Wednesday 23 September 2015

Acadian Flycatcher .... At Dungeness.

Acadian Flycatcher.

News broke yesterday morning of a Empidonax Flycatcher species showing well at Dungeness near the fishing boats .

I wasted no time and was out the door in double quick time , my phone was going mad with calls  but they would have to wait until i was on the move in my car (i have hands so i replied to those calls and i was on my way .

Well if i got stuck behind one lorry on the A251 i must of got stuck behind a 100 !!!! very slow going as is often the case that time in the morning , i got through Ashford then on the main drag towards Brenzett more bloody lorries , so what normally takes me just under an hour to get to Dungeness took approx an hour & a half .

I headed along Dungeness road and as i pulled up i could see birders walking away from the fishing boats and other birders just talking looking around , my heart sunk as they were clearly not looking at the bird.

Olive coloured plumage .

I made my way over to the area where the Flycatcher had been seen to be told it was lost to view 10 mins before i got there (those bloody lorries) and to make matters worse the heavens opened with a torrential downpour (summing up my mood at the time).

As the rain eased off i did a massive search of the area and a group of us formed a line and headed towards the life boat station checking everything that moved , 2 Wheatears were very nice to see but were not the bird we were after , it wasn't looking good , other birders were still checking around the fishing boats whilst others went further inland checking the gardens.

Bold wing bars & long primaries.

We then headed back towards the fishing boats after approx an hour of searching , i then happened to notice a birder running across the shingle towards one of the gardens , then others started doing the same , they had refound the ACADIAN FLYCATCHER by South View cottage . 

I then made my way over there and after a brief few frantic seconds connected with this superb bird , it's not been confirmed as an Acadian Flycatcher yet but most consensus of opinion is it is indeed that species which would make it not only the  first ever record in Kent but for Britain to.

Acadian Flycatcher.

The Flycatcher spent the whole time in the garden and would disappear on occasion only to then fly on to a water butt were it posed nicely , it also appeared on the recycle bins and a bench on occasion.

I was lucky to have some really great views through my scope of this Empidonax Flycatcher and i believe some droppings have been collected to be sent of for DNA analysis  which will hopefully confirm it's true identity.

The crowd was now building very quickly and the rain had started coming down very heavy again , i had fantastic views of this top bird and decided to head home very, very, very happy.
Crowd shot by Owen Leyshon.

Acadian Flycatcher.

Many thanks to Owen Leyshon for the use of his crowd photo and to the owners of South view cottage for allowing us access to view their garden.

Edit :  DNA has confirmed that this is indeed an Acadian Flycatcher and is the first record for Kent & Britain .


  1. Hi Rob, your welcome, Southview garden has been amazing, had a Short Toed Treecreeper recently!! (10.09). Also Dark Eyed Junco 08 and Crested Lark 09 and 20 species of Warbler including Raades, Dusky and Pallass's and RB Flycatcher plus the commoner migrants too. It was originally a wildlife garden but attracts migrant birds like a magnet but didn't expect a first for Britain on my window ledge !!. There will be more I'm sure.
    Cheers Dave Bunney, Southview, Dungeness.

    1. Hi Dave , wow what a fantastic selection of birds , must be the best garden bird list in the UK , many thanks again for allowing viewing Dave , hopefully i will be visiting your garden again soon :)

  2. That's only part of my bird list. Anytime your down here you are welcome to call in, I'm usually here.
    Regards DB

    1. Many thanks Dave , will definitely call in sometime


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