Monday, 30 January 2017


A black brant was feeding with 400 dark-bellied brent geese on a small grass field next to Waldegraves Holiday park on Saturday 28th. The white flash on the flanks and the blacker back and wings made the bird stand out, pictured here in the centre of both pictures.

This black brant had a very broad white collar under its chin.
Also seen in the Waldegraves area were 3 Mediterranean gulls and five fieldfares.

Feeding on some spilt grain in Haycocks Lane on Saturday 28th were 30+ yellowhammers.

The yellowhammers perched up in nearby bushes for some time before joining the chaffinches, collared doves, lots of robins and blackbirds in the wheat feast.
The East Mersea pheasant shoot reported flushing at least six woodcock on Saturday morning from the wood near the north end of Shop Lane.

A common buzzard perched beside the East Mersea roadside at Weir Farm on Friday 27th. This bird headed off to Bocking Hall farm while a second bird flew south over the nearby fields.

There have been good numbers of golden plovers and lapwings feeding in the fields near Bocking Hall during these recent frosty mornings. This lapwing was feeding on the grass verge alongside Chapmans Lane. Twenty fieldfares have been feeding in the area too.

A visit to the seawall near Shop Lane provided views of a black brant feeding with 300 dark-bellied brent geese. As with the Waldegraves brant, this one's white flanks help it stand out in the centre of the picture above.

It was high tide during the hour and a half spent on the seawall with all the mud in the Pyefleet covered. A group of six barnacle geese flying out of the Pyefleet from Reeveshall was of interest as none were seen on the Island last year. An hour later the barnacles made a return flight into the Pyefleet before heading back to Brightlingsea.

Also in the Pyefleet were 35 pintail behind Peewit Island and ten red-breasted mergansers, while ten common scoter flew down the Colne. Four marsh harriers were noted on Langenhoe and 30 linnets fed on the Reeveshall saltmarsh and a Mediterranean gull on Reeveshall.

Three red squirrels were seen on the edge of Fishponds Wood late Friday morning, this one sat in a bush beside the path staring at me.

Another of the red squirrels was seen scuttling over a garden shed.
There was also a red squirrel at the start of Friday at the garden feeder in Firs Chase.

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