Tuesday, 19 October 2021

BREEZY FOR THE BLACK-TAILED

Twenty black-tailed godwits were feeding on the last of the mud along the Strood channel before the tide covered it on Tuesday 19th. Other birds noted during a breezy walk along the seawall were 100 golden plover, four ringed plovers, 100 dunlin also 100 turnstone on boats by the Hard. A stonechat, three rock pipits were seen, also two Cetti's warblers were singing from the dyke - one in the main reedbed and another nearer the caravan park. Near Feldy View a female blackcap was feeding in berry bushes with 20+ blackbirds.

A worn small copper butterfly was seen in Steve Entwistle's West Mersea garden on Tuesday.

High tide at Coopers Beach covered most of the nearby Rewsalls marshes on Monday 18th. A peregrine flew over the marshes and headed east along the shoreline. On the marshes were 34 little egrets, 80 curlew, 50 golden plover, 80 redshank, ten teal, two little grebes, two rock pipits and a Med gull. Offshore a red-throated diver and two great crested grebes were seen while at the East Mersea church a chiffchaff was calling.

Earlier on Monday two kingfishers were seen together at the seawall sluice at Maydays by Martin Cock, also seen there were two buzzards, two marsh harriers and two sparrowhawks. Steve Entwistle at Maydays saw a sparrowhawk, great spotted woodpecker and a few chaffinches in Haycocks Lane, while a mistle thrush was in the Cudmore Grove car park.

There was a glimpse of the sun setting over the West Mersea Hard on Sunday 17th. A merlin was seen flying over the Hard and then over the houses in Firs Chase, with a group of starlings rising up in a tight flock as the merlin passed by.
Other birds of prey were also seen at the end of Sunday by Andy Field watching the harriers heading into roost on Langenhoe -from the Shop Lane seawall. Sixteen marsh harriers was a good count, also a peregrine, merlin and two buzzards along with three green sandpipers and 1000 starlings were seen.

Earlier on Sunday afternoon during a walk along the north side of the island, a flock of six cattle egrets was seen dropping down amongst some cows on the Langenhoe ranges with one egret seen hitching a ride on the back of one of the cows. After a few minutes the flock took off and flew west until they were lost to view. There was a subsequent sighting of them the following day on Langenhoe farm among cattle.
A short-eared owl was flying high over Langenhoe, two green sandpipers were on the Reeveshall pool and another flying over Maydays calling, and a greenshank and two rock pipits were along the Strood. 

A family flock of six brent geese with four juveniles were on the country park dyke on Sunday with another seventy geese on the nearby foreshore. Twenty black-tailed godwits, 50 wigeon, four shoveler and a pair of stonechats were by the Golfhouse pools while a reed warbler, bar-tailed godwit and two knot were by Ivy Dock.

A great spotted woodpecker was feeding in Waldegraves caravan park on Saturday, while a merlin was watched chasing a skylark in dramatic fashion with the lark narrowly escaping by diving between two caravans. In nearby Cross Lane a little owl called and a buzzard perched in a tree.
A short-eared owl flew high over the Rewsalls marshes on Saturday as it drifted south. Also there at high tide were 300 golden plover, 15 black-tailed godwits, 20 little egrets, ten teal with a Cetti's warbler singing by the Youth Camp beach. Offshore were 30 brent geese, two great crested grebes, fifty oystercatchers and three Mediterranean gulls.

Ian Black reported a large thrush movement over Mersea Avenue during Saturday evening.

Four buzzards were seen on Friday during a walk along the Strood seawall, also two marsh harriers and two kestrels seen too. Along the channel were 70 wigeon, 65 teal, 120 black-tailed godwits, two vocal greenshank, 20 grey plover and forty linnets, while at Feldy View a grey wagtail flew over and two blackcaps were in some bushes.
Steve Entwistle watched a great white egret on Friday morning flying from the Dabchicks area towards Abberton, and also saw two siskins in Feldy View and another two flying over.
Andy Field noted four buzzards and a sparrowhawk heading east over his High Street North house on Friday morning.

