Wednesday, 5 October 2016


The beach in front of the park beach was the warmest place for this male wheatear to be, sheltered from the northerly wind by the cliff on Sunday 2nd. It seemed quite confiding and posed nearby for some photos.

The wheatear continued to pose during the morning for photos, this one above and below taken by Andy Field.

This male bird seemed a bit scruffy, maybe it had a rough flight to reach Mersea the previous night.
An immature wheatear was along the seawall on Saturday morning.There was a whinchat over the weekend in the park's grazing fields.

At the park on Sunday were 4 blackcaps, 5 chiffchaffs, 150 swallows, 2 goldcrest while a white wagtail was seen by Andy. A marsh harrier was seen over the car park first thing by Andy and then a second bird flew over the Point later in the morning.

The kingfisher was hard to locate at the park pond early on Sunday morning but eventually it showed for Andy here. The Cetti's warbler was singing, the water rail called, 3 song thrushes perched up. The year's record little egret count so far, of 102 birds was made by Helen Mussett on Sunday.

On Saturday 5 yellow wagtails were with the cows in the fields, 50 linnets at the Point, 30 brent geese in the Colne, 86 little egrets roosting, 2 shoveler by the pond, 25 meadow pipits and 2 goldcrests noted.

On Friday 30th 24 goldfinches were feeding near the pond, whitethroat, 5 blackcaps, 20 swallows 2 house martins and 6 chiffchaffs were noted at the park.
At West Mersea on Friday a manx shearwater drifted out of the Blackwater passing from Old Hall towards West Mersea, the sighting relayed from Brian Churches at Old Hall Point to Andy.
A barn owl flew high over Blue Row as it got dark on Friday evening. A grey wagtail and 2 sandwich terns were seen at the Youth Camp by Martin Cock.

At the park on Thursday 29th a hobby flew over the Point and out across the mudflats south-west, a wheatear on the beach, 30 avocets in the Colne, 10 brent geese, 30 swallows passing over the park during the day, 8 chiffchaffs in a big tit flock, 55 little egrets at the roost and 6 mistle thrushes.
A spotted flycatcher was found in Cross Lane by Martin on Thursday, a sparrowhawk flew past a flock of 50 linnets at Bocking Hall and 5 red-legged partridge were near Manwood Grove near Shop Lane.

At Bocking Hall on Tuesday a large flock of 1000 starlings were perched on wires near the farm. On the park fields at high tide were 160 curlew.

In sheltered spots around the park several dragonflies were on the wing either migrant hawkers or common darters like this male pictured above by Andy on Sunday. Four red admirals were on the wing and a speckled wood too.

Sheila Rayner stopped her car in Bromans Lane early on Wednesday morning to watch a red squirrel in the middle of the road. She watched with amazement as it then scampered underneath her stationary car to carry on down the road. The Watkins family in the nearby Bromans Farm have been seeing the red squirrel scamper across their barns and also strip their walnut tree of nuts over recent days.

Moth trapping at the end of September into early October can be quite rewarding at the park and this splendid merveille du jour on the 28th has been the main highlight.

Several feathered ranunculus have been seen at the trap over the last week.
Around 180 moths of around 18 species were logged on both 28th and 29th at the park with the bulk of them being lunar underwings.

A couple of the sallow moths have been noted, as the name suggests, it feeds on the leaves of sallow trees. A few barred sallows also seen.

Some smart looking black rustics have been noted along with deep-brown darts too.

The autumnal rustic is a regular in the autumn in small numbers over several nights.

The flounced chestnut is an annual visitor to the trap in the autumn.
Also noted were beaded chestnut, square-spot rustic, mallow, large-yellow underwing, broad-bordered yellow underwing, L-album wainscot, snout, setaceous Hebrew character, shuttle-shaped dart, red-green carpet brindled green, green brindled crescent and rush veneer.

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