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Saturday, 1 August 2020

Cooling Marshes

July 28th

First visit for a good few months, March if I recall correctly, great to be back over here, although windy it was nice and bright and as ever the wildness of the North Kent Marshes was a breath of fresh air.

Driving out on the track produced a couple of Common Buzzards, Sand Martins moving west in good numbers with the odd Swift mixed in and several Swallows.

The undoubted highlight on the way out there was a big juvenile female peregrine mobbing 2 Foxes with low passes, at the time it was lowish light but true to form and attitude she gave both a very hard time. Photos are not great, couldn’t get a lock on her.

First Fox

2nd Fox

Bring quite warm I was also hoping to catch up with Southern Migrant Hawkers, having been seen recently at Cliffe I was hopeful. 

Luckily enough the visit also coincided with high tide, good numbers of waders were present which included the following.

Avocet – a minimum of 350
Black Tailed Godwit – 800
Curlew – 120
Grey Plover -3
Greenshank – 2
Whimbrel – 7
Oystercatcher – 54

Other than these - Ringed Plover, Common Sandpiper, Turnstone and Green Sandpiper were also seen which made it a good wader morning.

On the raptor front 3 Marsh Harriers, same amount of Kestrels but surprisingly no Hobbies, likely August is better for them.

What I thought was a Wood Lark was also seen, flight singing as well but on photo review later turned out to be a Skylark. At the time I thought definite but shows you can be wrong quite easily, bit of a howler and a reminder to not take things for granted and look at all the features.

Dragons were present but didn’t connect with Southern’s but plenty of Migrant Hawkers, Ruddy Darters were everywhere, most though were sheltering from the wind. 

A few Wall Browns were also showing, always good to catch up with these. 

Great to be back, hopefully another visit in August. 

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