At Cudmore Grove on Friday, the two bearded tits were still showing well for Martin Cock at the park pond on occasions- present for their second day here. Later at the park Steve Entwistle reported a guillemot drifting up the Colne, eight greylag geese, a red-throated diver flying south, two rock pipits, three pintail, tufted duck, 300 golden plover and 100 dunlin.

A red squirrel has been visiting the Firs Chase garden most days recently, often seen carrying walnuts to bury in the lawn.

Thursday, 14 October 2021

PINGING BEARDIES

A nice surprise on Thursday 14th at the country park pond for Steve Entwistle and me, was a pair of bearded tits calling and perching on the tops of the reedmace. The distinctive sound of the "pinging" call notes from the birds made us scan the reeds and reedmace around the park pond and we were relieved to be able to see them. The pale grey head of the male was easier to pick out than the well-camouflaged female. Luckily they were doing lots of "pinging" to help us locate them. The birds flew away a couple of times but soon came back again and were still present just after mid-day. John Fell reported counting 23 bearded tits on the nearby Langenhoe Point on Monday when he was doing the monthly WeBS count.

Earlier a lesser redpoll flew over nearby horse paddocks calling and was presumed to be the same bird seen again later at the park flying over. Three siskins flew over the pond calling, a redwing was feeding on rowan berries and three great spotted woodpeckers flew over the bird-hide. On the pond were 22 shoveler, a pair of gadwall, 20 wigeon and a few teal and mallard. Two water rails were heard squealing from opposite ends of the pond and a Cetti's warbler was singing loudly. Another Cetti's warbler was singing by the park dyke and another by the Golfhouse.

A handful of wigeon were on the park dyke on Thursday with another fifty on the Golfhouse pools, as were ten teal. A stonechat, ten linnets, two rock pipits and a reed bunting were on the saltmarsh and four swallows flew west over the Point.

A male tufted duck was also on the park dyke on Thursday.
On the mudflats were eight bar-tailed godwits, forty black-tailed godwits while in the Colne estuary were 500 brent geese and 15 great crested grebes.
During the periods of sunshine on Thursday morning at least 16 clouded yellows were seen flying over the the park's grazing fields.

The saltmarsh by the Firs Chase caravan park is showing autumnal red colours of samphire.
On Wednesday 13th a flock of twenty redwings dropped down into the birch trees at Feldy View, also four others there and a single one in a nearby berry bush showed that some thrush migration was taking place. Also ten blackbirds, a mistle thrush, three chiffchaffs and two blackcaps were also present in the area while a sparrowhawk flew over The Lane.

Along the Strood seawall on Wednesday were seen a marsh harrier, two buzzards, sparrowhawk, stonechat, 30 linnets and a rock pipit while along the channel were a great crested grebe, 110 golden plover, 50 wigeon, 50 teal and three brent geese.

At Cudmore Grove on Wednesday Andy Field reported two common scoter drifting out of the Colne and a nicely marked male marsh harrier hunting over the fields - also a red squirrel near the park toilets too. Martin Cock saw two chiffchaffs and a swallow at the country park, a tawny owl calling and a redwing by an East Road garden opposite the Fox pub while at Maydays there were two buzzards, marsh harrier, sparrowhawk, two Cetti's warblers and a green sandpiper. A red squirrel was seen near Mersea Barns by Martin.

Steve Entwistle visited the park on Wednesday and reported seeing ten long-tailed tits, two buzzards, three swallows, male marsh harrier, mistle thrush, two Cetti's warbler and a calling tawny owl. Later in the day at Coopers Beach four great crested grebes and 320 golden plover were seen by Steve.

In Firs Chase late Wednesday afternoon a grey wagtail and three redwing flew over and two kestrels were seen near to the garden.

A walk along the Strood seawall on Tuesday 12th produced a greenshank, 70 wigeon, ten dunlin, 20 teal buzzard and 100 linnets, while a blackcap was by Feldy View.
At Coopers Beach Steve Entwistle and Martin Cock watched six common scoters flying east and a red-throated diver flying west, also a common seal seen.

