Sunday, 18 January 2009

A wander around North Kent

A strangely unsatisfying morning (probably the cold wind, for which I was not adequately prepared) at least gave us an overflying Lesser Spotted Woodpecker and three clumps of Butcher's Broom of which only one had a few berries remaining.
These were in Park Wood near Challock - the pecker had been calling up in the canopy, and was eventually kind enough to show.
Then a short drive across to Oare, even though the tide was out. We had distant views of two Common Buzzards, three Red-Breasted Mergansers, 64 Avocets and a Great Northern Diver, the last-named struggling with a large flatfish while envious gulls circled above.
Dunlin on the Swale mud
The 64 Avocets, and a flock of Brent Geese flying upriver. One lone goose seemed to look different so was tracked along the Swale, but the possibility of a Black Brant was quickly discounted, and eventually we concluded that it was not a PaleBelly either, and that the bright light had made its flanks seem whiter than normal for a DarkBelly.
More exciting are the latest addiotions to the Flicker Photos of the Kingsdown Sherpa....stunning!


Mary said...

I like all these water and mudflat shots...very nicely done! The flight shot is terrific, too! You always seem to see a great variety when you are out and I'm impressed that you count them all.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the kind comments about my pictures and my ability to lug half a hundredweight of kit around all day. I just wish my geese recognition skills were as far developed!
Whatever it was the flight shots of the goose were impressive.

abbey meadows said...

Quality sightings there K...sounds like a very satisfying day to me!

NW Nature Nut said...

Your flicker Barn Owl photos are so great! How come you are so owl lucky?! I love it!

Kingsdowner said...

The barn owl photos are indeed incredible, but not taken by me. They are the product of a protege, who lugs huge amounts of equipment around in order to achieve this kind of result.
We have a larger than usual number of owls around at the moment, possibly due to low breeding success of rodents in continental Europe.