Holland Haven Birding

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Recent Sightings

Key:Plain Text- Resident/Regular Visitor.Green -Likely to be Annual. Amber -Less than Annual. Red -Rarity. CAPITALS -New bird for site.

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Site Year Tick: *

AUGUST 2012  

1st - And it was on/off rain to start the month!!  Some brighter spells during the day intermingled with the drizzle (and some heavier downpours) but at least the temperature was still warm - if not slightly humid at times - holding for the day just above +18 degrees along the coastline.  Changeable winds from SSE through SE, variable 15mph up to 22+mph with gusting reaching 24+mph.  The search for the "elusive rare wader.........." (PRD) continued on site today but if it was there, then "elusive" was an understatement!  A combined report from three of our Haven team, gave 18 species of note that included 3 Wheatears on the first turret, 20+ Goldfinches, a Common Tern, 1 Little Egret, 4 Shoveler and views of both a Marsh Harrier and a Barn OwlWaders on and around the scrape area provided counts of 2 Wood and 6 Common Sandpipers, the Spotted Redshank, a Greenshank, 2 Ringed Plovers, 3 Snipe, singles of Dunlin, Curlew and Whimbrel, all alongside 44 Avocets and 54 Blk T Godwits. IM/MR/PRD

2nd - Better weather to a certain degree today - some early rain (a little bit more appeared later), the WSW through SSW winds were variable up to the regions of 20/22mph with some gusting slightly stronger at c25mph.  These wind speeds increased by the evening to 27+mph and 34+ respectively.  Coastline temperatures reached +19+ degrees along the coastline - up from the early morning's +17 degrees.  A survey of the trees, bushes and hedgerows this morning included a search of the area across from the Approach Road entrance, which gave 2 Reed Warblers, 2 Lesser and 4 Common Whitethroats, 1 Willow Warbler and a Blackcap.  On the main site, numbers were of 18+ Linnets around the mounds, 12+ Goldfinch and many "noisy" juvenile Greenfinches.  A Little Owl was located, as was a Barn Owl (1st box), a Marsh Harrier was viewed from the hide, 2 Kestrels were above the field near the second hide and in this same field there were 2 Wheatears.  The scrape, still hosting the Spotted Redshank, held 2 Wood, 1 Green and 6+ Common Sandpipers, 40+ Blk T Godwits, 51 Avocets, 8 Snipe and a single Dunlin, alongside singles of Common Tern and Little Egret, 4+ Grey Herons, 6 Shoveler and 12 Teal.  Four species were noted during a short seawatching session with a Gannet heading N, while a Common Tern, 2 Whimbrels and 3 Oystercatchers flew S.  A Ringed Plover was at this time, located on the sluice. MR.  A brief look from next to the Sailing Club early evening, saw a Marsh Harrier across the fields and also 7 Dunlin that flew (from the vicinity of the scrape) to the shoreline.  Along the Approach Road was a Willow WarblerKA.   

3rd - Very bright with blue skies from early morning with a temperature reading of +17+ degrees by 06.30hrs.  The W through SW winds at speeds of 11mph through 26mph, complete at this time with occasional gusting of up to 29mph.  During the day there were the occasional attempts of drizzle.  Observations across the scrape during the morning until 11.30hrs, saw that the resident Spotted Redshank (winter plumaged adult) had been joined by an adult in full summer plumage and both of these Spot Reds were alongside 2 Wood and 6 Common Sandpipers, 5 Snipe, 1 Ringed Plover (ad), 1 Golden Plover (ad), 54 Avocets and 55+ Blk T Godwits.  There were also singles of Common and Sandwich Terns (both adults), 1 Shelduck (+4 young), 8 Shoveler and some 150+ Greylag Geese.  Viewing across and from the site also provided 2 Marsh Harriers (imm. male + imm. fem) and a male Sparrowhawk, whilst seen as they flew through the area were 40 Sand Martins and 10+ House MartinsPRD.  Surveying through the afternoon gave additions of 1 Dunlin, 1 Med Gull, Snipe were up to a count of 6 by this time and on the pathway to the sluice, there was a single Wheatear.  A Common Tern seen this session may/may not have been the morning bird. IM.

4th - A warm day that again became quite humid at times with temperatures in excess of +18+ degrees along the coastline.  Winds were of a S direction, variable 10mph through 25+mph and gusting reached c30mph.  A morning run along the front, in from the Frinton end and back again - 08.00-09.00hrs - saw of note a Yellow Wagtail on the edge of the Golf Course and 3 Wheatears were on the seawall on the return journey.  A couple of Swifts were fly-overs during this time. PBrSwift movement was noted earlier on the Haven site with 250+ moving South in the short period between 07.15 to 07.30hrs, also a movement of 30+ Sand Martins.  At sea 2 Grey Plovers headed S. GG.