A grey wagtail flew over Feldy View calling on Monday 11th, then later along the Strood seawall were four buzzards, marsh harrier, sparrowhawk, 100 linnets, two rock pipits, 11 avocets, greenshank, 80 golden plover, 80 wigeon, 30 teal, six little grebes, fifty black-tailed godwits and five dunlin. A male great spotted woodpecker was watched hacking into a corn on the cob for a quick snack in the maize crop near Feldy View.

At East Mersea between Ivy Dock and the Point, a chiffchaff, blackcap, stonechat, rock pipit, grey wagtail, 150 brent geese and a marsh harrier were noted by Martin Cock. Later in the afternoon Steve Entwistle saw a pintail, 70 dunlin, two marsh harriers, two herons, five ringed plovers and 35 black-tailed godwits.

There were patches of blue sky on Sunday 10th for a walk along the north side of the island, coinciding with the high tide at the Strood which covered the saltmarsh. Birds noted at high tide here were nine golden plover, sparrowhawk, 100 linnets, three rock pipits, 20 little egrets and by the Hard were 100 turnstones. Earlier along the Bower Hall seawall were seen two grey partridge and two marsh harriers. Later on Sunday 11 grey partridges were seen here by Steve Entwistle, also three chiffchaffs and sparrowhawk.
 
Two corn buntings were by a game cover crop at Maydays on Sunday, also a yellowhammer, fifty linnets and a little owl by the farmyard.

Several wader flocks were gathered along the Pyefleet channel as the tide came in on Sunday with a flock of 1000 golden plover the largest - some pictured above. Also 500 dunlin, 20 ringed plover, 10 avocets, 70 black-tailed godwits, 100 redshank, 80 shelduck and two Sandwich terns along the channel. A peregrine watched proceedings from a fencepost on the Langenhoe seawall, four marsh harriers were flying around including a red wing-tagged individual, while on Reeveshall were 500 starlings with a leucistic bird, 80 lapwing and a rock pipit.

A Sandwich tern was seen off Coopers Beach on Sunday by Steve Entwistle and a chiffchaff was seen by Michael Thorley in his East Mersea garden.

Sunday, 10 October 2021

PYEFLEET PEREGRINES

Two peregrines were seen along the Pyefleet Channel on Saturday 9th - one perched on a fencepost on the army ranges' seawall and a second bird flying low over the near-side mudflats flushing the birds away. A marsh harrier was also seen flying over Langenhoe and two common buzzards were over Reeveshall. Four Sandwich terns were in the Pyefleet while on the mud were four bar-tailed godwits, 80 black-tailed godwits, three knot, 30 avocets, 100 dunlin and ten ringed plovers.
A Cetti's warbler and water rail were heard near the Oyster Fishery on Saturday, while by the Golfhouse were a rock pipit, 100 wigeon, three shoveler, 50 brent geese and 20 teal. Three yellowhammers perched on a bush near the Golfhouse and two clouded yellow butterflies were near the Oyster Fishery seawall.

At the country park on Saturday Steve Entwistle saw a song thrush and two blackcaps by the pond, while Shaun Bater also saw there 25 little egrets roosting, swallow, sparrowhawk, green woodpecker, brent goose, wigeon, teal, golden plover and grey plover.
Later a little owl was seen by the Maydays farmyard by Steve Entwistle. Michael Thorley had a singing chiffchaff, wren, five goldfinch and a robin in his East Mersea garden, with two chiffchaffs seen the day before.

On Friday 8th Steve Entwistle reported seeing in the Golfhouse area eight pintail, 13 shoveler, whitethroat, 8 long-tailed tits, two linnets, ten meadow pipits and two teal. Steve also saw three red-legged partridge  opposite Bocking Hall, a Sandwich tern flying over the Strood causeway, a guillemot off Coopers Beach and two mistle thrushes in the Cudmore Grove car park. Martin Cock saw four chiffchaffs in his West Mersea garden on Friday morning.

