Wednesday, 1 December 2021

CUDMORE WILDFOWL

At Cudmore Grove country park on Tuesday 30th two pairs of shoveler were on the borrowdyke with another dozen on the saltmarsh pools by the Point, along with 70 wigeon there. On the nearby mud as the tide receded waders of interest were 150 knot, 100 dunlin, 30 ringed plover, four avocets also a Mediterranean gull. A sparrowhawk flew over the saltmarsh, a rock pipit called nearby, two male stonechats and a Cetti's warbler were in the grazing fields and 12 great crested grebes were in the Colne.

A new information board with Richard Allen's excellent bird illustrations has been placed in the new bird hide at the park to help identify the wildfowl on the nearby pond.
On Tuesday the main ducks on the park pond were ten mallard and 25 teal.

At Maydays on Tuesday Martin Cock reported a peregrine, five marsh harriers, six red-breasted mergansers, a great northern diver in the Pyefleet, stonechat, rock pipit and seven corn buntings.

A male sparrowhawk has been a regular visitor to the Firs Chase garden recently, here staring at one of the bird feeders.

After about ten minutes of waiting, the sparrowhawk flew off to the neighbours across the road.
Earlier a goldcrest was seen in bushes in the garden feeding with a mixed tit flock.

Along the Strood seawall on Monday 28th good numbers of duck were resting along the channel with 250 wigeon and 350 teal counted. Also ten Mediterranean gulls, 40 avocets and 70 black-tailed godwits along the channel while a stonechat and ten linnets were on the fields.

In the Pyefleet at Maydays on Monday a great northern diver, female goldeneye, seven marsh harriers, six red-breasted mergansers and a tufted duck were seen by Martin Cock.

A chilly but sunny walk on Sunday 28th along the north side of the Island provided views of lots of waders gathering on the mud after the tide dropped. Here at the top end of the Pyefleet near Bower Hall farm, there was a marsh harrier, sparrowhawk, ten black-tailed godwits, fifty teal and 20 linnets of note. At Reeveshall a short-eared owl was flushed off the seawall, as it sheltered from the cold northerly wind. 

Along the Pyefleet was a great northern diver, ten red-breasted mergansers, 80 avocets, 100 golden plover while at Maydays were two stonechats, yellowhammer and 20 reed buntings. The black-throated diver was still in the Strood channel, also here were 200 dunlin, 300 golden plover, a marsh harrier while a noisy flock of 1000 brent geese flew off the fields on the Peldon side.

The highlight of a walk along the Maydays and Reeveshall seawall on Saturday 27th was a ringtail hen harrier flying low eastwards over the fields, also five marsh harriers, most on Langenhoe. In the Pyefleet were ten red-breasted mergansers, 190 shelduck, 3 greylag geese, 145 avocets, 300 golden plover and nine knot. In the fields were 100 chaffinches, ten corn buntings, 30 reed buntings, two stonechats and fifty linnets. A big flock of 2000+ wood pigeons was seen in the air over Shop Lane having flown up from the maize stubble near there.

The black-throated diver was still present on Friday 26th in the Strood channel near the last of the boat moorings, seen by Martin Cock.

The female stonechat was seen still feeding along the Strood seawall on Thursday 25th.

The big excitement on Thursday for some lucky few was the sight of a white stork flying over the heads of four observers including Steve Entwistle and Trevor Hearn. The bird appeared to have come from the Strood Hill direction flying north-west over the seawall towards Copt Hall. It is assumed this is the same bird that has been seen in the Stanway and Abberton reservoirs for the last few weeks. 
By chance Neil Mortimer also managed to see the white stork from his Strood Close garden near the Firs Chase caravan park late morning, as it was being mobbed by gulls and crows.
This is the first record of white stork on the Island. 