5th - Changeable skies this morning, alternating between bright and then cloud-covered but warm throughout with temperature readings of +17+ degrees before 10.00hrs.  Southerly winds - these also variable - speeds from 4mph through 18mph and occasional extra blasts of c20mph.  Viewing from the hide (as at 09.30hrs), the winter plumaged Spotted Redshank was showing very well and was in the company of 1 Wood and 7 Common Sandpipers, a Ringed Plover, 5 Snipe, 40 Avocets and a total of 47 Blk T Godwits.  8 Shovelers were also noted as being in this vicinity.  A single Marsh Harrier and a Barn Owl were also seen during this survey. IM.  Additional observations, gave that a juvenile Med Gull was on the scrape for a short time and 2 Wheatears were between the two hides, while at the Farm there were 12+ Corn Buntings of note. GG.

6th - The WNW winds that began the day turned through to N for the afternoon and speeds increased from variable 7mph through 18mph with gusts of c20mph, up to 21mph and 27+mph respectively.  A few hit 'n' miss downpours today but still warm at +19+ degrees along the coastline and warmer inland.  The latter part of the day saw some very heavy rain for a while and some thunder and lightning thrown in too!  At least two observers were on site this morning and surveyed the area including that which is opposite the Approach Road.  From this area over the road through to the hide, counts were made of 2 Lesser Whitethroats, 3 of each Blackcaps and Sedge Warblers, 4 Reed Warblers, 4 Common Whitethroats and some 12+ Willow Warblers.  Viewing across the scrape, it's surrounding grazing marsh and the skyline, located a Marsh Harrier, a Barn Owl (1st box), a Common Tern and a Little Egret, also 9 Teal and 5 Shelduck (inc. 4 juveniles).  Waders at this time were the Spotted Redshank, a Greenshank and 2 Redshanks, 2 Wood, 2 Green and 6+ Common Sandpipers, singles of Dunlin and Ringed Plover, 2 Snipe, 14 Lapwings, 37 Blk T Godwits and rounding up this combined report were 42 Avocets. MR/IM.   

7th - Westerly winds were the order of another warm day, varying in strength from light to strong (c9mph through 24mph) and gusting of up to 28mph.  Alternating skies again, blue through dark grey - along with the associated sun and some rain of various degrees!  Surveying the site on this "breezy" morning provided 2 Lesser and 5 Common Whitethroats, 2 Reed Warblers, 3 Blackcaps and a total of 7 Willow Warblers in and around the bushes, along with 2 each of Kestrel and juvenile Green Woodpecker.  Viewing from the hide, the scrape and surrounding areas hosted the Spotted Redshank, 1 Greenshank and 4 Redshanks, 2 Wood, 3 Green and 5+ Common Sandpipers, 2 Dunlin, 44 Avocets and 56 Blk T Godwits, which were alongside 1 Common Tern, 1 Little Egret, 5 Shelducks (inc. 4 juvs), 6 Shoveler and 9 Teal.  Observations from this point, also supplied counts of 2 Marsh Harriers, 1 Barn Owl and 20+ Pied Wagtails.  A Fox also made the notes today, being seen as it walked along the rear of the scrape, successfully "panicking everything" along it's route! MR.   

8th - Although Westerly winds began the day, these changed direction to become SE by mid-afternoon.  Varying wind strengths from 5mph through 13+mph along with gusting of up to 16mph.  Not too much sun to speak off but alot of change with the colours of both the sky and clouds, however temperature readings still remained good and in excess of +18 degrees.  An early start to the morning's observations and with brief checks (in the drizzle) of the bushes and trees, notes were made of 2 Reed and 3 Willow Warblers, 6 Common Whitethroats, the Little Owl and 2 juvenile Green Woodpeckers.  2 Ringed Plovers were located along the beach (possibly the same two were on the scrape slightly later), an interesting wader that flew in with the Ringed Plovers was unfortunately flushed too quickly to get an I.D, while along the seawall itself, were 2 Wheatears.  A Common Tern, 1 Sandwich Tern and 7 Oystercatchers were viewed during a short seawatch, all of these were heading S.  Surveying from the hide, once again gave 2 Marsh Harriers, 1 Barn Owl and 1 Little EgretWader counts in the vicinity of the scrape were of the Spotted Redshank, 1 Redshank, 5 of each Dunlin and Snipe, 2 Wood, 1 Green and 4+ Common Sandpipers, all alongside 35 Avocets and 40 Blk T GodwitsMR.  Early evening viewing out from the Haven coastline gave a dark phase Arctic Skua heading NE circa mid-distance from shore to horizon (17.30hrs), whilst the only other notable species at this time were those of 3 Common Terns and 3 Oystercatchers, all of which were flying SW. PRD.

