Guianan Cock-of-the-Rock - Guyana 2017

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Monday, 30 September 2013

Booted Warbler - Patch Tick 30/9/13

This superbly well marked Booted Warbler was found by Kris Gillam in Hope Gap this morning when I was on my way to Dungeness with Dick Gilmore and his grandson James. After a couple of hours at Dunge, my twitching feet were getting too much and we soon arrived at Seaford Head in record time.

After about 45 minutes, the bird finally showed and the tense wait was over. Obviously the 1st record for Seaford Head, it was a species I have really been wanting to find on the patch. Never mind, hopefully something else will give itself up to me.

At Dunge, birds noted were Pectoral Sandpiper, Little Stints, Curlew Sandpiper and a Marsh Harrier.

 Booted Warbler at Seaford Head - all features can be seen in this image. The dark tip to the lower mandible, strong supercilium extending beyond the eye, capped appearance, dark-centred tertials, rufous secondaries, dark tail centres, white outer-tail feathers and its behaviour was very phylloscopus like.

Booted Warbler in Hope Gap

Friday, 27 September 2013

Seaford Head + Cuckmere Haven 27/9/13

A few degrees cooler this morning and a slight strength in the easterly wind was probably the reason for few birds in the bushes. However this was compensated by the overhead passage of several species. I walked the Cuckmere straight after but there wasn't much about. No sign of the Wryneck. Will probably give the weekend a miss, the wind is picking up even more!

Totals are:

Hobby - 1
Grey Wagtail - 1
'alba' Wagtail - 45
Yellow Wagtail - 20
Meadow Pipit - 520
Skylark - 5
Reed Bunting - 1
Siskin - 9
Wheatear - 2
Whinchat - 4
Whitethroat - 2
Blackcap - 28
Chiffchaff - 24
House Martin - 800
Swallow - 280

 Yellow Wagtail on the cliff edge
Grey Plover in the Cuckmere

Thursday, 26 September 2013

Seaford Head + Cuckmere Haven 26/9/13

With goodies turning up on the east coast and with a strengthening easterly wind this morning, my expectations as usual ran higher then where they should have been. Never mind, it won't be too long before a Yellow-browed reaches the patch.

An evening walk down the Cuckmere produced another Wryneck and the usual suspects, but pretty quiet in the area.

Wryneck - 1 in Cuckmere this evening
Tree Pipit - 1
Grey Wagtail - 2
Meadow Pipit - 250
Yellow Wagtail - 10
Hobby - 1
'alba' Wagtail - 17
Wheatear - 3
Whitethroat - 7
Blackcap - 26
Chiffchaff - 39
Brent Goose - 1 offshore

Chiffchaff in Hope Gap
 Wryneck in Cuckmere - my usual standard of Wryneck photography
Raven in Cuckmere

Wednesday, 25 September 2013

Seaford Head + Cuckmere Haven 25/9/13

Extremely foggy on the head at first light this morning meant I stayed in the car for the first hour. Once I ventured out, the same selection as yesterday really, however the highlight was a Tawny Pipit seen at the mouth of the Cuckmere River. In the evening another walk down the east Cuckmere produced the usual suspects.
Totals are:

Tawny Pipit - 1 - flew up from the 'sandy' beach after a brief glimpse, landed near the saline lagoon and seen again in flight when appeared to drop down into the sheep fields, but could not re-locate it. Calling constantly!!
Tree Pipit - 1
Meadow Pipit - 400
Snipe - 2
Yellow Wagtail - 20
Siskin - 1
Whitethroat - 6
Lesser Whitethroat - 2
Blackcap - 71
Chiffchaff - 35
Willow Warbler - 1
Sedge Warbler - 1

Cuckmere Haven:
Bar-tailed Godwit - 8
Grey Plover - 2
Whinchat - 3
Wheatear - 3
Green Sandpiper - 1
Greenshank - 2
Knot - 1

Tawny Pipit - Le Crau, South France, not the Cuckmere

Tuesday, 24 September 2013

Seaford Head + Cuckmere Haven 24/9/13

All was quiet when the fog was present, but after an hour it soon disappeared to produce a superb morning of overhead migration. The fields held good numbers of Pipits and the wood held good numbers of Warblers as well. A Tawny Owl was heard calling which is my first up here in two years.

A superb evening was then spent in the Cuckmere where the sky was full of thousands of Swallows, a true spectacle. There was also a huge gathering of small Gulls feasting on the recent insect hatch.

