Sunday, 27 November 2011


There were some nice views of some smart sanderling feeding along the East Mersea beach near the Point on Sunday 27th. At least 20 birds with their almost silvery white plumage were dodging the many Sunday walkers stretching their legs on the beach. These birds run around the beach as if they've been wound-up like clockwork, their legs move so fast. This great photo above of a sanderling was taken a few days ago by Stuart Read when he visited the Point on the 24th.

The snow buntings at the Point have continued to oblige several lucky birdwatchers over the last week or so. Alan Reynolds took these great photos above and one below, when he found 30 birds on the beach on the 24th. I had walked the same beach an hour earlier and not seen any snow buntings, so they must've just flown in. Andy Field thought there may've been 31 birds on the Thursday 25th.

Several folk saw the snow buntings over the weekend with about 25 birds on the Sunday afternoon while the previous day I managed to see 10 birds fly west onto the main part of the park and drop onto the grass.

There were plenty of birds again on the grazing fields with up to 500 teal amongst the pools. The same amount of wigeon were grazing the grass but no sign of any brent flock grazing here late in the afternoon. During the high tide 100 black-tailed godwits, 100 redshank, 80 curlew, 250 golden plover, 50 snipe and 50 lapwing were on the fields.

At the park pond on Sunday two water rails showed themselves with one coming out of the reedmace to feed in the field with a second bird seen flying across the pond. Ducks of note here were 10 gadwall, 20 shoveler and 3 tufted duck. The distinctive screech of an escaped cockatiel was heard by the pond. The bird was seen perching in the copse, making occasional short flights back and forth from a tree, where the yellow face and orange cheek showed this to be a noisy male.

Martin Cock saw two ringtail hen harriers during his walk at Maydays farm on Sunday morning.

The sunset from East Mersea Point on Saturday cast a pink sheen across the mud. In the distance over Langenhoe 12 marsh harriers circled above the lagoon as they gathered for the evening roost. In the river Colne 8 red-breasted mergansers flew out of the estuary.

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