9th - A slightly misty start in the local area with temperatures of +17+ degrees before 08.00hrs and some very light (barely a breeze) SSE winds.  Occasional gusting by this time had reached up to 12mph - the winds continued to be light (max 10mph/gusts 13mph) through the day.  Generally bright and sunny with the temperature by 14.00hrs being in excess of +21 degrees inland.  Seawatching this morning (08.00 - 09.00hrs) supplied a small selection of species with 2 Common Terns, 3 Grey Plovers, 6 Dunlin, 18 Oystercatchers and 48 Common Scoters flying past the Haven in a SW direction, whilst seen as they fished by a distant trawler were 7 Tern sp. and flying in/off came 11 Cormorants.  A single Wheatear sat upon the seawall.  Observations from the hide gave the Barn Owl (box) and Little Egret once more and a total today of 4 Marsh Harriers.  On and around the scrape and surrounding grazing marsh were 17 Teal, 1 Common Tern, 1 Ringed Plover, the Spotted Redshank, 4 Snipe, 1 Wood and 4+ Common Sandpipers, 34 Avocets and a count of 44 Blk T Godwits.  Surveying generally around the site - trees/bushes/hedgerows/reedbeds - gave 1 Blackcap, 4 Reed and 6+ Willow Warblers and 7 Common Whitethroats, 2 Little Owls (1 viewed/2 heard), also 30+ Goldfinches and on/around the mounds and thistles were 20+ Linnets. MR.  A seawatching session late this afternoon provided 2 Arctic Skuas both of them headed NE, the first of which was a dark phase at 16.50hrs and was quite close, the second was a distant bird at 17.10hrs. PRD.   

10th - A glorious morning, bright sun, light SSE winds (occasional gusting of up to 14mph), temperature readings of +17+ degrees and all before 07.15hrs this morning.  By late afternoon into the early part of the evening, the winds were SE and had picked up during the day to reach a maximum of 16mph and gusting c18mph but on the whole they had remained c12mph.  The heat also increased to in excess of +20 degrees inland.  Surveying the site this morning from 08.45hrs to 12.00hrs, supplied the noted highlights of 2 Whinchats, 1 Wheatear, 6 Willow Warblers and 2 Marsh Harriers, whilst the Waders included 1 Wood, 2 Green and 2 Common Sandpipers, the Spotted Redshank, 5 Snipe, 1 L R P (juv), 23 Avocets and 33 Blk T Godwits.  A single Shoveler and 13 Teal completed the report. PRD.

11th - Another superb hot, sunny and dry day with mostly variable light through moderate winds with some much stronger gusting - the evening saw a drop at times to barely a breeze.  At least two observers were on and around the site this morning with the duration of one of these surveys covering at least from 08.45-12.00hrs (PRD).  A combination of the two reports provided a good selection if nothing else.  A male Ruff had joined the Waders on and around the scrape which included the Spotted Redshank, juvenile L R P, 1 Wood, 1 Green and 3 Common Sandpipers, 3 Dunlin, 3 Snipe, 20 Avocets and 22 Blk T Godwits.  A Common Tern and 30 Teal were also in the vicinity.  A juvenile Peregrine was a notable bird, as were counts of 60+ Goldfinches, 3 Wheatears, 2 Willow and 3 Sedge Warblers.  Seawatching from the site gave views of a Fulmar, 3 Golden Plovers and 5 Oystercatchers all flying S, 2 adult Gannets and 2 Sandwich Terns heading N, whilst milling around off-shore were a total of 3 Common Terns. PRD/PL.  Seawatching early evening (17.45-18.30hrs) supplied 1 dark phase Arctic Skua flying N. MR

12th - Continuing with the very hot weather, the winds today were mostly Easterlies and a good breeze at that along the coastline and waterfronts.  Surveying the trees, bushes and the like today, provided 1 Chiffchaff, 6+ Willow Warblers, 12+ Common Whitethroats and numerous L-Tail, Blue and Great Tits, both Green and Goldfinches and also Linnets.  The Ruff (male), was still on the scrape alongside the Spotted Redshank, 1 Redshank, 1 L R P (juv), 1 Wood and 3 Common Sandpipers, 8 Snipe, 20 Avocets, 24 Blk T Godwits, 40+ Teal and 148 Greylag Geese.  Also viewed from the hide were singles of Yellow Wagtail and Barn Owl and 2 female Marsh Harriers.  Off-shore during a 45 minute morning seawatch, three species were seen to fly N, a Kittiwake, 1 Sandwich and 2 Common Terns. MR

