Saturday, 6 April 2013

Rye and Pett

An early morning start, a man on a mission to find the Kentish Plover at Rye Harbour. Martin is getting dangerously close in the year tick tally and I felt obliged to do a "mini twitch". Leaving home the skies were cloudless and augured a good day, unfortunately, as I passed by Polegate, the heavens became the usual solid leaden grey of the past few months.

Never mind, I thought to myself as I set up shop outside Lime Kiln Cottage, hoping to have the bird in the bag and to be able to move on to Dungeness fairly quickly.  Well the bird had disappeared, despite being seen by the warden early in the day. Several hours passed with no result so I took a walk round to the Parkes hide, just the usual suspects about, plenty of Avocets, Dunlin, Ringed Plover and a solitary Bar-tailed Godwit.

As I reached the footpath I decided to give it one last shot  and thanks to Neil, a birder from London who convinced me to move to where the bird had reportedly been sighted, the bird was found. Well, it is an understatement to say the camera was redundant, it was a long way off, a mere speck and difficult to identify even with the scope. I also found myself guilty of ignoring other birds, concentrating only on the plover, as Neil pointed out a group of Ruff just in front of us.

On the way home I called in at Pett Level and scanned the Colonel Body Memorial Lakes, which were almost devoid of birds. By chance I wandered over the shingle and discovered a mini west to east migration. Mainly Brent Geese, Red-throated Divers, Black-throated Divers, Common Scoter and sundry Sandwich Terns.

There seemed to be a definite movement of Black-headed Gulls  flying low and purposefully against the easterly breeze.

Finally, a flyby of a different sort of bird - Spitfire KJ-I

To cap it all, as I reached home in glorious sunshine I went out into the back garden just as a flock of 20+ Med Gulls wheeled high above me, their calls being the absolute clincher on the ID - another garden tick!


  1. Hiya, must have seen you there as we had re-located the Kentish Plover and got other birders onto it...only just warmed up now..shame it did not come closer :-( nice blog by the way

    1. Hi Nick
      yes we did meet and many thanks for getting me on to the bird as it were. Once I had seen it relocation wasn't a problem. Shame it was so distant, just a record shot would have been nice.

      Great to meet you and to be able to put a face to name, though I think we have met before. Thanks for the comment - not a patch on yours but I find blogging makes me get out and about more.



  2. Hi Dave, we got there eventually and the cold did not help! was great to see it and us Worthing birders tracked it down..friends of mine went Sunday and could not find it but noticed it was seen today..seems we missed the birds at close quarters but hey! Blogging certainly encourages me to get out, something i slacked on last yr..keep up the good work and hopefully see you around Dave!

    Best wishes