The black-throated diver was still feeding among the boat moorings in the Strood channel on Thursday. Also in the channel were 400 wigeon, 300 teal, 45 avocets, 500 golden plover, two ringed plover while two marsh harriers, sparrowhawk and three grey herons were seen too. In the fields were 500 wood pigeons, 300 starlings, 50 linnets, 20 skylarks and three reed buntings

Three corn buntings were also seen by Steve Entwistle along the Strood seawall, and later from the Bower Hall seawall he saw ten grey partridges and at Maydays seven red-legged partridges, redwing and meadow pipit were reported.

The appearance of the December moth in the trap in Firs Chase garden on Wednesday 24th, is probably the last moth of the year to be recorded here, caught on the 78th night of trapping this year.

Wednesday, 24 November 2021

STROOD DIVER

A black-throated diver was photographed in the Strood Channel on Wednesday 24th by Andy Field. The diver was first seen the previous day and appeared to favour the area around the last boat moorings up the channel.

Another of Andy's photos of the black-throated diver showing well as it fed along the Strood channel.
Also along the Strood on Wednesday, a peregrine, bar-tailed godwit, buzzard and 12 corn buntings were seen by Martin Cock. 

Offshore from St Peters on Wednesday were three common scoter, a red-breasted merganser, 12 great crested grebes, 400+ cormorants flying back to Abberton reservoir, 8 bar-tailed godwits, 9 black-tailed godwits and a Mediterranean gull, while on the marsh were two rock pipits, reed bunting and a song thrush. A great northern diver was seen offshore from Seaview Avenue by Martin Cock.

Andy got news today that a colour-ringed Mediterranean gull seen earlier in the Strood on 15th September had been ringed in Langstone Harbour, Hampshire three years earlier on 25th June 2018.

The black-throated diver was first seen along the Strood Channel on a sunny and still Tuesday 23rd in perfect viewing conditions. It was diving regularly as it headed up channel as the tide came in, before feeding back down channel again. At one point it caught a fish which was immediately stolen from it by a marauding herring gull that had been waiting nearby.

This is the first diver I've seen in the Strood Channel, although great northern diver has been recorded here some time ago. This black-throated diver is presumed to be the same bird seen by Steve Entwistle off the Esplanade the previous afternoon on Monday 22nd.

Also seen along the Strood seawall on Tuesday were a short-eared owl hunting over Ray Island, three marsh harriers, sparrowhawk, 25 avocets, 300 golden plover and 700 brent geese feeding on the Peldon side. In the fields were 1500 wood pigeons, 100+ stock doves, 500 starlings, 50 linnets, stonechat and a song thrush in a bush. A late common darter was seen flying over the seawall and Strood channel.
Later in the day two siskins headed north beside Shop Lane in East Mersea.

On Monday 22nd along the Strood channel were 150 wigeon, 150 teal, 30 avocets, Mediterranean gull, 300 golden plover and 400 dunlin, also 700 brent geese feeding on the Peldon side. Large numbers of birds were feeding on the maize stubble field below Whittaker Way with 1000 wood pigeons, 20+ stock doves, 500 starlings, also a sparrowhawk, song thrush and 70 linnets seen. In Firs Chase a male blackcap was feeding on honeysuckle berries - the first garden sighting for this winter. A late red admiral flew along the Strood seawall.

Steve Entwistle enjoyed watching both a red-throated diver and a black-throated diver on Monday afternoon from Seaview Avenue.
At East Mersea Michael Thorley reported a tawny owl and little owl both calling in his neighbour's garden of Teresa Parkins near Meeting Lane.

The snow bunting first seen on the 8th November along the Reeveshall seawall was still present in the same area on Sunday 21st. It was easier to see at the time of high tide as it had to feed along the bottom of the seawall, however it was quite flighty and wouldn't allow you to get very close.

Earlier on Sunday over Shop Lane was a mixed flock of 300 rooks and jackdaws a late common darter, while a pair of stonechats was on a fence beside the seawall. A sparrowhawk and 100 avocets were seen Reeveshall just before the high tide.

The high tide on Sunday 21st covered most of the saltmarsh at Maydays and Bower Hall where fifty teal were feeding, also six red-breasted mergansers in the Pyefleet. Three marsh harriers and three buzzards were seen, also ten little egrets and ten grey partridge flew across a field at Bower Hall.