13th - Following a very humid night, this morning - once again very bright and sunny, if a touch "heat hazy" - showed temperature readings in excess of +18 degrees before 07.15hrs.  Early SSW winds were of variable speeds 8mph through 16mph with gusting of up to 19mph.  Mid-morning and where did those dark grey clouds come from??  These dispersed but although still quite bright the sun was not so forthcoming afterwards.  The winds changed to SE in direction and were respectively, by early afternoon, at 17+mph and 21+mph.  Not so many birds around the trees and bushes this morning with just 5+ Willow Warblers noted and for the "Dipping Pond" area, a mixed Tit flock.  Nothing of note passed by during an early seawatch, although 2 Gannets later flew S (viewed while wandering towards the sluice). MR.  A combined report of species viewable from the hide during the morning, provided the culprits from the last few days with a few slight changes of counts but namely 1 male Ruff, the Spotted Redshank, 1 juvenile L R P, 1 Wood, 2 Green and 2 Common Sandpipers, 2 Redshanks, 4 Snipe, 7 Blk T Godwits and 19 Avocets, 1 Common Tern, 78 Teal and "loads of" Greylag Geese.  Also on and around the scrape were 4 Shelduck and singles of Shoveler and Little Egret.  Amongst two Goldfinch flocks - totalling some c70 birds - that were over and around the grazing marsh, a notable fact was that there were a "high number of juvenile birds" within this total. MR/PRD.  An additional sighting for this evening, was that of a S E Owl hunting beyond the scrape at 17.00hrs. IM.

14th - A slightly grey start to the day but very humid at times with temperature readings in excess of +19 degrees and SSE winds of 13mph through 20mph before 07.30hrs, along with gusting of up to c23mph.  Little change to the weather through the day - the sun appeared and the wind direction shifted slightly to SE.  Three observers searched the trees, bushes and hedgerows across the site, surveyed the scrape and sea-watched along the coastline throughout the morning but found it quiet around the leafy habitat, little change on the scrape and no exceptional movements out at sea.  There were however, still a total of 29 notable species within their reports.  A Sparrowhawk and a Marsh Harrier were the only Birds of Prey, 3 Wheatears were listed, also 6+ Willow Warblers, Goldfinches and Linnets (both the latter in good numbers) and a few of each Blackcap, Lesser and Common Whitethroats.  Counts from the hide included: singles of Ruff (male), the Spotted Redshank, L R P (juv), Wood Sandpiper and Little Egret, 2 Redshanks, 2 Green and 4+ Common Sandpipers, 4 Snipe, 9 Shoveler, 20 Avocets, 40 Blk T Godwits and 81 Teal.  Off-shore viewing gave 2 Common and 2 Sandwich Terns, 2 Grey Plovers, 3 Oystercatchers, 6 Dunlin, 2 Common Scoters and 2 Gannets that were all heading S, whilst a third Gannet was the only bird to be seen flying N. PRD/MR/PL.

15th - Another day of mixed skies - cloud-cover both grey and white alternating with bright sun - culminated a few times with attempts of rain and at least one small cloud-burst.  Mainly very humid with temperatures in excess once again of +19 degrees, proving the stronger, cooler winds very pleasant at times.  Fluctuating ESE through SE, the recorded winds varied 18mph to 22+mph with gusting of 26+mph.  A combined morning report from three observers saw that much of their time was spent seawatching from 09.00hrs to 11.15hrs.  Earlier but brief views across the scrape and surrounding area, gave totals of 1 Yellow Wagtail, 1 Marsh Harrier, also 43 Blk T Godwits, 18 Avocets, 4 Snipe, 4+ Common and 2 Green Sandpipers, 1 Dunlin and 1 Redshank.  Still on the scene were the Spotted Redshank, 1 Wood Sandpiper, 1 male Ruff and a juvenile L R P.  During the seawatch, 4 Common Sandpipers were seen to land upon the sluice before disappearing.  Viewed as they flew down the coast in a Southerly direction were counts of 18 Oystercatchers, 4 Teal and 2 Gannets, whilst species following the Northerly coastal track were singles of Kittiwake and Arctic Skua, 3 of each Sandwich and Common Terns (2 Comic's also noted) and rounding up the seawatching totals, 13 Gannets.  A Pied Flycatcher was reported for 11.27hrs as being seen near the Memorials/bushes - this individual being a female/immature bird. PRD/MR/IM.    

