Friday 24 February 2023

Local Birding Highlights for February

                                       February Birding Highlights  2023

                                                  DENGE  WOODS


Marsh Tit sunning itself.

      Marsh Tit was the obvious highlight here , we also heard and saw several Firecrest , Siskin & 2 Lesser Redpoll flew over. The Marsh Tits were quite vocal including one bird which was in full song sunning itself out in the open.


In full song.

Marsh Tit.


1 of 2  Little Owls at Godmershem.

A couple of visits to Godmersham in February produced superb views of 2 Little Owls plus a huge flock of Chaffinch which had at least 6 Brambling (including 3♂).

However the main attraction at Godmersham was Hawfinch and we were lucky enough to see at least 3 birds, always high up in the trees but cracking views through the scope were obtained.

Digi scoped .


Several visits to Bossenden Woods produced 2 Lesser Spotted Woodpeckers , i heard only and another seen well.

Good numbers of Treecreepers (5+) plus Nuthatch, Coal Tit & Firecrest were all seen well.

Lesser Spotted Woodpecker.


Snow Bunting

Having a preen

Wing & Tail stretching.

Snow Bunting.

I had cracking views of the Snow Buntings at Reculver on several dates varying in number from 5 to 8 birds in total. Other highlights at this site included Short eared Owl, Velvet & Common Scoter, Black Redstart & Bewick's Swan.

Black Redstart.


Oare Marshes is my local patch and we have seen some cracking birds already this year, Water & Rock Pipit , Greenshank, Barn Owl, Merlin , Great white Egret (2), Spoonbill , Dartford Warbler  Bittern & Hen Harrier to name but a few !!!

Male Hen Harrier .



A couple of visits to Stodmarsh produced distant but good scope views of the female Ring necked Duck which was like many a new species for me in the Valley 

Digi scoped record shot of the Ring Necked Duck.

A local twitch to Elmstone near Preston village produced some cracking views of the recently found Hume's Leaf Warbler !!

Sadly i never managed a photo as it was far to quick for me but did enjoy some great views and also heard it call frequently. Congrats to the finder Xavier Taylor !!!


Tuesday 7 February 2023

Day Trip to Norfolk

                                                     30th January 2023 



Richardson's Cackling Goose.

On Monday the 30th January i left home at 4am and headed to Brancaster in Norfolk in the hope of seeing the Richardson's Cackling Goose !!

I parked up the concrete pad just before Brancaster at approx 07.30 , i was the only person there and could hear the distant Pink footed Geese in the distant fields.

A quick scan through part of the flock which was closest only produced PFG however these were a new bird for my year list (we don't get many in Kent).

Another birder arrived  about 30 minutes later and we teamed up to check through the furthest flock near the wooded area in the top field , other birders came & went without success however myself & Trevor (sorry don't know your last name) continued scanning the 1500+ flock of PFG , finally after 2 hours scanning Trevor said those words we all like to hear ''I'VE GOT IT ''

Richardson's Cackling Goose.

I quickly managed to get onto it before it got lost in the huge flock , roughly the size of a Mallard the RCG could easily be lost behind a PFG , so after a 2 hour search i was rewarded with some distant but good scope views of this smart Cackling Goose.  


Long Eared Owl

Whilst enjoying views of the RCG news had come through that the Long Eared Owl at CLEY SPY was showing well, my mind was made up to head there via Holkham fresh marsh, a quick stop at Holkham fresh marsh produced several White Fronted Geese & more Pink footed Geese.

I then carried on my journey to CLEY SPY and eventually saw the Long Eared Owl in all it's splendid glory, what a bird !!!!!

I would also like to thank the good people of CLEY SPY for allowing viewing of this wonderful bird. 

Digi scoped Long Eared Owl.

Such a treat to see this wonderful bird, i also bumped into Mike & Toby here , really great to meet you !! , we then teamed up and headed to Weybourne to look for more Geese, this time Tundra Bean Goose was the target.

2 Tundra Bean Geese.

It didn't take long to locate the Tundra Bean Geese among the 1500+ Pink Footed Geese , once again a remarkable sight & sound, one i will never forget.

Pink Footed Geese

Huge flock of Pink Footed Geese.

6th february 2023 : Norfolk Again !!!

I teamed up with Richard .R. to try and see the RCG as he couldn't come up with me the week before, sadly we never managed to relocate it at Burnham Deepdale or Brancaster, we did see lot's of Pink Footed Geese & 2 Tundra Bean Geese at Burnham Deepdale though.

Long Billed Dowitcher.

We spent a good few hours searching for the RCG without success and finally decided to head to Cley for the Long Billed Dowitcher .

Long Billed Dowitcher.