Totals for the morning are:

Tawny Owl - 1 heard
Snipe - 1
Siskin - 1 - first of the autumn
Wheatear - 2
Whinchat - 2
Grey Wagtail - 2
Yellow Wagtail - 5
Meadow Pipit - 500+
Spotted Flycatcher- 1
Whitethroat - 12
Lesser Whitethroat - 2
Blackcap - 21
Chiffchaff - 50
Willow Warbler - 5
Reed Warbler - 1
Swallow - 500+
House Martin - 500+
Sand Martin - 20

Cuckmere Haven:
Hobby - 1
Swallow - 5000+
Yellow Wagtail - 50
Mediterranean Gull - 1 adult winter
Common Gull - 1
Bar-tailed Godwit - 3
Greenshank - 3
Pintail - 8 sat on the sea

 Chiffchaff in Harry's Bush
Willow Warbler in Harry's Bush

ad. winter Mediterranean Gull in the Cuckmere

Thursday, 19 September 2013

Seaford Head 19/9/13

A very calm start before the wind really picked up around mid morning. Much better today with good numbers of migrants about. Meadow Pipits were moving in force today and there had been a small drop of Chiffchaffs. Totals are:

Hobby - 1
Meadow Pipit - 915 west
Mistle Thrush - 2 over
Grey Wagtail - 5
Yellow Wagtail -20
Tree Pipit - 1
Robin - 34
Wheatear - 2
Whinchat - 1
Redstart - 1 male
Whitethroat - 9
Blackcap - 71
Chiffchaff - 41
Reed Warbler - 1
Bar-tailed Godwit - 4

 male Redstart
 Raven
Chiffchaff


Wednesday, 18 September 2013

Seaford Head & Cuckmere Haven 18/9/13

The first calm day in a while produced not very much. Pretty much the same scenario as Beachy, very little diurnal migration, and not much in the bushes. The fields near the wood held a large number of Meadow Pipits.

An evening walk down the Cuckmere produced the usual Waders and 3 Whinchats.

Totals for S'ford Head are:

Spotted Flycatcher - 2
Wheatear - 4
Yellow Wagtail - 45
Grey Wagtail - 2
Meadow Pipit - 117
Whitethroat - 9
Blackcap - 57
Chiffchaff - 12
House Martin - 50

Redshank in the Cuckmere

Tuesday, 17 September 2013

Saturday, 14 September 2013

Cuckmere Haven 14/9/13

This afternoon along the river the usual Waders were present, but with the addition of a superb Little Stint that showed superbly. This was a patch tick for me so I'm well pleased. 2 Whinchats still by the scrape.



Little Stint in the Cuckmere

Friday, 13 September 2013

Seaford Head 13/9/13

Same as usual, these NW winds really not producing anything here, or elsewhere either. Strangely there was an increase in Willow Warblers this morning, with the usual suspects still around. Next few days the weather looks grotty, though I can imagine a yank mega or two turning up pretty soon in the SW. Anyway totals for this morning:

Wheatear - 2
Yellow Wagtail - 19
Redstart - 2
Whitethroat - 18
Lesser Whitethroat - 3
Blackcap - 45
Willow Warbler - 8
Chiffchaff - 16
Reed Warbler - 3
Sedge Warbler - 1

 Wheatear in sheep field
 Chiffchaff in Hope Gap
Willow Warbler in Hope Gap

Thursday, 12 September 2013

Seaford Head & Cuckmere Haven 12/9/13

At last some good conditions for a whole coverage of the Head. Its nice to see some ploughed fields here to giving some hope of a large Pipit. Today quite a few birds were moving overhead, but as ever Hope Gap held most of the grounded migrants. An evening walk down the Cuckmere produced a Turnstone along the river, plus the very showy Knot still kicking about. Totals are:

Scandinavian Herring Gull - 1 adult in moult along cliff edge
Tree Pipit - 2
Meadow Pipit - 97
Grey Wagtail - 4
White Wagtail - 1
Yellow Wagtail - 22
Wheatear - 7
Whinchat - 2
Redstart - 1
Whitethroat - 31
Lesser Whitethroat - 5
Blackcap - 93
Willow Warbler - 2
Chiffchaff - 21
Reed Warbler - 1
Swift - 2
House Martin - 100
Sand Martin - 5

Cuckmere Haven
Turnstone - 1 (only my 2nd ever in the Cuckmere)
Knot - 1
Whinchat - 3
Sedge Warbler - 1
Reed Warbler - 1


 Scandinavian Herring Gull - primary tips have taken a
battering
Swift - a pale juvenile bird.......not a Pallid!!

 Knot
Turnstone

Tuesday, 10 September 2013

Seaford Head + Cuckmere Haven 10/9/13

Had a lay in this morning before venturing up onto the Head. Much more activity but I would have seen more if I had got up earlier. Today felt more like I was going to find a Yellow-browed Warbler instead of a Hippolais Warbler. In the evening a walk down the Cuckmere produced yet more new Waders.