16th - Mostly bright and sunny today along with winds of a S through SW direction (early evening these varied occasionally to W).  Wind speeds throughout were of some 27mph to 30+mph and those extra blasts were locally recorded at 34+mph.  Another warm one with coastline temperatures in excess of +20 degrees.  Surveying the site today, took in the trees, bushes and fence lines in the area over the road (opp. Approach Road), around the carpark and past the Sewage Farm, viewing from the hide and also a seawatching session.  Observations over the road during an early start, gave 1 Sedge and 2 Reed Warblers (MR), whilst slightly later back on the main site there were counts of 1 Chiffchaff, 1 Blackcap, 1 Little Owl, 5 Common Whitethroats, 5+ Willow Warblers and 15+ L-T Tits.  Either the bird from yesterday or another female Pied Flycatcher was viewed later in the day (upon the return walk to the carpark) as she sat upon the "fence adjacent to" the Sewage Farm entrance.  The scrape and it's surrounding habitat provided 2 Wood, 1 Green and 6+ Common Sandpipers, singles of Ruff, L R P, Ringed Plover and Redshank, 4 Snipe, 11 Blk T Godwits and 16 Avocets, whilst the Duck count was of 4 Shoveler and 61 Teal.  A Little Egret was also in this vicinity, as were 6 Swifts, a Common Tern and a Marsh Harrier.  The movement off-shore was a bit slim today, however, 14 Oystercatchers and a Curlew flew S and a female Common Scoter was seen to head N. IM/MR/PRD.

17th - Despite some earlier cloud-cover and brisk S through SSE winds (18mph through 26mph/gusts up to 30mph), the temperature along the coast had already reached +20 degrees by 07.30hrs.  By 08.00hrs the sun was in it's glory and winds or not, very humid just slightly inland.  Wind speeds dropped for the afternoon and the temperature reached +22+ degrees along the coast.  Searching the site from 07.15hrs to 11.00hrs, three observers found that the female Pied Flycatcher was still around and flycatching from the fence by the entrance to the Sewage Farm and Feeding Station.  Around the bushes were 4 Willow Warblers of note.  Viewing across the scrape, surrounding grazing marsh and subsequent skyline, the Wader counts were of 2 Wood, 1 Green and 4 Common Sandpipers, 1 L R P (juv), 1 Greenshank, 1 adult Redshank, 5 Snipe, 27 Blk T Godwits and today, just 2 Avocets.  Singles of Little Egret (juv), Common and Sandwich Terns were noted, also 3 juvenile Shelducks, 5 Shoveler, 74 Teal, "there were alot of Greylag Geese" and 6+ Yellow Wagtails.  It appears that with two days of no sightings reported of it, the Spotted Redshank may very well have packed it's beak and cleared off?  An immature male Marsh Harrier was the only Bird of Prey during these survey hours.  The bird of very much interest to the observers this morning, was in fact that of a Hybrid!  Flying over and through the site at 09.00hrs a hybrid Swallow/House Martin was viewed.  A single "normal" House Martin was also within the report, as were 4 Sand Martins, 60+ Swallows and a total of 16 Swifts. PL/IM/PRD. 

18th - As predicted, a glorious sunny day with sweltering temperatures that were in excess of +28 degrees.  Southerly winds were variable from barely a breeze up to some stronger afternoon and evening winds of 22mph with on/off gusting of up to 26mph.  An evening visit between 18.20hrs and 20.15hrs produced 2 Ruff and 2 juv Yellow Wagtails showing well on the close pool, while also on view from the hide were 2 Wood, 1 Green and 2 Common Sandpipers, 3 Snipe, 22 Blk T Godwits, 2 Avocets, 2 Little Egrets and a S E Owl.  A pre-roost gathering of c120 Swallows and 30 mainly juvenile Sand Martins was good to see.  Along the seawall were 2 Wheatears and 15+ Meadow PipitsGG. 

19th - Following a very humid night, the morning continued with the heat-wave, bright sun and mostly blue skies.  The afternoon saw some grey cloud-cover move in but this and the S through SSE light to moderate winds (6mph - 13mph), did little to dent the temperatures that were in excess of +24 degrees.  Mid-afternoon saw a dark phase Arctic Skua flying N off-shore, whilst across and from the site the Raptors of note were 1 each of Common Buzzard, Marsh Harrier, Sparrowhawk and Kestrel. GG/IM.  A Garden Warbler was good to see in the hand. GG/PNt.