The tide was starting to drop on Sunday afternoon along the Strood Channel with this redshank ready to start feeding, as were 20 black-tailed godwits and 25 avocets. Inside the seawall were a stonechat, 70 linnets, 400 starlings and four rock pipits beside the seawall.

Two marsh harriers were seen flying over the fields near Meeting Lane on Sunday by Michael Thorley.
Steve Entwistle counted 49 sanderling off Waldegraves on Sunday and nine long-tailed tits in Cross Lane.

The field corner of game-cover at Maydays had lots of finches and buntings feeding on Saturday 20th with at least two bramblings, 100+ chaffinches, 30+ reed buntings, four yellowhammers and a stonechat while two Cetti's warblers called along the dyke. In fields behind Reeveshall was a big feeding flock of 2000 wood pigeons.

Along the Pyefleet on Saturday were three red-breasted mergansers, 80 avocets, 500 golden plover, snipe, greylag goose flying, ten mute swans, 100 wigeon, 100 teal, 70 black-tailed godwits and 100 knot, also two marsh harriers flying over Langenhoe.

A black brant was feeding with 700 dark-bellied brent geese on a wheat field near Rewsalls Farm on Friday 19th. The brant is pictured here in the middle with its head down and facing left.

The brent geese have been concentrating their feeding on this one wheat field, as surrounding fields have no crops in them yet. At one point the geese flew off and landed in the nearby boating lake for a while before going back to feed.
Beside some game cover were two yellowhammers, ten reed buntings, ten chaffinches and 18 linnets, also two buzzards in one field.

On the Rewsalls marshes were two greenshank, 20 black-tailed godwits, 15 ringed plover and 35 Mediterranean gulls while offshore were a great northern diver, 45 great crested grebes and four sanderling.

Offshore from the Esplanade on Friday two eider and a guillemot were seen by Steve Entwistle, also the great northern diver and 37 sanderling off Waldegraves.

At Maydays on Friday morning Martin Cock noted at least two brambling, two stonechats, red-breasted merganser and a large flock of mixed finches and buntings.
A male golden pheasant was a colourful surprise for Steve Entwistle, seen from the Bower Hall seawall on Friday.
There was a report of ten snow buntings seen at East Mersea on Friday but no further details.

Thursday, 18 November 2021

BLACK BRANT WITH THE BRENT

A black brant was feeding among a flock of 800 dark-bellied brent geese on Thursday 18th on a wheat field behind the East Mersea boating lake. 

At one point the whole brent goose flock were startled from the field by something and all the geese landed on the lake for twenty minutes for a bathe and preen. They then flew back to the field and continued their feeding on the winter wheat crop.

On the old Rewsalls marshes and the side lake a greenshank was seen briefly and heard calling, 125 curlews, 60 golden plovers, 18 ringed plovers, 30 dunlin, 20 black-tailed godwits, 11 little grebes and 35 Mediterranean gulls were some of the birds present at high tide. Offshore were 22 great crested grebes.

Several small birds were feeding in the game cover crops near Rewsalls including 10 reed buntings, a yellowhammer, ten chaffinches, 20 house sparrows and a fieldfare, while a Cetti's warbler was singing from bushes behind the Youth Camp beach. A sparrowhawk was seen passing low along a hedgeline.
Two buzzards were in a field west of East Mersea church and a male marsh harrier drifted north over the church.

At Maydays farm on Thursday four pintail, two buzzards, two marsh harriers and a yellowhammer were seen by Martin Cock.

On Wednesday 17th there were about 600 brent geese feeding in the wheat field behind the boating lake. On the Rewsalls marshes at high tide were 70 curlew, 20 ringed plover, 45 golden plover, 30 black-tailed godwits, three snipe and 16 Mediterranean gulls. A female marsh harrier flew over the back of the marshes and a buzzard soared over Rewsalls farm. A Cetti's warbler was singing at the back of the Youth Camp beach.

