Saturday, 19 October 2013


 Not the crispest of photos but this one shows the pale-bellied brent goose that was in the park's grazing fields on a wet Saturday 19th. At certain angles the whiter flanks helped this goose stand out amongst the other 300 dark-bellied brent geese.

Also in the fields were 80 greylag geese, pair of Canadas while there seemed to be a particularly large wader roost with 500+ redshank and 500 black-tailed godwits packed tightly together during the middle of the day. Good numbers of duck as well with 1000+ teal and 600+ wigeon along with 10 shoveler.
No sign today of the 3 pintail that included 2 drakes that were seen on the pools on Friday morning.

The old Maldon fishing smack Advent sailed into the Colne past the East Mersea Point where the snow bunting was present all day again. First seen late on Thursday, the snow bunting seemed quite happy feeding along the high strandline along the beach at the very eastern end. Rock pipit, pied wagtail, reed bunting and 5 linnets also present in the area.

Nine female common scoter flew upriver late afternoon while 6 female red-breasted mergansers flew out of the Colne. Waders of note included 20 avocet past the Point and 700 golden plover resting on the mud.

By the pond a Cetti's warbler sang several times from the thick hedge nearby but not providing any views. No doubt this bird will only stay a day or two before moving on, as previous Cetti's have done. Thirty redwing flew over the pond at dusk looking for a roost site for the night. On the pond gadwall numbers are picking up slowly with ten now present.

A short-eared owl was seen early in the morning flying to the north of the park being hotly pursued by various crows. The owl then perched in a tall white poplar for a minute or so before flying back out, circling high up and then heading north out of sight.

Ten swallows passed over the car park at the beginning of the day. No other late summer migrants noted during the day.

Michael Thorley reported on Friday seeing a brambling with chaffinches in his garden just west of Meeting Lane in East Mersea.

This little brown moth was fluttering along the clifftop at the park with the little white spots flickering in flight which is the main identification feature of the vapourer moth. It eventually settled amongst a broom bush where the picture was taken. Although it has visited the moth trap in the past and is probably quite a widespread species here, it is rarely noted at the moth trap.

A migrant hawker was still on the wing near the pond towards dusk on Saturday.
A red admiral was seen at the park on a dull Friday morning yesterday.

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