Saturday, 31 August 2013


This young grey heron was stalking the park pools on Saturday 31st and also present were 20 little egrets for the high tide morning roost. The wader gathering here included 150 redshank, 50 black-tailed godwits, 10 snipe, 50 lapwings while the 200 teal were the most numerous birds noted. Eight wigeon, 10 shoveler and up to 50 mallard were in the area. Sparrowhawk and a kestrel were seen circling over the park pond and fields in the morning. A dozen yellow wagtails were feeding by the cattle and overhead 50 swallows and 20 house martins were flying around.

The calls of a curlew sandpiper in flight were recognised as it passed over the park beach on Saturday morning and two birds with their white rumps were seen in the company of two dunlin and four ringed plover. The small flock seemed put off by the lack of mud and the busy beach and returned to the mouth of the Pyefleet, passing over the grazing fields as they flew away.

There was a report of 11 curlew sandpipers seen in East Mersea on Saturday along with 380 avocets. Adrian Kettle watched a red kite early on Saturday morning flying over the back of the Reeveshall fields where it then perched on a tree.

At the end of the afternoon I spent a couple of hours along the Reeveshall seawall just before the high tide. There were good numbers of waders being pushed around the Pyefleet with 3 curlew sandpipers, 5 greenshank, 2 spotted redshank, green sandpiper, 10 knot, 250 avocet, 100 black-tailed godwit, 50 grey plover, 50 ringed plover, 100 dunlin and 200 redshank the main wader gatherings.

A hobby was perched on a post on Langenhoe marshes, 4 kestrels were hovering in the air here and 10 marsh harriers were seen over Reeveshall as well as Langenhoe. Five wheatears, 25 yellow wagtails and 200 swallows with 5+ sand martins were noted over Reeveshall. A sandwich tern flying along the Pyefleet was unexpected, also counted were 25 common terns and 2 little terns.

On Friday at the country park a common buzzard flew west over the pond scattering the egrets and other birds away from the area. Ten mistle thrushes were seen eyeing up the ripening rowan berries on the car park. A willow warbler called near the hide and at night-fall a little owl was perched on one of the picnic tables near the car park.

The sunshine continued to be kind for butterflies and this pair of small tortoiseshells and a meadow brown were enjoying the buddleia flowers beside the park's information room. Other butterflies noted at the park during the day were holly blue, common blue, painted lady, comma, red admiral, speckled wood, gatekeeper, small heath, small white and large white.

This smart looking centre-barred sallow moth was one of 130 moths of 20 species noted in the trap after Thursday night's session.

There's been an emergence of light emeralds this week with up to a dozen noted in the trap. The pale green colour of this species matches the pale underside of the white poplar leaf.

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