Holland Haven Birding

Official Site Of The Holland Haven Birding Group ©

Recent Sightings

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

(The above "Colour Coding" has changed for several species this year 2013 due to some being now a more regular species at the Haven - which has got to be good, whilst others are unfortunately not seen/recorded here as much as they used to be. This coding is purely defined by ourselves for the Haven site). 

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Site Year Tick: *

FEBRUARY 2013

1st - Rain to start the new month and plenty of it too this morning!  It did ease slightly for late morning but didn't brighten further until c13.00hrs.  NW winds of up to 9mph initially with few extra blasts but slightly stronger general winds for the afternoon ..........and gusting of at least 18+mph later on.  An early morning walk - in the rain - from the Frinton end of the site, noted 230+ Brent Geese on the arable beyond the Golf Course, while a further 25 Brents were sat upon the sea.  2 Barn Owls were located, one being on a post (by rough meadow) out in the wet, the other sat for more than an hour, sheltering on a post by the metal gate to the rear of the scrape.  A Blk T Godwit, 5 Snipe, 74 Lapwings, a Grey Heron and 7 Shelduck were counted on and around the scrape area with the field next to the scrape holding 1 Little Egret and the Curlews.  Surveying the area near to Tariq gave singles of Kestrel, Green Woodpecker and 2 Fieldfares and further down the carpark by the Dipping Pond counts of 7 Blackbirds alongside the Great Tits.  Observations also yielded both Common and L B B Gulls, 24 Greylag Geese that flew over and the sound of singing Skylarks. BS

2nd - A bit of a mixed bag of weather this morning that included snow!  Sun, blue skies, grey clouds, rain and hail were also in today's bag.  Some cold NNW winds (NW by mid-day) of speeds throughout the duration of up to 17+mph along with gusting of up to 34mph.  A morning walk from the carpark to the hide and the return journey provided views of 1+ Barn Owls again today.  The first was showing very well while it quartered the grazing marsh surrounding the new pools, whilst the second bird was seen from the hide - being at one of the boxes.  Counts from the hide included a single Blk T Godwit, 3 Snipe, 2 Shelducks, 10+ Shoveler, c300 Wigeon and c350 Teal.  The Emperor Goose (sleeping) was again with the Greylags which themselves numbered c35.  Also noted were 4 Turnstones that were located on the new pools. IM.  Additional observations included 1 Little Egret, 2 Green Woodpeckers and 3 Reed Buntings all located over the road (opp. Approach Road) and a single Song Thrush, 3 Fieldfares and 16 Blackbirds throughout the carpark.  Also counts of 63 Lapwings and 5 Curlew. GG

3rd - WSW winds this morning of speeds up to 19mph along with gusting up to c34mph.  Overcast and very cold with temperature readings of just +1 degree - this did increase later but it was still bitterly cold in the strong winds both inland and on the coast.  Two observers took a walk to the hide and back to the carpark today, providing a report that included a Merlin that was atop a bush near the Golf Course, singles of Little Egret and Golden Plover that both flew over the scrape, 50+ Curlew on the grazing marsh and 3 Turnstones that were located on the beach during the return walk.  Across the scrape itself and the surrounding area, counts were made of 1pr Gadwall, 2 Shelduck, c10 Shoveler, c200 Teal and c350 Wigeon.  The Emperor Goose was still in-situ. MR/IM.    

4th - After the early rain the morning brightened considerably but the winds were still very cool.  WNW winds of up to 20mph along with gusting up to 36mph were in play for most of the day turning by the evening to WSW and again remaining quite strong.  At least two observers were on site this morning, coming in from each end of the site and also viewing from the hide.  Both the Great Tits and a flock of c15 L-T Tits were noted as being very vocal along the Approach Road, whilst the bushes and hedgerows through to the sluice held just a few Greenfinches and 2 Song Thrushes.  The sluice at this time had 4 Turnstones on it.  From the Frinton end towards the hide supplied 53 Curlews and 12 Fieldfares in the rear field, 2 of each Stock Doves and Skylarks (also vocal) and a Common Gull, a Barn Owl was noted at one of the boxes.  Across the scrape and it's surrounding areas, the counts were of 1 Blk T Godwit, 22 Snipe, 66 Lapwings, 1 Little Egret, 4 Gadwall, 4 Shelducks, 12 Shoveler, c250 Teal, c300 Wigeon and 48+ Greylag Geese.  A Common Buzzard was also in the vicinity. MR/BS.  The return wander past the sluice, provided views of a Shag* (see Gallery) that was "paddling South close off-shore........last seen heading past the Boating Club". MR.  

