Thursday, 8 October 2015


A flock of 25 linnets was feeding amongst the sea-blite bushes at the East Mersea Point on Sunday 4th. The birds were also flying onto the nearby grazing fields to feed and to drink from the ditch.
Other finches of note seen at the park during Sunday morning included twenty goldfinches and at least two siskins in alders by the pond.

One of twenty skylarks seen at the park, this one on the seawall path, twelve others flew west over the park, while a few others fed in the fields.
Six yellowhammers passing west over the park was of interest. The only swallows seen during the day was one group of seven heading west.
Two Cetti's warblers were singing at the same time from opposite sides of the grazing fields. One singing from the reeds in the dyke was possibly a new bird in, as this is away from the usual range of the resident bird.

An immature gannet flew into view whilst scanning the east shore of the Colne with the binoculars. The bird flew just inside the mouth of the Colne passing Batemans Tower before turning round and heading back out to sea on Sunday morning.

I wondered if the gannet was going to dive down into the river to join the fishing frenzy that a group of 25 cormorants were having. Although the gannet passed right over them, it didn't seem interested and carried on its way.

Also in the river were 200 brent geese mainly along the eastern side, a great crested grebe and a common seal. Overhead there was the unusual sight of a great spotted woodpecker flying high eastwards off the Island flying from the Golfhouse area, over the Colne in the direction of the Batemans Tower area on the opposite side of the river.

A kingfisher was seen at the park pond and a sparrowhawk was noted near here too on Sunday.

Also on Sunday a red squirrel was reported visiting a garden along the East Mersea road opposite the old Pick Your Own field.

A hundred greylag geese were on the grazing fields on Saturday 3rd, some pictured above on the main pool in the fields. Amongst the 200 wigeon was a female pintail on the fields.
A male sparrowhawk flew low over the pools scattering all the wildfowl in its wake.

The kingfisher and 42 little egrets were counted by Jo Phillips and friends on Saturday afternoon.
Two siskins were seen with 10 goldfinches feeding in alders by the pond.

Late migrants were thirty swallows passing during the day, a yellow wagtail flying east and a blackcap in the bushes. Five goldcrests were also noted in various bushes and trees.

 These three wheatears were photographed on the park seawall on 25th September by Andy Field, also the picture below.

This clouded yellow butterfly was seen at the park on Friday 25th, also photographed by Andy. Up to three clouded yellows were seen along the Maydays seawall towards the end of September by Martin Cock.

This rather dull looking moth is a nationally scarce feathered brindle, a coastal species in southern England which has only been seen once before at the park. This individual was one of 75 moths of 15 species that came to the moth trap on Friday night.
A handful of beaded chestnuts were noted in the trap, a typical autumnal species and reasonably common.

This is the first large wainscot of the autumn season, maybe one or two others still to come.
Other moths noted included deep-brown dart, black rustic, autumnal rustic, square-spot rustic, frosted orange, L-album wainscot, setaceous hebrew character, large yellow underwing, lunar underwing, mallow and brimstone.

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