Archive for July, 2005

28th July 2005, Thursday

Highlights yesterday

Dawn at the Bittern Excavation on the 27th after overnight rain
111 Greenshank, 22 Curlew Sandpiper and 4 Black Tailed Godwit.
Today 3 Arctic Skua chasing Terns offshore and a Marsh Harrier at Harbour Farm.


27th July 2005, Wednesday

Rye Harbour Sightings

Flat Beach
150+ Greenshank
27 Black-tailed Godwit

6 Bar-tailed Godwit
155 Dunlin
9 Curlew

Castle Water
8 Common Sandpiper
3 Green Sandpiper
10 Whimbrel (in flight)
3 Little Ringed Plover

26th July 2005, Tuesday

Dawn at Castle Water

32 Little Egret could be seen at the roost.
125 Greylag and 64 Canada Goose
1 Wood Sandpiper
5 Green Sandpiper
2 Barn Owl


24th July 2005, Sunday

Mystery Tern

Today at Ternery Pool there was a strange tern. We think we know what it is, but just for fun we want you to work it out. It is smaller than a Common Tern. We will put our ID here in a few days…
(It was a first summer Arctic Tern, a plumage I have not seen here before.)
tern2 tern1

23rd July 2005, Saturday

Moths – Hastings Country Park

A warm still evening ensured there were plenty of moths coming to the lights at Warren Cottage we set up for the volunteer rangers bbq and moth evening. Even though we only had the lights on for a few hours we clocked up 40+ species including only the third record of the european corn-borer Ostrinia nubilalis for the country park and the third record of purple thorn for Hastings.

A photogenic glow-worm was also found near one of the moth lights. Glow-worms are out in numbers at the moment within Warren Glen and at the nocturnal noises event last weekend over forty were counted.

Purple ThornPurple ThornGlow-worm
Purple Thorn & Glow-worm at Warren Cottage Garden, Warren Glen

23rd July 2005, Saturday

Rye Harbour Moths

Last night saw a range of interesting species in the Lime Kiln Cottage moth trap. Despite relatively low numbers, almost sixty species were present, with a number of rarities, particularly among the ‘micros’. These included yet more Ethmia bipunctella and the pyralids Cynaeda dentalis, Sitochroa palealis, Evergestis extimalis, Dolicarthria punctalis and Synaphe punctalis. Among the ‘macros’ rarities included Pygmy Footman ,Crescent-striped and Kent Black-arches, while new species for the year included Coronet, Small Waved Umber and Pine Hawk-moth.
Cynaeda dentalisEvergestis extimalis
Sitochroa palealisSynaphe punctalis
Clockwise from top left: Cynaeda dentalis, Evergestis extimalis, Synaphe punctalis, Sitochroa palealis

23rd July 2005, Saturday

Cattle Egret

A small white egret in this area is usually a Little Egret. They frequent wetland habitats, so an egret which arrived at some allotments in St Leonards on July 10th and proceeded to creep about the long grass pouncing on grasshoppers was bound to arouse curiosity. Andrew Grace quickly suggested that it could be a Cattle Egret– a much rarer bird in the UK – but it did not look typically like that species. Close inspection by Ralph Hobbs revealed however that it was indeed a Cattle Egret – about the 10th for Sussex – albeit a very young individual.
It has been coming and going but today returned to the allotments at midday, allowing a few of us excellent views as it stalked about among gro-bags, water-drums, artichokes, ragwort and gardeners, to a sound track of sparrows, Herring Gulls and car alarms.
This allotment is fenced and locked to deter vandals, so we were grateful to Sue de Haviland for the tip-off and access.
This bird arrived during a period of southerly winds, when Glossy Ibis and Large Tortoiseshell appeared in our area. The nearest breeding Cattle Egrets are in the Baie de Somme. It is said to seem bigger now and more active than it did then. As a young bird, it is growing and it may have been exhausted by the crossing.

22nd July 2005, Friday

Pannel Valley

A single Little Gull remains at Carter’s flood but otherwise few waders are present. The first migrant Garden, Willow and Grasshopper Warblers are now trickling through the site.

22nd July 2005, Friday

Castle Water

Today, while pulling up willow seedlings at Castle Water we saw, 6 Little Ringed Plovers, 10+ Common Sandpipers, 4 Green Sandpipers, 5 Avocets, Greenshank, Marsh Harrier, Peregrine and a fantastic Puss Moth caterpillar.
Puss Moth caterpillar by Fred
Sam and Fred

22nd July 2005, Friday

Tufted Duck

A male Tufted Duck (FA53299) was ringed in Cambridgeshire in March 1993 and was at Ternery Pool with its mate in May this year. It regularly sat in front of the Crittall Hide where the ring could be read with a telescope – you can see it on the photo below.
Male Tufted Duck FA53299