5th - It might have been a very bright day but it was bitterly cold in the Westerly winds!  Speeds of up to 20mph and gusting of 33+mph straight across the open lands - definitely a very chilly one indeed.  By early evening the wind direction had turned to SW and a small amount of snow had fallen but although this began to settle, it soon melted.  Two observers were again on the site and a visit was also made to the Farm area.  Blk T Godwit numbers were up to a count of 3 today while Snipe were at 10+ and Lapwings at just 12 - many of the latter two species quite probably nestled down to keep out of the gale force winds.  Gadwall numbers were also up on yesterday's count to a total of 5, with Shelducks at 3 and Shoveler still at 12.  The Teal and Wigeon were spread across the scrape and the new pools with c250 and c300 respectively. MR.  The Farm held a bit more of a variety today with counts of 9 Sanderling, 22 Fieldfares, 40+ Skylarks and 300+ Brent Geese across the arable, while other Farm area additions were of 2 Green Woodpeckers, 4 Mistle Thrush and 5 Goldfinches. MR/IM.

6th - It was a very bright and sunny morning for a while before the skies turned grey and later in the day darker still before giving us several heavy falls of sleet and rain!  NNW winds prevailed for the majority, changing only slightly to NW and reverting to NNW.  General speeds were up to c23mph and gusting on/off throughout, reached 39mph by the middle of the afternoon.  The Kingfisher was showing well over the road again this morning and back on the main site, a Reed Bunting was seen in the clearing by the Sailing Club Compound. MR.  Walking the route through the carpark to the sluice and onto the hide and back, gave nothing of particular note in the trees, bushes and hedgerows and just a single Sanderling was on the sands next to the sluice.  Singles of Common Buzzard, Sparrowhawk, Kestrel and Barn Owl were all viewable from the hide, as were singles of both Little Grebe and Little EgretBlk T Godwits and Snipe were both at counts of 3 of each, Lapwings numbered 58 and Curlews at c50.  Ducks at this time, featured 2 drake Gadwall and 12+ Shoveler along with Teal and Wigeon numbers much as per yesterday's.  A single Pale-Bellied was amongst c500 Brent Geese that were also surveyed from the hide. MR/IM.

7th - A brilliant, bright and sunny morning but so very cool at just +1 degree.  The NW winds of c14mph along with gusting up to 28mph were definitely not helping with the temperature, which remained bitterly cold throughout the whole day.  Several observers were visiting the site this morning and the surveys carried out, included that of a WeBS count.  A Little Egret was over the road early on and the bushes/hedgerows both there and along the Approach Road were noted as holding "good numbers" of vocal Robins, Greenfinch, Tits and Chaffinch.  Singles of Redwing and Fieldfare flew over the carpark. MR/IM.  Off-shore, a Marsh Harrier was seen to fly South during a short sea-watch whilst 6+ Red-T Divers decided to just go 'back and forth'. IM/MR/PR/LR.  Once again, singles of Barn Owl, Common Buzzard and Sparrowhawk were viewable from the hide, as were 2 Kestrels.  The Emperor Goose was amongst 67 Greylag Geese who in turn were alongside 2 Gadwall, 2 Shelducks, 7 Shoveler and 135 Teal.  The Wigeon count of 900 for today, represented the total of all the Wigeon across the 'site' as per for WeBS.  Waders located across the scrape and surrounding grazing marsh areas were 1 Blk T Godwit, 11 Snipe, 45 Lapwings and 48 Curlew. MR/SC/IM.  

