Monday, 16 December 2013


Steve Grimwade kindly passed these photos to me after his very successful Swallow Birding boat trip into the Blackwater from West Mersea on Saturday 14th aboard Ray Hempstead's Sorcerer boat.
This female long-tailed duck was seen near Packing Shed Island off West Mersea.

Three great northern divers were seen in Salcott Channel, pictured above, with another two seen in Tollesbury Channel.

Great northern diver pictured above.

 This shag was seen on a buoy in Salcott Channel with a large ring on its leg. Steve is currently trying to discover where it was ringed - possibly the Isle of May on the east coast of Scotland.

Other birds seen during the four hour trip were 7 common scoter, smew, 17 red-breasted merganser, black-throated diver, 32 great crested grebes, 12 marsh harriers, 3 hen harriers, 2 common buzzards, peregrine and 30 bar-tailed godwits ( including one in summer plumage). By the Strood Channel was the yellow-legged gull and 12 ruff.

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