Sunday, 21 August 2016

Seawatching at Dungeness and Bonaparte's Gull at Oare Marshes

An early morning sea watching session from the comfort of the hide at Dungeness produced three year ticks in the form of several Arctic Skua's, three Manx and two Balearic Shearwater. Also noted during a two hour session were large numbers of Gannet along with single figure counts of Common, Black and Sandwich Terns plus Common Scoter, Great Crested Grebe and Fulmar.
Moving on to Oare Marshes we found the water levels on the East Flood to be the best they have been for quite a while, and we soon located six Curlew Sandpiper for another year tick. Two Little Stints were also seen plus large numbers of Black-tailed Godwits and Redshanks. Among these large flocks were 20+ Ringed Plover, Dunlin, Golden Plover, Lapwings 4 Knot and single Greenshank, Spotted Redshank, Turnstone, Kingfisher and Water Rail.
As the water levels rose on the creek, the gulls started dropping in on the flood, and eventually the Bonaparte's Gull was found among them. 

Now minus almost all of it's summer plumage Black hood it proved difficult to pick out among the large flocks of Black headed Gulls and difficult light conditions.

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