Friday, 9 September 2011

Dungeness Double Dip


Today provided are rare and precious opportunity to spend time birding at Dungeness, a place I first visited some 52 years ago - sea fishing with my Uncle Graham. In those days the "new" access road had just been finished and work was starting on the "A" station. The cooling water intake was a huge tower offshore which looked as if it were made of Meccano, and had a pair of Carrion Crow nesting on it - no sign of the large number of Cormorants around today. Now all there is to see is this buoy, given a sense of scale by the ILB paying a visit
 

And here's a passing Cormorant


Today's first dip was Barry's glasses lost out by the fishing boats - I couldn't find them for him, but an angler packing up there showed me the dozen or so Channel Whiting he'd caught and planned to eat grilled with cheese on top - dunno if that appeals to me, better give it a try later this autumn I suppose. While we were chatting a super super Arctic Skua was chasing the Sandwich Terns fishing there out of the SW wind, too far off to photograph I'm afraid

I did find the Cattle Egret, though, at a distance and feeding in the grass, a lovely bird and very nice to see. My pics only marginally worse than Phil Smith's, I think(http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-cm4CH0sjwQk/TmZSnrrDA2I/AAAAAAAACKA/57NVWr-7mlI/s1600/DSC_8913.JPG)

 




This juvenile Oik not much better, notice the brown back, not a black back


Someone came rushing into the Hanson Hide at the west end of ARC asking if the Pectoral Sandpiper was there. Well, I'd given everything in view a  good bashing, including the 200 or so Golden Plover, and a second going over after a Hobby had dashed over and re-arranged them all in a panic, and I was sure there were no "peeps" there. I remembered a small group of Dunlin up the other end of the pit, and thought it might be with them, so off I went, to find this Common Sandpiper, so that was the second dip

Oh well, it was a good afternoon, 51 species,  topped off by a super Ice-cream from Chris' wonderful Ice-cream parlour in Dymchurch, called Twice as Nice, by the mini roundabout at the West end of town, Try it, superb!!

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