Serin,Isla's middle name...

Serin,Isla's middle name...

Thursday, 30 January 2014

Canvey Island,Its fecking wet there!!!

To be fair,its not just Canvey,it seems to be everywhere suffering from downpour after downpour,a real concern for not just the birds and other wildlife but for farming,our roads which are constantly flooded,in fact pretty much everywhere has had it,some worse than others.The picture Below is the tiny little stream at Thames Chase Forest Centre in Pike Lane,Upminster and it is usually just a trickle.This picture was actually taken yesterday and the level is even higher now and rising and with very heavy rain forecast for tomorrow this could yet flood,which i think would be a first,at least at this point,further down its about 20 foot wide as its flooded under the M25!!
Although once upon a time it is believed it was actually a river in itself were boats carried good up from the mardyke,which is where it flowed into,into the local mill which was on site but this is over 200 years ago.Now all that travels up and down it are Kingfishers and the small fish that it feeds on.

Anyway,back to Canvey Point,i arrived just after 9 to find the lads (Denis Tuck,Ron Colson & Trevor Oakley) sitting in the car by the Sea wall,hiding from the rain,after getting our waterproofs on we headed for the Sea Wall and around the corner to view the Mud,there was plenty of waders on there,mainly Dunlin,Grey Plover,Sanderling,Ringed plover and large numbers of oystercatchers and Turnstone,a few Curlew were way out but because of the conditions we really couldnt see very far,a couple of Meadow Pipits were seen off the jetty.Canveys east endis well known for its big numbers of waders at high tide especially knot and Dunlin amd they give pretty impressive displays..
Once the Mist lifted,the rain let off a bit we got our scopes out and first up were 5 Red throated Divers and one Black Throated diver sitting on the sea about 500 yards or so out,we watched for a while whle looking at Cormorants,Great crested Grebes and Gulls while hoping for other seabirds but they didnt materialise,they were probably out there but easily missed in those conditions,although we had around 20-30 Red Throated Divers going back and forward either side of the high tide and large numbers of Great Crested Grebes.There were thousands of gulls,way out following the fishing boats leaving Leigh on Sea,no doubt fishing for their famous Cockles,but the distance was far too great for us to make out any species.
We stayed for 3 hours in total with the last hour being the driest,with the sun even threatening to break through,think it did,for about 30 seconds,well nearly.A cracking place and definately one i will be visitng again in the next few days or weeks once the light is better.On the way out i met local birder Terry Jeffries who i have known from Non league footy forum "Fans focus"although we have never met we have exchanged banter on the forums,Nice to meet you mate!!!
From here i made my way back into Upminster and to Thames Chase,Pike Lane.It was raining again,although not too hard so i had a wander,not really expecting to see too much but straight away was onto a group of 12 Lesser Redpoll,a few Gold and Chaffinches and within a couple of minutes a large Long Tailed Tit Flock numbering around 25 with a few Blue Tits,Great Tits and Goldcrest mixed in,the Long Tailed tits seemingly following me around the site for the next half hour or so,although in reality they were probably just doing their usual circuit as thats what Long Tailed Tits do,they scattered though when a Male Sparrowhawk went for the lot of them!!
Went back to the Centre as the next band of Rain came in and for the next hour watched the Sparrowhawk flit between the woods and open lamd hunting until it was dispersed by the local Crows,not a bad day despite the Weather....

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