20th - Hazy skies complete with a bright ball of sun for early this morning along with initial NNW winds....... barely any breeze to a maximum of 10mph by 07.00hrs, very occasional extra blasts of c14mph and the temperature at this time already in excess of +21 degrees.  The winds later turned to Southerlies, at times reaching 18mph/gusting 21mph - higher speeds but still variable and certainly not constant.  The first report in for the day was of a female/immature Redstart (see Gallery) that was located in the Dell at 07.43hrs.  Also in this area were 2 of each Lesser Whitethroat and Green Woodpecker.  After the search of the Dell, the survey took in the trees, bushes and hedgerows through to the Sewage Farm, also the Mounds and the subsequent views from the hide, out across the scrape and it's surrounding vicinity.  Singles of Kestrel and Little Owl, 2 Chiffchaff, 3 Blackcap, 10+ Common Whitethroats and 15+ Willow Warblers were noted between the Dell and just prior to the mounds, while the latter held 1 Spotted Flycatcher (hedge), 1 Whinchat, 2 Wheatears and "a large flock of Linnets and Goldfinches".  No Avocets were on this morning's report but the scrape was hosting 1 L R P (juv), 2 of each Ruff, Common and Green Sandpipers, 7 Snipe, 27 Blk T Godwits, 67 Teal and some 300+ Greylag Geese(Upon Greylag arrival, some Waders appeared to be re-locating to the newer scrapes).  Rounding up the species for the morning was a male Marsh Harrier (sub-adult). MR.   

21st - A "cooler" start to the day at +20 degrees with cloud-cover and some Northerly winds of speeds 5mph through c9mph along with some occasional gusting of 12mph!  Beyond the fairly dense cloud, the sun was making attempts by 08.00hrs but when it did emerge, it was not for too long.  Winds turned and increased for the afternoon, to SW, 10mph to 15mph and gusting up to 18mph.  Out and about this morning on site and the Redstart (fem/imm) was once again in the Dell as at 09.44hrs, whilst other species of note at this time, were 2 Tree Pipits (not an overly common bird at the Haven by any means) and also a single Whinchat. PRD/MR/IM.  One observer went to the hide from the Dell (beating the Greylags to the scrape) and noted 1 Wood and 2 Common Sandpipers, along with 4 Snipe, 41 Blk T Godwits, 2 Shovelers and 56 Teal.  2 Yellow Wagtails were also in this vicinity.  The bushes and hedgerows around the site held 2 Chiffchaffs, 3 Blackcaps, 4 Lesser and 18+ Common Whitethroats, 22+ Willow Warblers, also 2 of each Green Woodpecker (juvs) and Kestrel and a single Sparrowhawk.  2 Curlews were recorded on this report. MR.  Afternoon surveying from the hide by another observer, provided views of a total of 7 Common Buzzards - these were all in the air together at c14.00hrs.  Along the seawall were 4 Wheatears and additional to the Whinchat count of earlier, 2 Whinchats were near to the second hide.  Located again on the new pool (opp/beyond the memorials) were 2 adult Ruff. PRD.

22nd - Very bright and sunny this morning but cooler again at +17 degrees (07.30hrs).  The day held variable NW wind speeds of 6mph through 24mph while those extra blasts reached 30mph.  For the second day running a Tree Pipit (see Gallery) was viewed on site, initially at c11.30hrs the bird was seen in bushes (area going down to memorials) and either this or a second bird was giving "excellent views" in the willow tree in the Dell at 13.45hrs.  Earlier surveying of the Dell supplied counts of 3 House Sparrows, 2 Lesser and 5 Common Whitethroats, whilst across the site - from the Approach Road to the hide - 8 Willow Warblers were noted, as was a single Little Owl which was in the memorial area.  Observations from the hide throughout the day gave Birds of Prey as 2 Common Buzzards, 5 Marsh Harriers and 3 Kestrels, the Duck count was of 77 Teal, (no reference to the last juvenile Shelducks for five days), alongside totals of 1 Common Tern, 4 Yellow Wagtails, 70+ Goldfinches and 15+ Sand Martins.  The Waders on and around the vicinity of the scrape were 1 Wood and 2 Common Sandpipers, 1 L R P, 2 Ruff and 40+ Blk T GodwitsIM/PRD/MR/PL.  

23rd - Westerly winds were the order of the morning, turning later to S with variable speeds throughout from light to the high end of moderate and some gusting of 22+mph.  Turbulence of extreme speeds along the coast during the afternoon with the various "Jet Species" of the Clacton Air Show!  Generally a pleasant day, mostly bright and again warm.  A Spotted Flycatcher was among today's species noted on the site, this bird was by the Dipping Pond, whilst the Little Owl was in it's tree, the Dell hosted 1 Whinchat, 4 Wheatears and 5 Common Whitethroats and through the rest of the site, some 15 Willow Warblers were viewed.  Observed from the hide, the scrape held 1 Wood and 2 Common Sandpipers, 5 Snipe and 30+ Blk T Godwits and the Raptors in the vicinity and along the skyline were a Common Buzzard and 2 Marsh Harriers.  Rounding up the combined report, 3 Ruff were located on the pools beyond the memorials. IM/MR/PRD

