Thursday, 13 September 2012


Good numbers of teal were back on the pools in the park's grazing fields with around 300 present on Thursday 13th. Numbers have been fluctuating in recent days with many teal feeding elsewhere on or near the Island. Wigeon have not been increasing as rapidly with only ten birds seen today, while on the nearby park pond 2 gadwall were seen again for the second time this week.

Also on the pools were 4 snipe although 10 had been seen on Tuesday. Twenty lapwing, 3 redshank, 50 curlew and 10 black-tailed godwits were also noted here.

The house martin passage continued for a second day with about 100 birds flying over the park including 30+ swallows and one or two sand martins on both days too. A few meadow pipits were also flying over the park calling as did yellow wagtail.

In the hedgerows 4 chiffchaffs, blackcap, reed warbler, 3 whitethroats and a song thrush were noted and a sparrowhawk passed overhead too.

Near the East Mersea Point there was the nice sight of 15 little egrets roosting during the morning high tide on the saltmarsh pools, along with an avocet, 100+ redshank and 5 grey plover. Later in the day 60 avocet and 20 golden plover were seen on the mudflats from the park.

Andy Field reported 3 willow warblers and a goldcrest amongst several small birds in the Shop Lane wood although he reported the Pyefleet seemed very quiet initially during Thursday morning.
One of the colour ringed black-tailed godwits Andy saw at the park on the 10th had been recognised 18 times since it was ringed in the Orwell river nearly five years ago. It has been a regular along the Colne estuary and has been seen at the park here in Jan 2009, Jan 2011, Jan 2012 and then now Sept 2012, as well as being seen in the Deben, Stour and near Stodmarsh in Kent during the last five years.

Steve Grimwade and his fellow Swallow Birding friends enjoyed several hours walking from the park round the seawall to Shop Lane yesterday. Amongst the birds they saw were common buzzard over Brightlingsea, hobby over the park fields, sparrowhawk across the river, 6 marsh harriers over Langenhoe, 170 avocet, 9 golden plover, 5 snipe, Mediterranean gull in the Pyefleet, 20 common tern, 5 whinchat near the Point, wheatear, 30 linnet, 3 lesser whitethroat, 7 whitethroat, 2 yellow wagtail and reed warbler.

The incoming tide pushed a greenshank and 25 redshank close to the park beach on Wednesday evening. On Tuesday 2 goldcrests and 5 mistle thrushes were noted at the park.

A weasel scuttled along the top of the seawall on Thursday and there was a common seal seen swimming offshore from the park on Tuesday. Two small tortoiseshells, 3 red admirals, 4 large whites, 6 small whites and 4 small heaths were some of the butterflies noted today.

Amongst some of the moths noted over recent nights was this large thorn, a species now seen for the third year running here.

The first frosted orange pictured above was in the trap on Wednesday morning, a fairly regular visitor to the trap during September.

The first L-album wainscot of the autumn pictured above, was in the trap on Monday morning. Small numbers should be noted over the next two or three weeks.

 Andy Field was quite captivated by the sight of this shore crab sitting on the path near the Point.

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