Thursday, 12 November 2009

First Caspian of the season

I had a meeting with the RSPB at Rainham Marshes today, and afterwards checked Aveley Pools in case there was anything interesting among the gulls (as the rest of the reserve and adjacent Wennington Marshes are virtually dry, Aveley Pools seems to be concentrating the gulls at present). Careful scanning eventually paid off with a smart first-winter Caspian Gull, which subsequently flew off in the direction of the tip. As I was there primarily for the meeting I didn't take my 500 mm telephoto, but got some record shots with a smaller lens - see www.flickr.com/photos/dominicmitchell/. Also present today in the short time I had available were:
* Pintail: male and female on Aveley Pools.
* Jack Snipe: one from the viewing mound.
* Curlew: one on the foreshore.
* Yellow-legged Gull: a first-winter over the reserve and 12 ads along the Kent foreshore on the falling tide (among many hundreds of large gulls, including good numbers of both graellsii and intermedius Lesser Black-backs).
* Great Spotted Woodpecker: one in the scrub.
* Redwing: one heard over the scrub.
* Cetti's Warbler: one singing briefly in the reedbed by Aveley Pools.
* Chiffchaff: one in the scrub.

Rgds

Dominic Mitchell

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