S'ford Head:
Wheatear - 9
Whinchat - 2
Redstart - 3
Yellow Wagtail - 5
Meadow Pipit - 20
Whitethroat - 15
Lesser Whitethroat - 2
Sedge Warbler - 1
Chiffchaff - 10
Willow Warbler - 1
Blackcap - 20
House Martin - 100
Sand Martin - 50
Brown Rat - 1 - a patch tick!!!

Cuckmere:
Knot - 1
Bar-tailed Godwit - 1
Greenshank - 3


Knot along the Cuckmere



Monday, 9 September 2013

Seaford Head & Cuckmere Haven 9/9/13

Well what a poor day. Thank goodness it wasn't just me as it appears all sites along the south coast have suffered. Hardly any migrants anywhere and even a seawatch produced very little. I have seeded a couple of areas on the Head so hopefully this will attract an Accentor or two.

A seawatch produced 3 Arctic Skuas and worringly 9 Wigeon flying west, and the Cuckmere produced the usual Waders plus a Black-tailed Godwit and a Grey Plover on the scrape, plus 4 Whinchats.

With the winds sticking NW all week, its going to be hard work out there.

 Ringed Plover in the Cuckmere
Dunlin in the Cuckmere

Friday, 6 September 2013

Seaford Head 6/9/13

Rain commenced at around 10am so just enough time to cover all the sites. Again very busy in Hope Gap with strong movements of Blackcaps just before I arrived, but still lots of activity. Highlight was a murder scene on the east side of the Cuckmere. Weekend looking poor so last morning for a few days I think. Totals are:

Spotted Flycatcher - 2
Redstart - 3
Tree Pipit - 2
Wheatear - 1
Whinchat - 2
Yellow Wagtail - 10
Whitethroat - 36
Lesser Whitethroat - 9
Blackcap - 85
Garden Warbler - 2
Reed Warbler - 2
Chiffchaff - 7
Willow Warbler - 3

 Whinchat on Golf Course
 Murder in the Cuckmere
distant record shot of Derek

Thursday, 5 September 2013

Seaford Head & Cuckmere Haven 5/9/13

A very warm morning started off with a thin layer of mist on the Head, which soon dissipated when the temperatures rose. A good variety of common migrants today with totals of:

Pied Flycatcher - 1 1st winter
Spotted Flycatcher - 2
Redstart - 3
Nightingale - 1 showed well by cottages but too quick for the camera.
Yellow Wagtail - 20
Wheatear - 7
Whinchat - 6
Tree Pipit - 2
Whitethroat - 57
Lesser Whitethroat - 12
Blackcap - 55
Garden Warbler - 1
Reed Warbler - 3
Sedge Warbler - 1
Willow Warbler - 4
Chiffchaff - 3
Swallow - 100
House Martin - 40

An evening visit down the Cuckmere produced:

Wryneck - 1 still present by the scrape
Corn Bunting - 1 (scarce on the patch)
Whinchat - 7
White Wagtail - 1
Yellow Wagtail - 50
Wheatear - 2
Teal - 3

 Early morning on the Head.....and a Wheatear.
Sedge Warbler


Wryneck in the Cuckmere

Tuesday, 3 September 2013

Seaford Head & Cuckmere Haven 3/9/13

I visited both Seaford and Beachy Head this morning and both were as quiet as one another. The clear night really cleared out most migrants. I won't even bother listing the small species list as it has no relevance really.
Fortunately this evening really produced some nice stuff down the Cuckmere in severe sea mist. Totals for this evening are:

Wryneck - 1 found on southern edge of the scrape
Curlew Sandpiper - 3 juvs still showing superbly
Common Sandpiper - 3
Greenshank - 2
Wheatear - 3
Reed Warbler - 1
Willow Warbler - 1
Chiffchaff - 1



 Curlew Sandpipers along Cuckmere River
Wryneck by the scrape - I blame the mist for this horrid pic!

Monday, 2 September 2013

Seaford Head & Rottingdean 2/9/13

An uneventful morning today producing lots of the commoner migrants, but very little in the way of scarcities. The continued westerly winds over the past few days have ended the invasion of Pied Flys etc.
However an afternoon visit to Rottingdean produced the juv. Red-backed Shrike which was found on Saturday by Andy Whitcomb.

Totals for S'ford Head:

Spotted Flycatcher - 1
Redstart - 3
Tree Pipit - 1
Yellow Wagtail - 11
Wheatear - 3
Whitethroat - 76
Lesser Whitethroat - 5
Blackcap - 83
Garden Warbler - 9
Willow Warbler - 13
Chiffchaff  - 3
Reed Warbler - 1
Swallow - 50

 Red-backed Shrike at Rottingdean
Spotted Flycatcher at Seaford Head