Monday, 28 March 2011


It has been generally dry and bright over the last couple of days but the easterly breeze has remained chilly. The weeping willow tree at the back of the park pond is becoming more eyecatching than the other willows in the area - crack willow, goat willow and white willow. One chiffchaff has been singing for the last few days from these willows with at least one other bird seen here too on Monday 28th. Three fieldfares flew north-east over the park early in the morning.

There's been the familiar mix of wildfowl on the pond in recent days with a few shoveler, mallard, gadwall and 8 tufted ducks. The pair of mute swans appear to have chosen their nest site amongst the reedmace and have built a substantial nest recently. Two pairs of little grebes are also busy sorting out territories.

At least 800 brent geese were in the grazing fields on Sunday nibbling up the last of the grass as were 200 wigeon. In the pools the ruff is still present feeding along the edges, being joined on Saturday by 150 redshank at the high tide . No big black-tailed godwit roosts recently, like the numbers last week but a few were still present feeding beside the 100 teal. A dozen snipe, 30 curlew and 36 golden plover have also been on the fields. Martin Cock saw a white wagtail on the fields.

On Saturday a pair of adult Mediterranean gulls flew past the Point calling as they headed out of the river. They passed over a ringed plover that looked as if it was prospecting a nest site on the shingle beach. In the Colne 5 great crested grebes were the only birds of note seen here.

Five adders were eventually spotted in the park on Sunday when the sun finally came out with a similar number the previous day. A peacock butterfly was noted on Sunday, while 4 common lizards were out basking on Monday and a brown hare was seen at dusk by Bromans Lane.

The moth trap at the park on Saturday night produced the small selection of 14 moths from hebrew character, common quaker, small quaker and clouded drab.

A singing chiffchaff and 2 goldcrests were in Firs Chase in West Mersea on Monday morning and the corn bunting was singing beside the East Mersea road near Bocking Hall farm.

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