On Thursday 7th at Coopers Beach Martin Cock and Steve Entwistle watched a full summer plumaged red-throated diver off Coopers Beach late morning. Later Steve saw nine gannets - three flying to Colne Point and six others which flew west and landed on the sea near Colne Point. Also eight wigeon, two Mediterranean gulls, 450 golden plover, 12 black-tailed godwits, four bar-tailed godwits, dunlin while near the East Mersea church were a swallow and a chiffchaff.
Simon Patient saw a male brambling briefly on the seawall near the Golfhouse on Thursday morning also a willow emerald and clouded yellow on the seawall towards the Oyster Fishery.

At Coopers Beach on Wednesday 6th Martin Cock had a rewarding seawatch and saw offshore a great skua flying west, 14 spoonbills flying up the river, ringtail hen harrier and marsh harrier in-off the sea, common scoter and 200 wigeon. At Maydays on Wednesday afternoon Steve Entwistle saw a great spotted woodpecker, seven reed bunting, corn bunting, yellowhammer, two wheatear, three buzzard, eight Canada geese, five greylag geese and a barn owl flying close-by on the seawall.

Andy Field photographed one of the two wheatears still on the East Mersea Point beach on Tuesday 5th. Also seen at the park were two house martins with about twenty swallows, two mistle thrushes, three chiffchaffs, Sandwich tern and 13 pied wagtails in the Golfhouse horse paddock.
At Maydays farm on Tuesday a ringtail hen harrier was seen heading towards the Strood by Martin Cock, also seen were a kingfisher, wheatear, whinchat and seven red-legged partridges. Later Steve saw here two marsh harriers, buzzard and a three kestrels.

At Coopers Beach early Tuesday afternoon Steve Entwistle reported a possible skua, five wigeon, five meadow pipits, swallow, green woodpecker and seven common gulls. Later on the Shop Lane seawall there were ten swallows, stonechat, kingfisher, 200 avocets, five knot, two black-tailed godwits, Sandwich tern, three great crested grebes, 29 brent geese, two marsh harriers and eight Canada geese.

On Sunday 3rd a short-eared owl was being mobbed by carrion crows as it flew high west over the Strood Channel towards Ray Island. A stonechat perched briefly on an aerial on top of a caravan, two marsh harriers, buzzard, three brent geese and a family of seven mute swans were also seen while a Sandwich tern and common tern were fishing off the Dabchicks. A blackcap and three chiffchaffs were by Feldy View.

Martin Cock visited the Oyster Fishery and Reeveshall seawall on Sunday and reported eight Sandwich terns, four common terns, wheatear, stonechat, two chiffchaffs, two Cetti's warblers, kingfisher, ten snipe, marsh harrier, 67 avocets, brent goose and a water rail squealing in the borrowdyke.

Saturday, 2 October 2021

MERLIN OVER THE MARSHES

A merlin perched on a fence-post on Reeveshall marsh on Saturday 2nd. It then flew off to a flock of starlings that had been feeding in the field, chasing after one bird which managed to twist and turn and then dive to safety into a reedbed. When the merlin tried again to snatch a starling from the flock, there seemed to be another merlin also attacking the flock at the same time, although it happened so quickly and this falcon quickly vanished. The original merlin returned to the fence-post and perched there for half an hour, before again flying fast and low over the fields to Maydays.

The osprey was seen slowly flying up the Pyefleet Channel, circling over the water around the high tide period on Saturday morning. The bird was eventually lost to view as it kept drifting west up the Langenhoe creek. Three marsh harriers and three buzzards were also seen flying about. Four sand martins flew with eight swallows over Reeveshall while a leucistic starling was feeding in the flock of 1000 starlings.
Along the Pyefleet were a lone brent goose, 100 grey plover, 80 redshank, 30 dunlin, two knot while two golden plover flew off the fields.

At Cudmore Grove on Saturday Andy Field reported seeing two wheatears on Stone Point, three Sandwich terns, 150 grey plover, 40 turnstone, eight dunlin, the osprey seen over the Geedons, and two vocal Cetti's warblers -one by the park pond and another by the Golfhouse.

Steve Entwistle on Friday 30th saw 11 black-tailed godwits and four turnstone by the West Mersea Hard, then later at Maydays the osprey seen on the Geedons, four buzzards, green sandpiper, 3 kestrel and a yellowhammer.