24th - Again some Westerly winds started the day with early morning speeds of 5mph through 14mph and occasional gusting of c18mph.  Cloud-cover was also in-situ but the sun emerged eventually.  Mixed skies continued thereafter and dark grey clouds brought some early evening rain - well it is the start of the Bank Holiday Weekend!!  In the Dell during today's site visits was once again a Tree Pipit and it was alongside 1 Lesser and 5 Common Whitethroats, 2 Willow Warblers and a Wheatear.  Surveying the scrape and it's surrounding area provided 2 Wood, 1 Green and 3 Common Sandpipers, 12+ Snipe and 40 Blk T Godwits, also 2 Yellow Wagtails, 1 Whinchat and 2 Marsh Harriers.  3 Turnstones were seen to land on the sluice, whilst 3 Ruff and another Common Sandpiper were located on the pool beyond the memorials. PL/IM/PRD.  A brief evening visit saw an increase of Ruff on the new pools to a total of 7, reported as 2 adults and 5 juveniles. MR.

25th - A grey, wet and very breezy start to the day.  S through SW winds of speeds up to 28mph along with gusting in the region of 33mph.  By 09.00hrs the clouds were breaking to allow the sun to brighten the situation but this was subsequently followed by on/off rain (some very heavy) for the rest of the duration.  Winds turned to W, increasing in strength to 34+mph and gusting in excess of 39mph.  Today's surveying covered the Dell, main scrape and the pools beyond the memorials, giving counts of 2 Wood and 3 Common Sandpipers, 1 Dunlin, 2 Ringed Plovers, 8 Ruff, 10 Snipe and 24 Blk T Godwits, 1 Little Egret and 1 Common Tern.  Also noted were 1 of each Little Owl and Willow Warbler, 2 Whinchats, 2 Yellow Wagtails and 3 Swifts, whilst the Birds of Prey today, were a Common Buzzard, 3 Marsh Harriers and singles of both Sparrowhawk and Kestrel. IM.

26th - More mixed weather to start the day and again brightening somewhat by mid-morning.  NW winds of 11mph through 22+mph alongside gusting of 27mph and cooler temperatures too.  Birds of Prey featured well today with 1 Peregrine, 2 Common Buzzards, 1 Hobby (this bird in/off), 2 Marsh Harriers, 1 Sparrowhawk and 2+ Kestrels.  Off-shore viewing gave 5 Turnstones and a Common Tern flying S.  Viewing from the hide gave counts of species on and over the scrape area of 1 Golden Plover, 2 Common Sandpipers, 3 Blk T Godwits, 5 Ruff (2ad+3juv), 6 Snipe, 7 Dunlin, 14 Knot and 37 Lapwings, also singles of Little Egret, Common Tern and Whinchat and 2 Yellow Wagtails.  The Little Owl was noted on site and a few Willow Warblers were heard around the very breezy bushes. PL/MR/IM

27th - A mostly bright and warm day but some very intermittent grey clouds and several attempts of rain.  By early evening the winds were at S and had varied in strength throughout the day from 6mph to 28+mph with additional gusting of some 31mph.  Today's observations saw another bird for the Haven 2012 Year List (first year bird for this August month).  Between the sluice and the hide 2 Crossbills* flew over one of the observers - these birds had also been seen and noted by site visitors, whom had reported that the Crossbills had been "drinking on the ground along the front". IM/SHWaders on the main scrape (high water level now) were 1 Wood Sandpiper and 32 Blk T Godwits, whilst 3 Ruff were on the new pools.  Singles of Common Gull and Common Tern were also on the new pools.  Located over the road (opp. Approach Road) earlier this morning was a female/immature Pied Flycatcher, while generally in and amongst the bushes were totals of 1 Lesser and 8+ Common Whitethroats, 1 Sedge, 2 Reed and 10+ Willow Warblers, 2 Blackcaps and 1 Little Owl.  There was a seawatch during the surveys which accounted for 2 Arctic Skuas, 1 Skua sp. (poss L.T) , 5 Dunlin, 11 Oystercatchers and 2 Commic Terns heading S and 12+ Commic Terns that flew N. PL/MR/IM.

