Wednesday, 8 January 2020


A flock of 200+ brent geese was feeding in the grazing fields of the country park on Tuesday 7th. Of more interest were ten white-fronted geese feeding at the back of this field along with 12 greylag geese. The white-fronteds were in the far corner where the grass was lusher although at times they were difficult to see if they sat down. One of the biggest flocks ever to turn up here.
Andy Field managed to take a video of the distant white-fronted geese using maximum zoom on his camera -

Also noted near the Golfhouse on Tuesday was a snipe flying in to land on the fields. A mistle thrush was seen beside some mistletoe clumps.

An oystercatcher was standing in front of the clubhouse at Coopers Beach on Tuesday, offshore a Slavonian grebe was seen.
Thirty fieldfares were on a hedgerow near Bocking Hall, while at Maydays farm two common buzzards, 500 brent geese, 100 skylarks and 3 yellowhammers were seen.
At West Mersea a Mediterranean gull flew along the foreshore while a blackcap was in the Firs Chase garden again.

On Monday 6th there were 20 red-breasted mergansers in the Pyefleet Channel, seen during a walk along the Reeveshall seawall. Also along the channel were 4 great crested grebes and 3 little grebes.
A big flock of 1500 brent geese was grazing one of the grass fields, 500 starlings were also nearby, while near the seawall were 2 separate pairs of stonechats, 8 linnets and 10 skylarks. At the back of Reeveshall 500 woodpigeons rose out of a copse when three buzzards flew over.

A green woodpecker was seen near Shop Lane, while in the nearby Fishponds Wood two red squirrels were seen in the trees.

A visit to the East Mersea Point on a dull Sunday 5th, saw a pair of stonechats on the saltmarsh while on the park's grazing fields ten white-fronted geese were still present along with 12 greylag geese and 1000 wigeon. Near the Golfhouse were a mistle thrush and a rock pipit.

Steve Entwistle found a great white egret feeding on the saltmarsh at Maydays farm on Saturday 4th. Whilst spending half its time out of sight in the saltmarsh, when it stuck its long neck up, the big yellow bill was clear to see. Five little egrets were also feeding on the saltmarsh for comparison.
Rob Lee reported seeing two great white egrets in this same area just before Christmas.

At the same time watching the great white egret, a ringtail hen harrier was seen in the air with a common buzzard over Langenhoe, however it was soon lost to view when it dropped back down. Two marsh harriers were also seen over Langenhoe too.

The kingfisher was perched on the seawall sluice again, 100 wigeon and 50 teal were in the Pyefleet as was a grey seal. Six yellowhammers were by a game cover crop and 300 brent geese were in a field.
At Bocking Hall fifty fieldfares were perched on a hedge near the East Mersea Road.

The water rail showed well beside the country park pond on Saturday seen first by Andy Field then later by Steve Entwistle.
A Slavonian grebe was seen offshore from Coopers Beach by Steve.

A male blackcap photographed through the kitchen window of the Firs Chase garden on Saturday 4th.

Also seen briefly at the feeders in the Firs Chase feeder was the regular coal tit on Saturday.

Along the Strood seawall on Friday 3rd, two common buzzards, sparrowhawk, male stonechat, 14 skylarks and 20 pied wagtails were seen. Along the channel were 18 avocets, 2 Mediterranean gulls, 100 teal, 5 little egrets while 700 brent geese were feeding on the Peldon side.

On Thursday 2nd at St Peters in West Mersea, a great northern diver, 10 red-breasted mergansers, 8 great crested grebes, 2 Mediterranean gulls, sparrowhawk and two rock pipits were noted.

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