On Thursday 29th in the Shop Lane to Ivy Dock area, Martin Cock reported the kingfisher, a few swallows with a sand martin, chiffchaff, green sandpiper, 20 brent geese and six common terns.
Along the Strood channel were 30 wigeon, four teal, 150 black-tailed godwits, 50 grey plover, common tern, a family of seven mute swans, buzzard, 15 meadow pipits and also four chiffchaffs by Feldy View.

At Coopers Beach on Wednesday 29th, Steve Entwistle saw two Sandwich terns, three Mediterranean gulls and six ringed plovers.

Andy Field found this ruff feeding around the muddy margin of the Reeveshall pool on Tuesday 28th. Also here were seven green sandpipers, a yellow wagtail and then a snipe in the afternoon. Andy in the morning also noted two ospreys, five buzzards, five marsh harriers, five kestrels, sparrowhawk, six meadow pipits, 12 swallows, four house martins, three Mediterranean gulls, little grebe, 167 grey plover, 37 golden plover, 15 dunlin and also a blackcap by Fishponds Wood.

On Tuesday afternoon, as well as the ruff on Reeveshall and the regular osprey perched behind Pewit Island, there were also ten Sandwich terns on the mud, six common terns, seven avocets, two marsh harriers, two buzzards, four swallows and a chiffchaff. A red squirrel was climbing through the trees at Fishponds Wood.

A pair of stonechats was by the reed bed along the Strood seawall along with two other stonechats on Tuesday morning. A snipe flew over the top of the field beside Feldy View, while a blackcap and five chiffchaffs were around Feldy View too. Along the Strood were 40 golden plover, 120 black-tailed godwits, 20 grey plover, sparrowhawk, 12 wigeon, 15 teal and two common terns.

Tuesday, 28 September 2021

HUNTING HAWK

 

A sparrowhawk flew around the trees behind the country park pond before landing high up in a willow tree on Monday 27th. After surveying the scene for a few minutes it flew fast and low as it hunted along the hedgerow. On the pond were two shoveler, four wigeon, four mallard, little egret and two teal.

Three brent geese were feeding on the edge of the mud near the Point on Monday morning. Also on the mud as the tide came in were thirty ringed plovers and two dunlin while a Sandwich tern was heard calling. On the Golfhouse pools were 20 wigeon, 100 redshank and ten lapwing. Fifteen linnets and a reed bunting were at the Point, two Cetti's warblers were singing from opposite sides of the grazing fields, while 20 swallows and a meadow pipit were seen near the Golfhouse.

Two clouded yellow butterflies were seen in the sunny but breezy conditions on Monday morning. This individual was the helice form with its creamy white upperwings rather than the usual yellow colour. Two painted ladies were also on the wing near the Point and seawall.
A red squirrel was seen scampering along the East Mersea road near the Dormy houses.

In the Pyefleet on Monday morning, Martin Cock walked the seawall near the Oyster Fishery and saw the osprey perched beside Pewit Island, also four Sandwich terns, four common terns, two Cetti's warblers, fifty swallows and a clouded yellow butterfly.

Later on Monday Steve Entwistle between the Golfhouse and the Oyster Fishery watched a great white egret flying up the river Colne early evening. Also noted were two mute swans, ten brent geese, two shoveler, 457 redshank, grey plover, 17 little egrets, dunlin, 12 teal, six wigeon, Sandwich tern, two common terns, six great crested grebes, fifty curlew, 200 oystercatchers and three meadow pipits.

Early evening from the the West Mersea Hard on Sunday 26th after walking 12kms from East Mersea Golfhouse back along the north side of the Island to home in Firs Chase. 
The highlight was watching two ospreys together briefly beside Pewit Island, one coming over to say hello to the youngster from the Scottish borders that has made this place home for the last three weeks. Six marsh harriers and four buzzards were seen, seven Sandwich terns, ten common terns and 12 Mediterranean gulls were in the Pyefleet. 
Waders noted were 100 black-tailed godwits, two bar-tailed godwits, four avocets, ten dunlin and a snipe flying over. By the Golfhouse were 75 wigeon and five teal while overhead were a sand martin and house martin in a flock of 50+ swallows.

