Sunday 8th January 2012
Westerly breeze F3-4 easing off, dry, overcast and mild.
With the day to myself today, late morning I headed over to Stodmarsh for a wander with the camera hoping for a few photo opportunities. The day was very dull, and the stiff breeze meant most birds were keeping a bit quiet, but I had a really enjoyable walk round to the water meadows, where one Glossy Ibis was busy feeding at the back of the pool. I was just in time because after only a couple of minutes trying for a few distant snaps, the ibis took off and flew to the pools out of sight.
On route to the ibis I had a rather nice encouter with a flock of 7 Bullfinches. I can't remember the last time I saw so many Bullfinches together. I also counted 12 Cett's Warblers calling or singing on the walk round. Out on the main lake there were over 150 Shoveler, and 50+ Pochard. Without a scope it was impossible to be accurate as many duck were tucked in the reeds. I only saw a single Marsh Harrier all trip. With little to photograph, I have below the first entry of a Coot in this diary.
Late afternoon I headed to the eastern end of Reculver, where I met up with Chris and Ann Hindle and Marc Heath. We enjoyed lovely views of a Short-eared Owl and a Barn Owl, plus a Peregrine flew through at great speed. At dusk we all saw at least one Long-eared Owl out hunting. On the fields were about 400 Brent geese, which all took off in the fading light, heading out to sea perhaps?