Wednesday, 27 March 2013


This female brambling was photographed recently by David Nicholls whilst it visited his bird feeders in his West Mersea garden in Queen Ann Road. There have been a few brambling sightings at garden feeders this winter in several places.

It was still a cold wind blowing across the park on Wednesday 27th but at least the sun was shining which enticed four adders out during early afternoon. This one was tucked up in a tight coil to keep warm beside the track, while three others were in the dell area.

From the hide 2 female marsh harriers were seen flying over the grazing fields, one which circled higher up above the pond as it then drifted west. In the far distance to the north, a male marsh harrier chased after a female high over Langenhoe.

A water rail scuttled quickly across the grass towards a hedge bottom where it was watched feeding for a few more minutes, with its wet red bill glinting in the afternoon sunshine. On the pond 11 tufted duck and 3 pochard were of note along with 10 shoveler and 10 gadwall. Also noted near the pond were a little egret and a curlew, while in the fields 400 wigeon and 100 golden plover were seen while 200 brent geese flew past.

At dusk the little owl perched on top of a telegraph pole beside the car park for the second evening running, although there was no sign of the second owl further along Bromans Lane seen on Tuesday at dusk.

Earlier in the day the two corn buntings were singing from opposite sides of the field at Chapmans Lane, West Mersea.

The sun broke through the clouds at the end of Tuesday 26th, which made a change from the cold grey days of late. Two little egrets, 300 wigeon, 50 teal and 5 snipe were the main birds here at the end of the afternoon. From the Point 5 marsh harriers were seen over Langenhoe to the north with a sixth bird flying past the Golfhouse to join the Langenhoe roost. In the river 10 red-breasted mergansers and 15 great crested grebes were noted. Ten avocets were reported flying past the Point earlier in the day.

Ten fieldfares gathered in the willow bushes over the pond to roost on Tuesday evening and a water rail appeared from the reeds to forage beside the pond.

On Monday 25th a barn owl hunted over the fields to the north of the park entrance mid afternoon. It paused for a few minutes and perched on some post and rail beside a neighbour's garden before resuming hunting again. At the end of the day a sparrowhawk appeared from the back of the pond scattering all the pigeons out the other side. Fifty fieldfares headed into the hedge beside the grazing fields for the evening roost.

Martin Cock saw the great northern diver and the shag off West Mersea on Tuesday 26th

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