Two wheatears were along the seawall on Sunday, this one at Maydays and another at Reeveshall. Twelve yellow wagtails were seen, many around the feet of the cows on Reeveshall. Six stonechats were by the Strood fields with one male by himself and the others on the other side of the field. Two Cetti's warblers were singing near the Oyster Fishery and a third one singing by the Strood reservoirs.

At Cudmore Grove on Sunday afternoon Steve Entwistle reported a few teal, wigeon and a gadwall on the park pond while in the bushes were a blackcap and four blackbirds. On the mud were 197 turnstone, 200 oystercatchers, lots of redshank, curlew, dunlin, 30 wigeon and 15 teal.

A scruffy corn bunting perched on a bush at Maydays on Saturday 25th before it flew off with a second corn bunting. Also two yellowhammers and ten reed buntings in bushes by the dyke.
The osprey was still perched on the fence-post on the ranges seawall behind Pewit Island. A peregrine was seen flying over the saltmarsh at the top end of the Pyefleet, five marsh harriers, five buzzards and two kestrels were also watched.

Two wheatears were on the Maydays seawall, two yellow wagtails, two swallows and fifteen meadow pipits flew over. Along the Pyefleet were four greenshank, two knot, green sandpiper heard calling, sixty golden plover, 200 grey plover, ten Mediterranean gulls, 30 dunlin and two ringed plovers. A leucistic starling was feeding with 500 starlings on Reeveshall. Two grey seals were resting on a pontoon in the Pyefleet.

On Saturday afternoon at Maydays Steve Entwistle reported seeing the osprey perched in the distance on a post for twenty minutes on the Geedons marsh. A corn bunting, yellowhammer, sparrowhawk, three kestrels, two marsh harriers, two grey herons and a little owl were also seen.

A kingfisher perched in the early Saturday morning mist at the country park pond, this photo snapped by Andy Field. Also noted there were the water rail heard calling, while offshore were 2 sandwich terns, 250 oystercatchers, 157 black-tailed godwit. A stonechat was at the Point, 30 meadow pipits seen, three Cetti's warblers heard, while at least six chiffchaffs and a lesser whitethroat were with a tit flock between the Golfhouse and the bus turning circle.

Saturday, 25 September 2021

CALLING CHIFFCHAFFS

There was an influx of chiffchaffs into the Feldy View cemetery on Friday 24th with at least ten birds doing lots of calling as they fed with a mixed tit flock of long-tailed tits, great tits and blue tits. The flock was busy feeding among the birch trees as well as along hedgerows and other trees. A female blackcap was the only other warbler seen here.

There was plenty of sunshine on Friday for the walk along the Strood seawall. Birds of note along the channel were a greenshank, 25 teal, three wigeon, fifty golden plover and forty grey plover.
Three male stonechats and a female were seen close to the seawall, twenty meadow pipits flew north-west over and two buzzards circled over Strood Hill fields.

In the Pyefleet the osprey was seen perched behind Pewit Island on Friday by Martin Cock, also seen along the seawall from the Oyster Fishery to Shop Lane were 100 swallows, house martin, stonechat and twenty meadow pipits flying west. A red squirrel was seen in Shop Lane.

Steve Entwistle reported seeing on Friday afternoon by the Golfhouse, two shoveler, seven teal, 30 wigeon, 16 black-tailed godwits, seven turnstone, a water vole in the dyke and a clouded yellow.

Two clouded yellow butterflies were seen along the inside of the Strood seawall on Friday, there was also one seen here the day before on Thursday - pictured above.

A fresh painted lady was sitting on a flowering ivy bush beside Feldy View on Thursday 23rd.

A wheatear perched on posts in the Strood channel on Thursday 23rd, also three stonechats seen inside the seawall. A merlin was watched flying fast down channel from the Strood causeway, scattering all the birds before it slowly banked round and without slowing down for a breather, it continued to power back high over the Strood road. The first merlin sighting on the island this autumn.