The warm sunshine on the Wednesday saw a late swallow hurriedly flying west along the shore near the Youth Camp. There was also a red admiral and common darter seen at the Youth Camp enjoying the sun. Two siskins and ten goldfinches were feeding in alders near the Youth Camp.
Offshore was a great northern diver and 58 great crested grebes.

Twenty mallard were seen beside the fishing lakes at Waldegraves holiday park, also a little egret, redshank, 20+ moorhens and two coots while a siskin and a little owl were heard calling.

Cross Lane on Wednesday was looking very autumnal where a chiffchaff was heard calling at the south end, also a song thrush seen here too.

Steve Entwistle at Cudmore Grove on Wednesday morning noted a mistle thrush in the car park and a Cetti's warbler at the park pond while at Maydays in the afternoon he saw two brambling, a knot, two greylag geese and a little owl.

At Coopers Beach on Tuesday 16th a gannet, common scoter, 55 great crested grebes, 123 wigeon, 99 curlew, 18 mallards, 20 turnstone and a rock pipit were seen by Steve Entwistle. At Maydays Martin Cock reported a short-eared owl, buzzard, marsh harrier, four stonechats, red-breasted merganser, and two corn buntings among a mixed finch and bunting flock. Later on Tuesday at Maydays Steve saw two yellowhammer, 8 linnets, 30 avocets and two knot.

On Monday 15th from Coopers Beach a male goldeneye was seen on the sea among some of the 42 great crested grebes. Also a great northern diver, female common scoter and a gannet offshore while gathered on the shingle island off from Waldegraves were 350 cormorants. A flock of fifty siskins flew north over the Coopers caravan site while a rock pipit, four meadow pipits and ten reed buntings also noted.

At Maydays on Monday a pintail, two stonechats, two siskins and two marsh harriers were seen by Martin Cock.

Walking the north side of the Island on Sunday 14th produced views along the Pyefleet of a peregrine, 1000 golden plover, 1000 dunlin, 100 avocets, 50 knot and two shoveler. A leucistic starling was with 200 starlings on Reeveshall as was a buzzard and 30 linnets. A red-legged partridge was near the Bower Hall seawall while along the Strood were 100 wigeon, 50 teal, eight little grebes, 300 golden plover, stonechat and a marsh harrier.

A male hen harrier was seen quartering the Maydays and Bower Hall saltmarsh on Saturday 13th. The bird was only spotted after hearing the alarm calls of a redshank as the hen harrier passed it by. It was watched for several minutes as it skimmed low over the marsh on its west-ward meandering way to the Strood, although it stopped short when it dropped down on the marsh. A short-eared owl was nearly stood on the Maydays seawall as it waited till the last moment before taking off and crossing over the Pyefleet to Langenhoe. At Maydays two marsh harriers, two buzzards, two red-breasted mergansers, 115 shelduck, 1000 dunlin and 300 knot were of note. 

Small birds of interest from the Maydays seawall were a stonechat, lesser redpoll, brambling, 30 reed buntings, ten corn buntings, 2 yellowhammers and 30 chaffinches - most of the birds beside a game crop.

There was the interesting sight of a grey seal not actually grey in colour, resting on a pontoon in the Pyefleet at Maydays on Saturday. Many common seals round Mersea have an orange brown coat due to oxides in the mud and it obviously happens to grey seals as well - as shown by this individual, but not something I've noticed previously. A common seal was also lounging on a nearby pontoon - looking more grey in colour than the grey seal!

Friday, 12 November 2021

STONECHATS BY SEAWALL

Three stonechats were beside the country park seawall on Friday 12th, a pair by the corner near the Point and a female along the edge of the nearby grazing field. Not much different elsewhere around the park on a blustery and grey morning with the tide out. A kestrel was by the Point and a Cetti's warbler sang by the park pond.
Grazing the Golfhouse paddock were 100 wigeon, 8 shoveler were on the saltmarsh pools also 100 brent geese seen, while four great crested grebes were in the river and 70 golden plover flew over.

