It's been a while since we - the Last of the Summer Wine trio - went a-birding, but as things are starting to fly again, off we went, setting off at 6am and getting to Dunge nice and early.
Although we carried enough equipment between us to provide our boys in Afghanistan with adequate supplies, the above was the only successful bird photo taken, and that was taken by Compo. A nice sum-plum turnstone.
That's not to say that we didn't have a good time, and at the ARC pit were tree sparrows, wood sandpiper, green and common sandpipers, greenshank and large numbers of unidentified eclipse ducks. A family of sedge warblers in the willow trail gave good views as they fed on the large number of bugs, and at the observatory the bushes and moat held plenty of willow warblers, chiffchaffs and wheatears, with a common redstart. The binoculars were busier than the cameras, and pleasant it was too.
I got a lifer, though, in the shape of 'common' dodder, which in Kent is only really common at Dungeness. As it's flowering now, it becomes more visible than when it is just a few strands around its host....in this case, broom bushes.
At Pett Levels (there's a wasted trip) a flock/swamp of ladybirds caught the eye, including harlequins....
...and what appeared to be a no-spot ladybird. Something tells me this is not a ladybird, but another kind of beetle.
Over the weekend I had the good fortune to visit three excellent pubs - the King's Head in Kingsdown, the Ship in Deal
and the Red Lion at Snargate, in the depths of Romney Marsh.
All three pubs are 'locals' but benefit from passing trade, and the phrase 'where everyone knows your name' applies to each. At the Red Lion, the front room was like a family parlour, while the other bar(with serving hatch) is a homage to the 1940s and the Women's Land Army. Old George in the picture has obviously occupied that seat for decades, waiting for customers to buy him drinks.
The Red Lion is run by Doris who joined the Women's Land Army in the 1940s, moved from London to Romney and never returned. She married the then landlord, and is now passing the pub on to her daughter.