Saturday, 2 May 2015

Gunners Park Dip! Success at Rainham Marshes RSPB

This morning we were all set for a trip to Rainham when news broke of a Red-rumped Swallow present at Gunners park!
So off we set, Little more than 37 miles from home but the journey was painfully slow, we got within 10-15 minutes of the site when news came through that the bird had flown North West!
The bird had disappeared earlier and had re-appeared so we waited around the lake hoping. Two hours later and no sign. A few familiar faces arrived during this time giving us a chance to catch up, so not a completely wasted journey.

Back to the original plan and a visit to Rainham Marshes. 
Again a painfully slow journey which made the 30 mile trip seem like double that. Finally we parked up in the car park and headed off along the path towards Target Pools.
Plenty of Reed and Sedge Warblers all along the pathways on the way out. Cuckoo calling in the distance. Had a quick look for any Water Voles on the way round but no luck today. We reached the viewing platform overlooking Target Pools and started scanning the area for the Pec Sandpiper.
We were struggling to find the target bird, and nobody else was on it either. After several scans I eventually located the bird and managed to get the others onto it.
Great scope views, but the heat haze and distance was making photo's difficult to say the least. 

Pectoral Sandpiper

A very nice consolation for the earlier dipped Red-Rumped Swallow.
A smart male Garganey was also on show on the Target Pools, and a Peregrine caused panic when it flew straight overhead. 
Another calling Cuckoo on the way back, with plenty of Whitethroats and Linnets. A couple of Blackcap and Garden Warblers were also seen.
As we were driving along the entrance track to leave a Lesser Whitethroat popped into view close to the roadside.

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