A mistle thrush was feeding in a horse paddock to the north of the country park on Friday morning.

In the Feldy View on Thursday 11th two bramblings flew over calling and fifteen blackbirds were feeding in various bushes in the area. Across the Strood channel a peregrine flew low as it headed over to Ray Island, scattering all the waders and wildfowl in its path. In the channel were 280 wigeon, 200 teal, 150 golden plover, 20 avocet, a great crested grebe and 13 greylag geese flying down channel.

Two siskin flew over the seawall calling, two Cetti's warblers were singing in the dyke from opposite corners of the big grass field, a stonechat and 25 linnets were seen in the fields.

Twenty-five black tailed godwits were feeding along the Strood channel on Wednesday 10th, also 20 avocets, 27 shelduck, 100 brent geese, 100 wigeon, 100 teal and a great crested grebe.
In the fields were 300 starlings, two buzzards, 40 linnets, a stonechat and also two song thrushes in bushes by the seawall. In Feldy View four redwing, 15 blackbirds and a song thrush were seen.

Four little egrets were seen on Tuesday 9th during a morning walk along the Strood seawall. Other birds seen were 36 avocets, 300 golden plover, ten ringed plover, 30 black-tailed godwits, buzzard, sparrowhawk, two stonechats, three rock pipits, 30 linnets and there were also 260+ cormorants seen heading to Abberton reservoir, also a lesser redpoll flying over Feldy View.

A black-throated diver was seen by Steve Entwistle on Tuesday, flying past the Esplanade and then dropping onto the sea off Seaview. This was first seen from Old Hall by Colin Mackenzie Grieve, who also saw a red-throated diver at the mouth of the Mersea Quarters and three goosanders flying south-west from Mersea. A great white egret was seen flying to Cobmarsh Island from Old Hall by Paul Rowe. There was no sign of the guillemot seen the previous day in the Mersea Quarters by Jon Clark from Old Hall.

A snow bunting was discovered feeding along the Reeveshall seawall with some meadow pipits on Monday 8th, whilst undertaking the monthly WeBS count. The snow bunting stayed out of view at the bottom of the seawall and was flushed on three occasions as I walked along, showing the big white wing-bars when it flew.

Birds seen during the Monday afternoon high tide were four snipe, 1000 dunlin, 1000 knot, 100 black-tailed godwits, 3 bar-tailed godwits, 75 turnstones roosting on a raft, 145 avocets, on the fields were 900 golden plover and 286 lapwing while nine marsh harriers were gathering late afternoon on Langenhoe for the roost.

Two water rails called from the dyke near the Oyster Fishery, five rock pipits were along the saltmarsh, three stonechats were on the park fields, as were most of the 95 curlew seen, 100 teal and 16 shoveler were by the Golfhouse pools.

At Maydays on Monday, Steve Entwistle saw two peregrines on posts on Reeveshall, and a brambling feeding with a mixed finch flock in Haycocks Lane.

Two lesser redpolls were feeding on Martin Cock's garden bird feeder in West Mersea on Monday morning.

A photograph of a leucistic greenfinch taken by David Nicholls when it visited his garden bird feeder in Queen Ann Road in mid September and into early October.

Sunday, 7 November 2021

BRAMBLING VISITORS

A brambling feeding on rowan berries at Cudmore Grove was photographed by Steve Entwistle on Sunday 7th. These two pictures taken off the back of the camera.

The female brambling was very confiding as it fed on the rowan tree in the car park along with a redwing and several blackbirds. A  brambling has also been seen feeding in a mixed finch flock at Blue Row.
Also at Cudmore on Sunday 25 common scoter offshore, a sanderling along the shore and a stonechat in the grazing fields were seen by Steve, while 27 skylarks were seen at Dawes Lane.

A driver of a stranded car had to be rescued during the high tide at the Strood by the lifeboat on Sunday. Sadly it's not an uncommon sight these days to see the lifeboat having to come to the rescue of car-drivers stuck in the high tide.
Birds noted during a walk along the Strood seawall at high tide were 200 brent geese, 30 avocet, 100 teal, marsh harrier, two buzzards, two rock pipits, 300 starling and 50 linnets.

