin flying west. Later at Maydays there was a greenshank along the Pyefleet, while the following day a common scoter, 2 red-breasted mergansers were noted there and a ringtail hen harrier on Langenhoehall marshes.
Near here Hugh Owen was very lucky to have the rare sight of two tree sparrows visit his bird feeder on Tuesday afternoon.

The moth trap operated through Wednesday night and the following morning 18 moths of five species were noted involving satellite, November, green brindled crescent, yellow-line quaker and feathered thorn.

No comments: