Serin,Isla's middle name...

Serin,Isla's middle name...

Thursday, 6 January 2011

Probably a Skylark then!!!

Woke up this morning to find a rain soaked Upminster although by 9.30 it seemed as if the rain was letting up somewhat so i decided to have it on my toes to RSPB Reserve at Rainham Marsh.
I arrived around tennish but the rain had got heavier again and after much deliberation i decided to go for it on to the Reserve.I started out with the intention of just getting to the Ken Barret hide and taking it from there,on leaving the visitor centre i noticed all the wigeon had got up,a quick scan above and i was onto a Peregrine(although i will probably be accused of actually seeing a kestrel,that comment will become clearer later on).Once in the hide after about 20 minutes walk i set up with 3 other blokes who apart from the Wigeon,teal,shoveler & lapwing visible had seen nothing,a few Snipe & redshank later i decided to head to the New hide on the other side of the reserve.I wasn't really dressed for the occassion as i had a jumper and a bodywarmer on and no waterproofs,but i was already soaked and thought bugger it.
As we headed around the Northern Boardwalk a quick scan of the pool revelead 2 Pintail,lovely ducks.Walking further up the Boardwalk we had 2 Bearded tit actually bounce across the boardwalk before picking up another one on the Reed Mace.
We entered the hide and straight away was on 30 Golden Plover as well as redshank and small amounts of Dunlin,which grew as the tide came in on the Thames.Then i was alerted to some smaller birds feeding about 150 yards from the hide,straight away i knew they were Lapland Buntings,11 is a big number for this area so i guess i shouldn't be too dissapointed by someones comment who arrived once they had dissapeared that they were probably "damp Skylarks" but seeing as i have seen probably hundreds of thousands of Skylarks over the years as dumb as i can sometimes be they were not Skylarks.Every other person who saw them had the same ID,one bloke put the record in the visitor centre book and coincidentally his name was K Burgess (not a relative,i don't believe).Seems that unless one of the London/Essex hierachy actually see the birds then they simply don't exist lol,am happy i saw them and happier the bloke who made the comment didn't.As another local birder i know said to me in a phone call a minute ago "I Don't know why you bother,i don't anymore"
Anyway enough of the Lapland bunting/skylark/wet House Sparrow debacle,after seeing the buntings we were alerted to a Marsh Harrier which was a site tick for me.Then a group of Black Tailed Godwits arrived over Aveley Pools which was a nice year tick for me.I stuck it out in the hide for another hour or so,in which time the birder(s) who made the comment came and went after a while scanning the area but they had gone.I decided around 2.30pm to make my way back to the Visitor Centre where my old mate Rumbo was waiting for me as we were popping out for a drink to see him off as he goes back to Ibiza where he lives tomorrow.
So an eventful day and some nice birds although obviously not accepted by everyone but thats just life i am afraid,some you win and some you lose.I put the call out and some saw it and others didn't.

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