A lesser redpoll photographed by Andy Field on Saturday 6th was feeding with three others on the birch trees in Feldy View. Later the brambling was seen for a third day feeding in the mixed finch flock at Blue Row, while a visit to Cudmore Grove by Andy produced a velvet scoter off the park seen flying to Point Clear, also four gannets, 20 common scoter, rock pipit and three sanderling.
Off Victoria Esplanade 92 sanderling were seen by Steve Entwistle.

At Maydays on Saturday 6th the kingfisher was perched on the seawall sluice, a stonechat was by the dyke, on the Reeveshall fields were 400 golden plover, 2000 wood pigeons, two buzzards and two marsh harriers. In the Pyefleet were two male pintail, 80 avocets, red-breasted merganser, 100 knot, 700 dunlin and 80 shelduck.

A black brant was feeding with 300 dark-bellied brent geese on the submerged saltmarsh during the high tide in front of the Firs caravan park on Friday 5th.
Along the Strood seawall were three marsh harriers, three buzzards, ten Mediterranean gulls, 25 avocets, stonechat and a singing Cetti's warbler. The leucistic starling was feeding with 500 starlings on the cut maize field and 20 blackbirds feeding in bushes by the dyke.

A stock dove was singing by the Firs Caravan park on Friday while overhead were passing a couple of flocks in total of 50 fieldfare with ten redwing flying north-west. A brambling flew over Feldy View calling, as did four siskin while five lesser redpolls were feeding on the birch trees.

A big passage of wood pigeons was seen by Martin Cock flying west first thing Friday over West Mersea. Later on Friday morning Martin noted at Cudmore two siskin, mistle thrush, five sanderling and a late clouded yellow butterfly. The brambling was seen again in the mixed finch flock feeding at Blue Row for its second day.

The dredger Sospan started to recharge the beaches at the entrance to the Mersea Harbour on Friday, blowing a jet of shingle onto Packing Shed Island to slow down the effects of on-going coastal erosion.
During a visit to the St Peters beach a stonechat was seen near the boardwalk, also a reed bunting and two linnets in the sueda bushes.
A red-throated diver was seen drifting in the Blackwater towards the Esplanade by Colin Mackenzie-Grieve from Old Hall, also three peregrines sparring together off the east end of Old Hall over the estuary.

A rainbow showed over the back of the country park grazing fields on Thursday 4th. At the park were seen a buzzard, fieldfare, two siskins and ten blackbirds, while two Cetti's warblers were singing and a pair of stonechat was in the grazing fields.

A high tide covered the saltmarsh beside the Point and the Golfhouse pools forcing six snipe into the air, also seen 50 black-tailed godwits, 20 linnets, ten shoveler, 100 brent geese, 100 wigeon and 70 teal.

At Coopers Beach on Thursday, Steve Entwistle reported eight great crested grebes offshore while on the Rewsalls marshes were two snipe, 20 teal and a grey plover during the very high tide.
At Blue Row a brambling was found by Steve feeding in a mixed finch flock of 20+ greenfinches, goldfinches and chaffinches on a cut sunflower field, also two red-legged partridges.

Martin Cock reported 80 redwings flying west over his West Mersea house on Thursday early morning.

Wednesday, 3 November 2021

SHORELINE SANDERLING

A flock of 28 sanderling was feeding along the shoreline by the East Mersea Youth Camp on Wednesday 3rd.

The sanderling were scurrying along the beach chasing the waves down the beach before running back up the beach again ahead of the next wave.

A second flock of sanderling of 40 birds was seen roosting on the shingle island offshore from Waldegraves caravan park.
Also on this island late morning was a black brant with 52 brent geese - possibly the same bird that was here last winter. A large gathering of 200 cormorants jostled for space with lots of gulls and a few oystercatchers.

