Monday, 8 May 2017


A couple of male sedge warblers have returned to their usual bushes in the dyke by the Strood seawall. This male obligingly perched on a bramble branch whilst in full song late on Saturday 6th. The other sedge warbler has been a bit more secretive and less showy at its bush half-way along the dyke. These sedge warblers have been the last breeding ones on the Island for the last three or so years.

The swifts were also back on the Island on Saturday, flying high over the houses over Upland Road / High St North and the area around Queen Ann. Birds were noted in the skies above their houses by David Nicholls, Andy Field and Adrian Amos. By early evening 20 swifts were seen over the houses. Two swifts were seen flying along the Esplanade on Wednesday 3rd by Steve Entwistle.

Three cuckoos were noted during a walk along the Strood seawall on Sunday 7th with one perched on wires on Strood Hill, another crossing from Ray Island where it had been calling, towards Strood Hill and then a third bird calling from Feldy / Copt Hall direction. A cuckoo was also seen on Strood Hill early on Friday morning by Steve.
A nightingale song drifted over the Strood Channel from Ray Island and was heard by Andy Field on Sunday.

Also noted along the Strood on Sunday were 2 common terns, whimbrel, 2 yellow wagtails, pair of red-legged partridge, five pochard, sand martin, 12 swallows, and 2 common buzzards. A house martin was seen with some swallows over the Strood reservoirs by Andy on Sunday.

A Strood walk on Monday 8th, provided 2 singing sedge warblers, 4 singing reed warblers, 4 singing reed buntings, yellow wagtail, sand martin, 5 little egrets, 4 swifts, pochard and whimbrel.

Birds noted along the Strood on Saturday 6th included 2 sedge warbler, 2 reed warbler, 3 male reed buntings, 2 yellow wagtails, displaying meadow pipit, 4 corn buntings flying west, 10 house sparrows on seawall, sparrowhawk, pair of Canada geese, two pairs of oystercatchers on the fields, 8 whimbrel, 10 grey plover, 2 dunlin, 2 ringed plover and also a little tern and greenshank heard calling.

A Cetti's warbler was singing from the Gyants Marsh area east of Meeting Lane on Saturday morning and Cetti's warbler was also heard singing in Cross Lane by the Willmots.

A hobby raced low over the houses and gardens by Colchester Road, heading south-west early evening on Friday 5th.

This jay flashed its white rump to John Feaveryear, allowing him to take this picture at East Mersea.

This slow-worm also photographed by John, seen near the Coopers Beach seawall.

The pretty purple flowers of salsify were found by John by the Coopers seawall, the flowers staying open till noon, after which they close up for the rest of the day.

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