8th - Another morning of NW through NNW winds with early speeds being of 11mph and gusting of up to 23mph.  Later in the day, the general strength dropped slightly to c7mph and there was a turn in direction to WNW.  Mostly bright for the duration but on/off cloud throughout - culminating in rain for the early evening.  Time spent on the site today took in the walk from the carpark through to the third turret.  Not too much of any particular note around the trees, bushes and hedgerows of the carpark and surrounds, although 'reasonable numbers' of Blue and Great Tits and Greenfinches were seen.  After yesterday's count of 900 Wigeon, there were still on site some 700+/- of these ducks.  Teal and Shoveler were today at c100 and 10+ respectively across the scrape and surrounding marsh - areas of which were all viewed from the path at the top of the field/seafront.  6 Snipe, 42 Curlews, 100+ Lapwings, 72 Greylag Geese and the Emperor Goose (island) were seen from this point.  A Barn Owl was at one of the boxes, the rocks under the seawall near the first turret held 3 Turnstones and completing this report, there were 2 Mute Swans on the Golf Course Fairway for the second day. IM.

9th - A bitterly cold morning with quite a deep frost covering pretty much everything in sight.  The temperature was still at zero by 08.00hrs but finally increased to +4 degrees quite late in the day.  At least the WSW through W winds were initially fairly light at c5mph.  By the evening rain was in play.  At least one visit was made to the site today although it was found to be generally quiet.  The Tits and Greenfinches were still evident in the carpark bushes and hedgerows but that was about it for that area.  5 Snipe were the only notable waders viewable from the hide - singles of both Little Egret and Little Grebe were also observed.  The Duck 'species' were much as recently but there was a vast reduction on the last few days of Wigeon these being down to c300, while the Teal had doubled to c200 and were alongside 2 Gadwall, 4 Shelduck and 6+ Shoveler.  Still accompanied by the Emperor Goose there was a total of 50 Greylag Geese on and around the scrape vicinity. IM

10th - Not a very nice morning with plenty of rain around and complete with very strong SSE winds of up to 28mph and gusting of up to 38mph.  Bitterly cold throughout, gusting had increased to 46+mph by the evening.  Temperature readings failed to reach above +3 degrees and the wind-chill factor kept this much less along the coast. Two observers visited the site during the early afternoon but with the severity of the cold winds both these visits were fairly brief.  The carpark bushes 'were void of any birds' whilst species and counts were slightly different across the scrape to those viewable from the hide yesterday.  A Little Egret, 5 Turnstones, 6 Snipe, c10 Curlew and c50 Lapwings were noted across this and the surrounding area, as were 3 Shelducks, 4 Gadwall, 4 Shoveler, c100 Teal and a slight increase again in Wigeon to c400.  A male Peregrine was seen as he hunted across the scrape - he succeeded in putting up the Wigeon but was empty handed at the end of this particular flight. IM/AD.

11th - Snow during the night left a thin layer for the early morning along with once again, bitterly cold temperatures.  Strong Easterly winds of 18mph and gusting of up to 34mph - together with rain, snow and sleet - continued to remain in evidence throughout the day.  Afternoon visits made by two observers, took in a half-hour seawatch and viewing from the hide.  The seawatch provided just 3 Red-T Divers of any note and these were all flying N.  A Little Egret was viewable from the hide again, initially along with 7 Snipe, 7 Gadwall, 12 Shoveler, 200 Teal and the Wigeon that were back up to c600.  Having been disturbed from the arable over the road (farmer walking his land), 3 Turnstones, 10+ Dunlin and 420 Lapwings flew across to join the initial noted species.  Of 10 Cormorants that were on the island, two were in 'superb breeding plumage'.  The final species on today's report was that of a Barn Owl seen flying over the grazing marsh beyond the memorials upon the return wander to the carpark area. MR/PRD.