The high tide covered most of the Rewsalls marshes, coming through several breaches in the old seawall. Offshore were 20 great crested grebes.

A flock of 130 curlew roosted on a sandy spit in the lake beside the boating lake along with some redshank here. On the marshes and lake were two greenshank, four snipe, 12 little egrets, 15 little grebes, six ringed plover and thirty turnstone. A marsh harrier flew over the nearby Youth Camp.

On Tuesday 2nd on the Rewsall marshes were a kingfisher, two greenshank, 100 golden plover, 20 black-tailed godwits, ten Mediterranean gulls and rock pipit. A buzzard and nine stock doves flew over the nearby fields, while 19 great crested grebes were on the sea.

At Cudmore Grove on Wednesday a brambling was watched by Steve Entwistle as it fed on berries in the car park.

Birds on the main Waldegraves fishing lake on Tuesday were six mallard, two coots and five moorhens.
On the offshore shingle island were 52 sanderling, 60 oystercatchers and a passing flock of 300 cormorants.

A siskin stopped off by one of the smaller fishing lakes at Waldegraves on Tuesday, also a buzzard nearby and a sparrowhawk over Cross Lane. A small white butterfly was a late sighting in Cross Lane on Tuesday, also a comma seen too and 25+ passage red admirals heading west during the morning.

A grey wagtail was feeding along the flooded footpath at the bottom end of Cross Lane on Tuesday seen just after mid-day but not later in the afternoon. Steve Entwistle visited the area in mid afternoon and noted five long-tailed tits and six pied wagtails, while offshore were 15 great crested grebes.

Martin Cock noted on Tuesday two stonechats on the park's grazing fields, a Cetti's warbler showed well by Ivy Dock, a siskin heard calling and three clouded yellows seen near the Oyster Fishery.
Near Shop Lane two mistle thrushes and a buzzard flew over the field behind the pub on Tuesday afternoon.

A speckled wood butterfly was enjoying some sheltered morning sunshine near the Firs Caravan park on Monday 1st.
Birds seen along the Strood seawall included forty Mediterranean gulls, two buzzards, marsh harrier, two sparrowhawks, stonechat, 50 linnets and 18 avocets.

At Maydays on Monday afternoon, a great white egret was seen on Reeveshall by Martin Cock, also two buzzards, marsh harrier, ten great crested grebes and seven red-breasted mergansers.

A brown hare was at Maydays, pausing for a moment before sprinting away on Sunday 31st.
During a walk along the seawall seven red-breasted mergansers were in the Pyefleet, also here were 80 shelduck, 30 knot and 20 avocets. Four marsh harriers, three buzzards, stonechat, green sandpiper, snipe, Cetti's warbler, ten meadow pipits and a red-legged partridge were seen while several large flocks totalling 350+ cormorants were flying back to the Abberton roost.

Along the Reeveshall seawall on Saturday 30th there were four marsh harriers, two buzzards, 100 avocets, 45 knot, 140 shelduck, 12 great crested grebes, 80 greylag geese over Langenhoe, 300 starlings including a pale leucistic bird, 20 linnets, 20 meadow pipits and also a goldcrest in Fishponds Wood.

At Maydays on Saturday a kingfisher, lesser redpoll, two marsh harriers and a green sandpiper were seen by Martin Cock.

On Friday along the Strood channel were 150 golden plover, 17 avocets, 25 black-tailed godwits, marsh harrier, buzzard, sparrowhawk, two rock pipits and 25 linnets. A siskin was noted in Firs Chase on Friday morning.

Two great white egrets were seen flying along the Feldy seawall on Thursday 28th during a walk along the Strood seawall. Also noted were 200 wigeon, 100 teal, 50 dunlin, 100 brent geese, 18 avocets, 10 ringed plover, Cetti's warbler singing, 70 linnets and two stonechats. A buzzard flew low over Firs Chase being chased by carrion crows.

At least one red squirrel has been seen in the Firs Chase garden every day, with two seen chasing each other round the cedar tree on Monday 1st.