Along the channel on Thursday were eight avocets, 300 golden plover spooked by the merlin, two greenshank, four Mediterranean gulls, eight wigeon, 15 teal and 180 black-tailed godwits mainly by the Dabchicks. Ten meadow pipits flew over and four chiffchaffs were by Feldy View.

In Meeting Lane on Thursday morning Martin Cock saw a hobby and a blackcap, while in the afternoon the osprey was seen in the Pyefleet from Maydays also four buzzards. A chiffchaff was in his West Mersea garden.

Wigeon numbers are slowly building up for the winter at East Mersea with 75 on the saltmarsh pools by the Golfhouse on Wednesday 22nd, also twelve teal seen here too. On the east side of the Colne seven brent geese are also recent arrivals for the winter. Two Sandwich terns, a common tern, 36 avocets, 50 ringed plover and a bar-tailed godwit were seen while above were two buzzards over Ivy Farm and a house martin with 100 swallows.

On the park pond on Wednesday were two shoveler, two gadwall, 25 little egrets here with 36 more on the Golfhouse saltmarsh, a water rail squealed, three Cetti's warblers called from various locations, four yellow wagtails, ten meadow pipits, pair of blackcaps and four great spotted woodpeckers were the other highlights from the country park. There was also a nice display of at least 13 clouded yellows enjoying the various yellow flowers like bristly ox-tongue and bird's foot trefoil on the grazing fields and seawall.

Martin Cock walked the seawall between the Oyster Fishery and East Mersea Point on Wednesday and noted seven brent geese, 100 wigeon, five Sandwich terns, kingfisher, whitethroat, lesser whitethroat, four Cetti's warblers, four yellow wagtails, 100 swallows and several chiffchaffs.

A Mediterranean gull was in the Strood Channel on Tuesday 21st, while fifty black-tailed godwits were feeding by the Dabchicks. A stonechat was perched on a bush by the dyke, fifty swallows and a sand martin were feeding over the fields and perching on the maize crop, also 700 starlings fed in the grass field, a reed warbler called from reeds, two blackcaps and six chiffchaffs were in Feldy View and a sparrowhawk passed over.

The osprey was seen in the Pyefleet channel perched on a post in front of Pewit Island on Tuesday morning by Shaun Bater, also noted from the Shop Lane seawall were 17 avocets, green sandpiper, black-tailed godwit and two green woodpeckers by the wood.

Martin Cock also watched the osprey on Tuesday fishing in front of the Oyster Fishery for about ten minutes before it flew back to the fence behind Pewit Island. Also two Sandwich terns, two common terns, six clouded yellows and a brimstone butterfly.

Steve Entwistle reported very little on Tuesday afternoon in the Cross Lane and Waldegraves area with 82 ringed plovers, lots of oystercatchers, curlews, a few Mediterranean gulls, common gulls and eight great black-backed gulls.

A willow warbler and chiffchaff were seen in the Firs Chase garden on Tuesday while in Shop Lane near the pub were a Mediterranean gull, kestrel and a clouded yellow.

A jay perched on a bench in Feldy View on Monday 20th.
Along the Strood channel were 200 golden plover, 20 grey plover, 50 black-tailed godwits, one knot and six Mediterranean gulls. A wheatear was on the seawall, a pair of stonechat was by the dyke, two meadow pipits flew over, thirty swallows flew over the maize, while a buzzard and reed warbler were also noted.

Two chiffchaffs were in Ron Harvey's garden in Whittaker Way on Monday afternoon.

Sunday, 19 September 2021

DOUBLE OSPREY SHOW

Two ospreys were on show along the Pyefleet Channel on Sunday 19th. This bird flew slowly down the channel, circling over the water as it looked for fish. It drifted close to the first osprey which was perched on a post eating a fish but there was no interaction and the bird flew back up the Pyefleet. After half an hour it returned and continued flying north-east over to the Colne.

The first osprey seen on Sunday was this bird that has now been present in the Colne estuary for nearly three weeks. It perched on a fence-post on the nearby Langenhoe army ranges behind Pewit Island, eating a fish. It seemed to spend most of the middle part of Sunday perched on this post.

