Friday, 2 January 2015

New Year's Day

One of my New Year Resolutions, and there are a few! is to spend more time on my local RSPB reserve, Rainham Marshes. This is fortunate, as purely accidentally, it coincides with a bird race on the reserve during 2015. More of which you can see here.

Today was dull and overcast throughout the day, but, mild at around 11 °C although it felt a lot cooler in the 20 mph fresh south-westerly breeze, especially up on the seawall! It was about an hour before high-tide and most of the waders were feeding on the Kent side of the river. Among the mixed group, the majority were Dunlin and Redshank, with fewer Curlew and Black-tailed Godwits. There were also four Ringed Plover feeding in one of the small narrow channels along the mudflats and also a single Spotted Redshank and Grey Plover, A Great Crested Grebe flying up river was a nice find. In the scrub along the seawall were 30-40 Fieldfares and the odd Redwing.

Out on the reserve at least two Marsh Harriers quartered the reserve and Kestrel were seen hovering on a few occasions. A female Sparrowhawk flew low along the fence line and perched briefly on a post. On the many pools and scrapes the wildfowl, especially the drakes were looking resplendent, if only the sun would come out! At least five Stonchats were seen around the reserve, the pairs always staying close together. It was a good walk with very good company it was enjoyable. I look forward to my next visit!

drake Wigeon from Purfleet hide
drake Teal from Purfleet hide