Saturday, 1 March 2014
Spent the morning at Rainham Marshes. Started off walking the seawall as I was there before the reserve opens. I walked to the serin mound and back. I found an area which a number of pipits were favouring along with two Skylarks. Most of the dozen or so pipits were Meadow, with at least two Rock Pipits, no Water Pipit though. Tricky to photograph as they were regularly spooked by the passing walkers, cyclists and dog walkers. The two Skylarks were less jumpy and I managed a couple of images.
Walking around the reserve, the sun would occasionally appear and there was only a light breeze albeit a chilly one! Lots of water had the reserve looking superb, with still plenty of wildfowl present. Along the northern boardwalk a single female Bearded Tit was 'pinging' away and regularly flying above the reeds, at times quite a distance above the reeds, before dropping back in. She was moving through the reeds quite widely, but regularly showed well in the reed tops, not particularly close to the boardwalk though. Reed Buntings, Cetti's Warblers and Water Rails were all seen while I spent an hour or so hoping to get a photograph.
She would every now and then appear close enough to the boardwalk for a picture, but frustratingly I wasn't getting a clear image through the reeds. She did show well though and I was having brilliant views of my first Bearded Tit at Rainham, in fact she was the first I have seen in the London area, am I a lightweight, or what!
Anyway, it happened there she was and I had a clear view, I fired off two shots, well three actually, but she wasn't in the third one! All in all a great morning.