Friday, 4 January 2019

WHITE-FRONTS DROP IN


Three white-fronted geese were found grazing with the other wildfowl in the park's grazing fields on Thursday 3rd. Andy Field took these first two pictures early in the afternoon.

The white-fronted geese appeared to be a small family group of two adults and a juvenile, pictured above on the left.

The white-fronted geese were in the middle of the field, this picture taken from the seawall as it was grazing with some wigeon. They later walked over the field to graze with the brent geese. They weren't present the following day.
A pale-bellied brent goose was also seen in the flock of 600 brent geese.

The shorelark was present on the East Mersea Point on Wednesday, Thursday and despite being flushed by a dog-walker and flying over to Brightlingsea, it was back on the beach on Friday.

A flock of brent geese was feeding along the shoreline beside the country park beach on Wednesday 2nd. Offshore two gannets in the distance were circling over the sea near Colne Point and diving into the water to fish, also 500+ gulls flying about this area too. Off Cosways were 5 Slavonian grebes, 80+ great crested grebes, 10 red-throated divers and a great northern diver, while in the Colne were 4 red-breasted mergansers.

A buzzard flew over the park field, 5 redwing and 2 goldcrest in the park trees, in the fields were 600 brent geese, 500 wigeon, 125 lapwing, 10 black-tailed godwits, with 100 teal on the saltmarsh, 200 knot and 10 sanderling seen from the Point.
Two red squirrels scrambled through the trees in the hedgeline by the car park at the park early on Wednesday morning.

On Thursday 3rd two Slavonian grebes and a red-throated diver and 2 gannets were seen offshore from the park with a great northern diver seen by Andy. A common buzzard was perched at the back of the fields. Two great northern divers and a Slavonian grebe were seen from the West Mersea Esplanade by Yvonne Watling Hu on Thursday.

Offshore from the park on Friday 4th were 9 Slavonian grebes, 2 gannets by Colne Point again, while at the Point a red-breasted merganser flew up river and a grey seal was close-in. Two snipe flew over the fields, 15 greylag geese grazing before flying off, rock pipit flew off the saltmarsh, 100+ avocets on the outer mud, buzzard flew over the pond, 9 tufted duck and 14 gadwall on the pond and a peregrine was seen scattering birds near the Point by Martin Cock. A great northern diver, 4 Mediterranean gulls and 20 sanderling were seen by Yvonne Watling Hu at East Mersea Point on Friday.

A barn owl flew near the East Mersea road at Weir Farm early morning on Friday 4th and one perched by the road near Church Lane early evening.

At West Mersea the black brant was seen feeding with brent in the field between the Seaview and Waldegraves caravan sites by Andrew Thompson on Friday.

The firecrest was seen over three days in West Mersea along the footpath at the top of the Firs Chase caravan site. First found on Monday 30th, it was photographed as shown here by Andy Field on Tuesday 1st and then seen again by Martin Cock on Wednesday after an hour of waiting but not seen on Friday.
Nearby a lesser whitethroat was photographed by Jonathan Bustard on Friday in the Firs Chase cemetery.

Wednesday, 2 January 2019

SHORELARK RETURNS

A Happy New Year to followers of Mersea Wildlife.
After a day away, the shorelark was back on the Point at East Mersea feeding in the usual top part of the beach late morning on Wednesday 2nd. The bird took to the air briefly and called a couple of times before settling back down to feed.The bird failed to show yesterday and maybe it knew how busy the beach was going to be with lots of visitors out enjoying the mild weather.

Waders were gathering on the mud to feed beside the Point, such as this group of dunlin, also noted were 10 sanderling, 100 golden plover and 200 knot. In the river were 4 red-breasted mergansers.

Grazing the park fields on the sunny Wednesday morning were these 600 brent geese, also 500 wigeon, 125 lapwing, ten black-tailed godwits 40+ curlew and 4 stock doves in the fields. A buzzard spooked the birds off when it passed over the fields being mobbed by crows.
Noted in the park were 5 redwing and 2 goldcrests.
A merlin, sparrowhawk and 11 redwings were also reported in the area of the park.

Offshore from the park two gannets were circling off Colne Point with 500 gulls on Wednesday morning, also great northern diver, ten red-throated divers, 5 Slavonian grebes and 80+ great crested grebes were seen.

Two red squirrels were seen passing along the hedgeline behind the park buildings first thing on both Tuesday and Wednesday mornings. A stoat was seen near the park pond on Wednesday by Steve Hunting.

On New Year's Day a merlin was seen near East Mersea Point by Glyn Evans, six red-throated divers seen offshore by Andy Field and the water rail at the park pond by Steve Entwistle. At West Mersea red-throated diver, goldeneye, two great northern divers, pale-bellied brent goose 2 marsh harriers, and 7 Mediterranean gulls were seen by Andy and Matt Turner. The firecrest showed itself to Andy and Steve on Tuesday, present for the second day along the path at the top of the Firs Chase caravan site.