Sunday, 15 January 2017

The Last Week of December Including the Milton Long-tailed Ducks

28th Dec.

A heavy frost this morning at Seasalter with a mist hanging over the marsh again,  high tide being about midday.  A walk along the beach revealed c.400 golden plovers, c.1000 knot plus the usual dunlin, turnstones, grey plovers, redshank and counts of 32 ringed plovers by the YC, and c.150 lapwings.  As the tide came in 62 wigeon on the sea plus 8 teal and a surprise seeing 6 gadwall among them. Further out were 5 red-throated divers and 20 grt crested grebes. On the LNR it was rather quiet with only 3 blackbirds, 25 crows, 1 moorhen, 1 song thrush, 2 skylarks and 2 snipe, all close the the Sportsman.

Moved onto Bossenden Wood for a bit of camera action but that was quiet with only a couple of nuthatches, 1 coal tit plus blue and great tits and a chaffinch.

29th Dec.

I thought I would try and see the long-tailed ducks at Milton Creek this frosty morning.  Had a spot of bother finding the right place to park etc but soon on my way down the side of the bridge and out along the creek towards the sea.  It was the first time I had been there and a great selection of birds to be seen, teal, wigeon, avocets, black-tailed godwits, 1 spotted redshank, 3 greenshanks, redshank, marsh harrier, fieldfares, stonechat, little grebes etc.. It wasn't long before I saw the long tails coming up river with the tide, clearly visit on a incoming tide.  I got a few shots but they were always on the other side of the creek so pictures needed a fair crop. Met Keith Privett and Dick who were further out near the shore earlier finding an eider.  

Spotted  Redshank and Black-tailed Godwit

31st Dec.

Back to Seasalter again, the weather changed from frost and sun to a dull but a mild 7 deg. The tide was out, birds much the same as usual but the knot flock had increased to about 3-4000, it was more of a day to see how many species I could see which only amounted to 40. I did note 5 stonechats, 1 egret, c.500 wigeon, 20 teal were perhaps the only highlights.

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