Sunday, 10 November 2019

Bishopstone, Cuckmere and Mill Hill (03-10 November)

Sunday 10 November. DB and I went to Bishopstone looking for the released (by Wiltshire reintroduction programme) Great Bustard. A smart bird feeding in a large kale field where most of the time its red leg flag remained hidden. At times it crouched down reminding me of the only other one I've seen in Britain, in Kent in March 1978 (thankfully pre release scheme). A Buzzard and 1-2 Sparrowhawks were also seen. We went on to Seaford Head and the still very flooded Cuckmere. Very busy on a sunny Sunday but we did manage to see Barnacle Goose, a red-head Goosander (on the sea before flying east), adult Yellow-legged Gull, 8 Long-tailed Tits, Goldcrest and 6+ Rock Pipits (some or all probably Scandinavians). 
released Great Bustard near Bishopstone

showing its red flag as it stretched a wing
an impressive bird to see irrespective of its origin

that flash of red again
adult Yellow-legged Gull in the Cuckmere
standing up
fully awake but in poor light
one of the iconic views of the Sussex coast - Cuckmere Haven to Belle Tout
Saturday 09 November. Megan and I took Cookie up to Mill Hill seeing 4 Long-tailed Tits, a nice Firecrest, 8 Linnets and 3 Goldfinches.

Friday 08 November. I took Cookie up to Mill Hill. Several low flocks of Wood Pigeon flew NE totalling about 850 while 2 Redwing dropped in and as we left a Sparrowhawk flew over. There were fewer Robins and Song Thrushes than on recent visits.

Thursday 07 November. Megan and I took Cookie to Brooklands but it was quiet with 5 Teal, 3 Little Grebe and single Great Spotted Woodpecker and Chiffchaff seen and a Cetti's Warbler heard. Two Buzzards were sitting by the A27 cutting on our way home and 2 Sparrowhawks flew over our garden. Later, at low tide, I took Cookie to the Adur where we counted 33 Ringed Plover, a Dunlin and 5 Redshank.

Great Spotted Woodpecker at Brooklands
Wednesday 06 November. I took Cookie to Mill Hill where we saw a Buzzard, 55 Wood Pigeons (flying N), a flock of 18 Long-tailed Tits, 14 Blackbirds, 12 Song Thrushes, 14 Robins, a male Stonechat, 3 Greenfinches and 6 Goldfinches. I also heard a Cetti's Warbler.

Sunday 03 November. Megan and I took Cookie to Mill Hill where we saw a late House Martin, a superb Firecrest (aren't they all), 3 Wrens, 3 Song Thrushes, 5 Robins and 4 Goldfinches.

Red Admiral at Mill Hill

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