Archive for January, 2010

31st January 2010, Sunday

Hastings Country Park NR

At least 5 Corn Buntings flew from a bush at the edge of the quarry – at the end of the muddy track leading from the car park – this afternoon.
A Peregrine flew over.

30th January 2010, Saturday

Pett Level

Ringtail Hen Harrier today. Hundreds of G C Grebes on the sea + f Eider. 1 Knot strayed down from RHNR!
Read more on RXbirdwalks

30th January 2010, Saturday

Rye Harbour

Highlights this morning have included 600 Wigeon in flight over the Beach Reserve heading out to sea, 3 Scaup, 5 Goldeneye and a Common Sandpiper on Harbour Farm Pools, 8 Grey Partridge and a Merlin at Ternery Pool. Waders feeding along the shore and then roosting at high water along Shore Ridges included Sanderling, Grey Plover, Dunlin, Oystercatcher and knot. At Castle Water a Bittern gave flight views from the northern shore were 14 Ruff could also been seen in the nearest fields. 8 Smew (2 drake) and 15 Pintail showed well from the southern shore, from the viewpoint 2 Marsh Harrier, Kingfisher and Cettis Warbler.

Sanderling on Shore Ridges

29th January 2010, Friday

Winter fungus

This website rarely features fungi, so here is a particularly beautiful cluster of what I believe is Velvet Shank (Flammulina velutipes). These have been growing on the upturned stump of one of the long-dead elms between Rye’s Cricket Salts and the river, felled by last autumn’s gales. I sawed up this stump on 12th December and brought it back to my garage to store for firewood, and was surprised to discover these fungi growing on it in dark “lab conditions” last week, the blushing apricot of the smooth caps contrasting vividly with the rich brown of the velvety stems. Unfortunately, their beauty is very transient and the fungi are already dying with the remains of the elm from which they grew. (Click on photo to see it better)

28th January 2010, Thursday


I have just revisited this booklet and, despite its title, has many interesting articles – The Depositional and Landscape Histories of Dungeness Foreland and the Port of Rye
Click here to download.

28th January 2010, Thursday

Rye Harbour

Highlights over the past few days have included at least 500 Oystercatcher and 450 Curlew roosting along Shore Ridges at dawn, the low water shore attracted 23 Brent Geese, 34 Pintail and 116 Knot, at the Wader Pool 5 Jack snipe and 29 Snipe were flushed while collecting rubbish from the margins, and at Castle Water two Bitterns have again given fantastic views infront of the Hide.

Read the rest of this entry »

28th January 2010, Thursday

Turtle Dove

No, not yet, it’s too early. But this declining species needs your help – the Maltese government is still considering opening what it calls a “limited spring hunting season” in 2010. PLEASE read this petition by clicking here.

27th January 2010, Wednesday

Rye Harbour Sightings

Highlights from Castle Water hide mid-afternoon were a Bittern, seven Smew (including two drake), 22 Pintail and two Marsh Harrier. On Castle Farm seven Ruff and a Green Sandpiper were present, while a male Goldeneye was present on Long with (with a female/immature on the new pits behind Ternery Pool).

Bittern from Castle Water Hide this afternoon

26th January 2010, Tuesday

Radio Dungeness

I caught a snatch of a Radio 4 programme today called. Shingle Street – Dungeness is a place to listen and to watch. It is a place to watch new land being made by the sea’s shovelling of shingle; a place to watch the manufacture of power, a place to watch the migrating birds and moths find a transitory refuge. But watching is about far more than just looking, as writer and naturalist Paul Evans reveals in this powerful and haunting sound portrait of one of Britain’s most unsettling landscapes, the shingle flats of Dungeness. Listen again by clicking here or it’s broadcast again Wed 27 Jan 2010 21:00 BBC Radio 4.

26th January 2010, Tuesday

Castle Water

Highlights from Castle Water this morning included 2 Bittern, 8 smew (2 drake), 16 Pintail, 5 Scaup and 300 Wigeon, good numbers of Shoveler, Teal and Gadwall were also present. From the viewpoint Kingfisher and Marsh Harrier. A Buzzard passed overhead at the northern end of the main pit.

Two drake Pintail having a nap out from the hide.