28th - After rain through the night and into the early hours, the sun emerged in mostly blue skies and by 08.00hrs the temperature reading along the coast was at +20+ degrees.  Moderate to strong W through WNW winds with gusting slightly in excess of 29mph recorded locally by this time.  Little change to the wind speeds throughout the day but the direction itself had turned to SSW as at late afternoon.  Raptors seen today were those of a Common Buzzard, a Marsh Harrier and a Kestrel, the Little Owl was noted as were 2 Wheatears.  The trees, bushes and hedgerows generally around the site held 1 Chiffchaff, 2 Blackcaps, 3 House Sparrows, 4 Lesser and 8+ Common Whitethroats along with 10+ Willow Warblers.  Observing from the hide during the morning, supplied 330+ Greylag Geese, 4 Shoveler and 60+ Teal, whilst the Waders on and around the scrape area were 1 Green Sandpiper, 16 Blk T Godwits and 2 Ruff (ad+juv) with the new pools hosting a further 5 Ruff (ad+4juvs). MR.  Early afternoon, during a walk along to the Frinton end of the site (i.e. to where the Frinton beach huts begin), a Fulmar was viewed as it flew "right over the seawall" in a SW direction - superb to have one of these birds 'literally' right on our Haven coastline opposed to invariably off-shore at distance.  This survey also noted 6 Wheatears, 1 Whinchat and 2 Swifts along this route. PRD.

29th - The morning began as very pleasant, quite bright and a touch breezy, became sunny and warm (+19+ degrees), then turned as mid-day approached to include some intermittent grey clouds.  The afternoon saw virtually complete cloud-cover and much stronger winds.  SSW in direction, wind speeds varied 19mph through 33+mph and gusting respectively from 31mph through 38+mph.  Two observers at least were on the site this morning and began their viewing with a seawatch.  In a Southerly direction flew 2 Fulmars, 9 Grey Plovers and 9 Teal, whilst heading the opposite way - going N up the coast, was a single Gannet.  On route past the bushes, hedgerows and the viewable new pools to get to the main hide, notes were made of the Little Owl, 1 Lesser Whitethroat and a few Willow Warblers (the latter heard only), singles of both Common and Sandwich Terns along with 5 Ruff that were on the pools, whilst milling over and subsequently through the site were several Sand Martins amongst the Swallows.  On and around the vicinity of the scrape were 31 Blk T Godwits, 60+ Teal and 300+ Greylag Geese and briefly seen, was a Spotted Redshank that decided to up and leave very soon after!  Rounding up the joint report were singles of Marsh Harrier and Sparrowhawk both of which were viewed from the hide. MR/PRD.  

30th - A mix of rain, sun and strong SW winds to start the morning off but by 10.30hrs the sun was prevailing and the winds had turned to Westerlies.  Wind speeds and gusting at this time were variable 20mph through 34+mph and up to 39mph respectively - the speeds remained throughout the day although the wind turned again to NNW by early evening.  On/off rain returned for the afternoon.  The Little Owl was in his tree during the morning survey and the pools played host to 6 juvenile Ruff, whilst on the first turret, a single Wheatear could be seen.  Southbound were some 3 Oystercatchers and 18 Knot that were viewed during an early but short seawatching session.  Observations from the hide included counts of 3 Common Buzzards, 3 Marsh Harriers and 3+ Whinchat, the latter on thistles alongside a Goldfinch.  Singles of Little Egret and Shelduck (juv), along with 4 Shoveler, 90 Teal and 300+ Greylag Geese were in the vicinity of the scrape and surrounding grazing marsh, with Wader totals of 82 Lapwings, 18 Blk T Godwits and a further 2 Ruff (adults). MR/PRD.  Additional Waders in the form of 10 Dunlin were located on the pools mid-afternoon. MR.  Taking the route via the Farm down to the main site today, counts were made of 2 Sedge, 3 Willow and 6 Reed Warblers. PRD

31st - Mostly bright today but much cooler than of late.  The winds being NW in direction were variable throughout the day with speeds up to 23mph and gusting of up to 29mph.  At least two observers were on and around the site today - the main report from a visit 08.15-11.15hrs.  During this time 2 Common Buzzards and 2 Marsh Harriers were seen, as were singles of Chiffchaff, Willow Warbler and Whitethroat, 2 Lesser Whitethroats and 60+ House Martins, also 1 Little Egret.  The Duck count was of a juvenile Shelduck, 16 Shoveler and 70+ Teal, whilst Waders included 1+ Ruff (ad), 1 Greenshank, 31 Blk T Godwits, 100+ Lapwings.  3 Knot were viewed for a while - one of these flew back and forth over the scrape before flying away from the area, the other two found some mud at the rear of the scrape for a short while and then followed suit and left the site.  Unfortunately the water level on the scrape is somewhat high at present and there is very little mud on view. PRD.  Additions for 11.15hrs onwards were of a Wood Sandpiper in the vicinity of the scrape, a Spotted Flycatcher that was located near to the memorials and rounding up the day's species, a Hobby was viewed as it flew over the Sluice Cottages. IM.           

As at 31st August, the Haven 2012 Year List stands at 166.

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