Also on Langenhoe were three marsh harriers including one with red wing-tags which is presumed to be the same bird seen a week earlier, that is a juvenile female born this year in north-west Norfolk.
Fifteen common terns were in the Pyefleet, while 25 stock doves, four yellow wagtails with cattle, buzzard and a wheatear were on Reeveshall. At least nine clouded yellow butterflies were alongside the Reeveshall and Maydays seawall, but just one painted lady.

A yellowhammer was at Maydays on Sunday, and there was a greenshank in the saltmarsh by Bowers Hall farm.
Along the Strood seawall were a whinchat, wheatear, fifty swallows, 25 golden plover, 300 redshank, greenshank and a marsh harrier.

A small copper butterfly rested on a plant on top of the Strood seawall late afternoon on Sunday.

At Rewsalls lake on Sunday Martin Cock noted 152 redshank, 28 turnstone, nine ringed plover, dunlin, black-tailed godwit, common sandpiper, two little grebe and two teal.
A wheatear was seen on the Waldegraves seawall by Sarah Thorley early Sunday morning.

Steve Entwistle noted at Cudmore Grove on Sunday afternoon great spotted woodpecker, green woodpecker, Cetti's warbler, shoveler, 22 wigeon, four gadwall, ten swallows, six blackbirds and a dead adder on the central track.

This wheatear was photographed on Saturday 18th by Andy Field at East Mersea Point.

As well as the wheatear, Andy noted 20 linnets at the Point, also four yellow wagtails and two Cetti's warblers near the Golfhouse, while near Ivy Dock were 62 dunlin, 176 black-tailed godwits, six bar-tailed godwits, 140 turnstone, 100 curlew, 20 knot, 100 grey plover, 150 redshank, 126 ringed plover and six Sandwich terns. A sparrowhawk was also seen in the area, as were 20 wigeon, 12 teal and two shoveler.

At Maydays on Saturday afternoon the osprey was seen again in the Pyefleet by Steve Entwistle. Also 25 chaffinches feeding in Haycocks Lane, two yellowhammers and two reed buntings seen by the seawall,

Birds seen at Coopers Beach during the Saturday high tide with the water flooding in through the old seawall included 320 golden plover, 50 ringed plover, 20 little egrets, two Mediterranean gulls, two teal and a little grebe. Smaller birds seen were a blackcap, chiffchaff, forty linnets and 25 swallows heading west.

On Friday 17th at the Rewsalls marshes for the high tide roost were common sandpiper, two bar-tailed godwit, eight black-tailed godwits, 114 redshank, 35 turnstone, two dunlin and three little grebes
Thirty meadow pipits and forty swallows with a sand martin flew west along the coastline. Three buzzards were also seen.

Steve Entwistle noted from the Coopers Beach side of Rewsalls on Friday, two willow warblers, lesser whitethroat, whitethroat, 25 golden plover, 120 starling, 100+ linnets, bar-tailed godwit and three meadow pipits.

Six wheatears were on a ploughed field to the west of the Youth Camp with another two on the beach for the second day. In two gull roosts bordering the Youth Camp were forty Mediterranean gulls.
A hobby was seen flying fast over the top of Cross Lane in West Mersea, while a buzzard was mobbed by crows over Firs Chase.

Later on Friday Steve visited Cudmore Grove and saw a pale-bellied brent goose with two dark-bellied brent on the east side of the Colne, also Cetti's warbler by the Golfhouse, tufted duck, wigeon, 18 Mediterranean gulls, ten grey plover, 20 turnstone, nine black-tailed godwits and a coot with three very new chicks.

Chris Mole reported seeing a red squirrel in his Strood Close garden on Friday

A collection of little owl pellets from Michael Thorley's East Mersea garden near Meeting Lane. Also pictured is a slightly larger darker pellet, pictured beside the ruler which was thought to be a carrion crow's pellet consisting of blackberries and insect exoskeletons.

Just off the Island in Peldon, Jack Hoy found this dotterel beside a farm track trotting ahead of his car on Friday 17th and managed to take this picture of it with his phone.