Monday, 28 November 2011


Returned to walk the Strood seawall in the morning of Monday 28th mainly to look at the brent geese flock. Once the geese had flown out of the channel, it wasn't long before the black brant was found. Most of the time it was amongst the brent geese flock but the digiscoped photo above shows it nicely by itself. This North American / eastern Siberian race of brent goose has now been present here for two weeks. However there was no sign of the red-breasted goose here with no reports from anywhere on the Essex coast since last Tuesday at Old Hall RSPB. There was also no sign of the tundra bean goose which hasn't been seen for a few days either.

Around 400 dark-bellied brent geese were feeding in the field nearest the Strood Hill. I had hoped to have seen more groups of geese fly in to join the main feeding flock but other than a flock of 70 birds which headed into the Pyefleet, no other flocks were seen.

Feeding in the same field were 4 lapland buntings along with 20+ skylarks. Three laplands took off calling and flew away while a fourth bird was found feeding on the near edge of the field with some skylarks. It provided good views on the ground and would've been photographable with a better camera lens.

This pair of wigeon were part of 50 wigeon noted along with 150 teal resting at the bottom of the Strood channel during the low tide. Amongst the waders were one avocet, 50 knot, 400 dunlin, 70 grey plover, 4 bar-tailed godwit, 30 black-tailed godwits as well as some of the other regular waders.

One marsh harrier flying low along the Peldon seawall was the only bird of prey seen. Along the channel 14 little grebes were feeding and at least five little egrets were seen too.

Other small birds seen during the walk were 3 rock pipits, 5 meadow pipits, 5 reed buntings, 5 linnets and also a flock of 15 fieldfares flying west off the Island near the Dabchicks.

Martin Cock saw 26 snow buntings at the East Mersea Point this morning and 300 brent geese and 99 greylag geese in the nearby grazing fields.

The monthly wildfowl count was carried out on Mersea by Glyn Evans and his trusty team which turned up a pink-foot goose on Reeveshall along with black brant amongst 350 dark-bellied brent geese. Also seen along the back of the Island were ringtail hen harrier, common buzzard, merlin, 6 marsh harriers, 10 red-breasted mergansers, 4 goldeneye, 6 pintail and then finishing with the jack snipe and 500 teal at the country park.

1 comment:

Caroline Gill said...

What a beautiful blog. I crossed the Strood for the first time yesterday!