Saturday, 2 March 2013


Following a call from Ian Black on Saturday 2nd telling me about eight waxwings he'd just seen in West Mersea, I dashed round to the High Street to find 19 birds perched up. Most of them were perched in the big beech tree pictured above, happily trilling away,  although they had their eyes on the dark green cotoneaster hedge laden with berries, on the right of the picture.

At one point during the twenty minutes of watching them, a group of ten waxwings dropped down to gorge themselves in a brief feeding frenzy on the berries for about a minute with the traffic whizzing past. They headed back up to the tree and after ten minutes up there, all the birds quickly flew off and away.

Andy Field tracked 17 of the birds later in the afternoon to the Legion car park in Barfield Road, where he was able to take these two waxwing photographs.

Around the middle of the day, had a look out to a flat calm sea with the tide coming in, from the east end of the Seaview caravan site at the bottom of Cross Lane. From there 220 great crested grebes, 4 Slavonian grebes, 2 great northern divers, 3 red-throated divers, 27 red-breasted mergansers and 2 Mediterranean gulls were noted as well as one common seal too.

Alongside Cross Lane, 34 curlew and 8 skylarks were in one field while one goldcrest and a siskin were along the trees by the caravan site.
Revisited the East Mersea fields between Weir Farm and Meeting Lane having seen a big flock of fieldfares whilst driving along the East Mersea road on Friday.
On Friday 350 fieldfares, 50 redwing, 100 chaffinch, 20 greenfinch, 2 corn bunting, 30 skylarks, 200 starling, 20 stock doves, 10 goldfinch, 2 mistle thrush, 4 song thrush were feeding in three fields in the area. It was an impressive sight seeing lots of birds feeding in some rather bare-looking rape fields.

A common buzzard also appeared on the scene and provided a nice fly-past although all the other birds soon disappeared as it made it's way to perch in a tree in Reeveshall Lane.
To the east of Meeting Lane on Friday, 3 marsh harriers were flying around the back of Reeveshall but not much else noted.

A short visit to the same fields at the north end of Meeting Lane on Saturday morning revealed the 200 fieldfares and 20 redwings were beside the fields closer to Reeveshall. Also noted here were 50 chaffinch, 20 greenfinch, 30 linnet and 2 corn buntings too but generally not as many birds as the day before.

In the wheat field by Bocking Hall 2 red-legged partridge were seen on Saturday morning.

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