Friday, 31 August 2012


The tide was out in the Strood Channel during a walk along the nearby seawall in the afternoon of Friday 31st. Lining the side of the seawall and the edges of some of the saltmarshes were the yellow flowering plant, golden samphire, pictured above.

The main waders of interest here were singles of greenshank, avocet and whimbrel with 150+ redshank being the commonest. Five little egrets were feeding along the bottom of the channel and 3 common terns were flying around the moorings.

Small birds noted alongside the fields and dyke included 2 yellow wagtails, 10 linnets, 5 reed buntings and 5 reed warblers.

Andy Field walked the Reeveshall seawall on Wednesday 29th and saw the osprey was still on the post on the Geedons. This bird has been in the area for almost a week now, although so far it hasn't provided any close views from the Island.Andy also noted hobby, 4 marsh harriers, 3 wheatear, 3 whinchat, 300 black-tailed godwits, 200 avocet, 100 grey plover, greenshank, 5 little tern, 2 common tern and 2 yellow wagtails.
 Steve Entwistle saw the osprey on Monday 27th and also a curlew sandpiper from Maydays.

The previous day Martin Cock was lucky enough to get good views of a honey buzzard from the Maydays seawall, flying over the wooded section of the Langenhoe ranges, behind which, the bird disappeared from view. Martin also saw a curlew sandpiper and 4 common seals in the Pyefleet here, while on Friday 2 common buzzards and a wheatear were seen.

Adrian Amos reported seeing two late swifts flying over his East Road garden in West Mersea on Wednesday. The majority of the swifts left the Island in early August and so any other sightings in late August like this one, or early September, could be the last of the year.

On the park's grazing fields, 120+ teal and 20+ blacktailed godwits were the main birds here with little egret and 10 lapwing also present. The nine mistle thrushes were seen in the car park and also Bromans Lane on Tuesday 21st.

A ball of three adders were coiled up together in the sun, alongside the main track at the park on Thursday 23rd. A water vole was seen at the park pond nibbling on some reedmace stems in the middle, on Monday 27th. The butterflies seem to be passing their peak as the buddleia flowers fade away. There were still 12 red admirals and 8 small tortoiseshells around the buddleias on the 27th but less than this by the end of the week. Two badgers were seen ahead of the car's headlights in Bromans Lane just after night-fall on Friday 31st.

The moth trap was run a couple of times during the week providing a fairly predictable catch of 50 - 70 individuals of about 25 species. The orange swift pictured above, has been turning up in small numbers over the last 2 or 3 weeks.

The small Chinese character pictured above, looks like a small bird dropping when it's at rest. The little silvery "character" mark can be seen in the middle of the wing.

Some of the other moths noted included common carpet, green carpet, common wave, light emerald, brimstone, flounced rustic, square-spot rustic, silver-Y, snout, common wainscot, white-point, uncertain, straw underwing, rosy rustic, large yellow underwing, and lesser broad-bordered yellow underwing.

No comments: