On Sunday the 7th I decided to join the KOS meeting at the SBBOT but woke to find thick fog. Still determined to go I left early and approaching Herne Bay just remembered I had left all my gear at home! So a quick turn around at H/Bay to pick up my bins etc. and start again. It was still foggy but seemed fairly safe and plenty of visibility at 60 mph, then at The Prospect Inn, 'Road Closed', accident! I know, I'll nip down through Laundry Road, a short cut. Oh no! Road closed for road works, so doubled back to the Prospect Inn again and back through Manston finally arriving 9.03am., 3 minutes late! The group were watching a ringing demonstration which was quite interesting although I don't like seeing birds hanging up on pegs in cloth bags etc..
Afterwards, we walked down the road a bit, Mike Bedwell picking up on 9 grey partridges in the field and further on in the gardens several spotflys, chiffs, willows and blackcaps. In the 'Elms', one or two pied flycatchers were high up in the trees and in the gully a couple of redstarts. Back to the 'Obs' for lunch but not before M.B. saw a Monty's harrier flying out over the golf course. After our break back onto the trapping area to see several whinchats, redstarts, piedflys, whitethroat and blackcaps etc. after which I went home leaving the group to get another view of the harrier from the Restharrow Scrape later that afternoon.
Monday the 8th I stayed local at Seasalter finding all the usual waders inc. 1 sanderling and a total of 58 egrets, one big flock of about 30 flying west together. 3 Sandwich terns were patrolling the coastline plus one common tern which landed on one of the marker posts. The KTNC were ragwort pulling not before I saw a clouded yellow and further on no sign of the wheatears!
A lovely day again on the 9th and a stop along SS Lane revealed a wheatear on one of the hay bales plus a cetti's in the roadside ditch. At the seafront, 43 barwits, 27 g.c.grebes, 2 whimbrels etc and along the LNR, the 3 regular wheatears again. Nothing much else doing so I walked up to Castle Coote to see if the egrets were roosting there and yes they were and another count of 58! On the way back just one swallow and a couple of kestrels and a crow count of 170 in the stubble fields.
Whimbrel opposite the YC
Today, I retraced my steps again but left out the C.Coote walk. Just 2 wheatears were all I could find at the LNR with nothing much on the sea in the brisk NE wind but on the 'island roost', were a group of 6 common sandpipers with the 140 ringed plovers .