12th - Another bitterly cold day where the temperature did actually reach +2 degrees but by the early evening it was back down to just +1, together with 9mph cold NE winds.  Several attempts of snow happened throughout the day.  Surveying from the carpark through to the hide gave very little over and above the last few days, although the carpark bushes did provide a single Fieldfare but just a handful of Blue Tits and Greenfinches.  Observing the scrape and it's surrounding area from the hide, gave counts of 1 Little Egret, 4 Snipe and 26 Curlew, also 2 Gadwall, 12+ Shoveler, c200 Teal and 'a very flighty' c500 Wigeon.  Some 200+/- Brent Geese were in this vicinity.  The Farm supplied a view species today, including a flock of 16 Fieldfares and 1 Redwing that were viewed as they moved around the paddocks.  Goldfinch and Mistle Thrush numbers located at the Farm were 12 and 2 respectively. IM.

13th - Although the sun was around for a while today - in a mostly cloud-covered sky - the temperature again failed to reach above +2 degrees.  SSE through S winds of speeds up to 20mph being predominant along with gusting of up to 35mph with the gusting rising to 40mph by dusk.  Dusk also brought with it, a small snow shower followed by rain.  Initial views by one observer gave a Little Egret (MR) over the road, whilst the rounds generally on the site today were covered by two observers and a joint report.  An increased number of Blackbirds were seen throughout the carpark bushes along with 2 Fieldfares at this time - another 3 Fieldfares were later viewed from the hide.  Surveying across the scrape, surrounding grazing marsh and viewable skyline also provided 6+ Curlew, 7 Snipe, 104 Lapwings, 2 Gadwall and 11 Shoveler, c200 Teal, 400+ Wigeon, 20 Brent and 97 Greylag Geese and their accompanying Emperor Goose.  Singles of both Common Buzzard and Kestrel were noted, as were 2 Reed Buntings.  2 Sanderlings were located on the beach and 3 Turnstones on the groyne, whilst feeding close in-shore were both a Red-T Diver and Shag.  Completing the report was a Woodcock that flushed from the edge of the mounds when the observers were returning past this point. MR/IM.

14th - After a night of fairly constant rain, the start of the morning was still a bit "hit'n'miss" with the downpours.  The rain eventually cleared to give a brighter outlook with some sun and the temperature went from a +4 degree start to +7 degrees before mid-day.  W through WNW winds of up to 12mph and occasional gusting of up to 22mph.  No reports returned.

15th - A dry and fairly bright day for the majority with a cool +3 degree start that warmed up to +8 degrees.  Winds of a W through WNW direction - for which the speeds varied 8mph up to 11mph.  No reports returned.

16th - A change of wind direction for today to ESE and these were of moderate 11mph speeds.  Blue skies were noticeable with a variation of cloud/cloud-cover along with some on/off sun across the area.  Not overly cold by mid to late morning and pleasant going into the early afternoon - the temperature did however, suddenly drop before dusk!  A visit to site took in a brief walk as far as the sluice area, enabling the viewing of the scrape and coastline from the pathway.  8+ Snipe, 8 Shoveler, 9 Shelducks, 250+ Teal and 500+ Wigeon were on and around the scrape area, whilst up from the flooded meadow, flew 22 Curlew that headed out to sea and proceeded in a Northerly direction up the coast.  On the sluice rocks at this time were 2 Purple Sandpipers. IM.  An additional report was of 1 pair Pintails that were viewed as they drifted off-shore with a small Wigeon flock. MR

17th - ESE winds again today, being of speeds up to 12mph.  Although there was a heavy frost this morning, blue skies and bright sunny weather were around for a few short hours to start with........... then the fog came down!  As it tends to along the coast, the fog rolled quickly and thickly and whilst it did lessen in density later, it hung around for the rest of the day.  Temperature readings of +4 degrees seemed optimistic - cause it sure felt colder than that!  At least two observers were on the site during the morning.  The bushes, trees and hedgerows on route from the carpark to the hide supplied a single Fieldfare along with 'reasonable numbers' of Blackbirds, Blue and Great Tits, Chaffinches and Greenfinches.  Below the seawall, the groyne held 5 Turnstones of note.  Prior to being suddenly 'engulfed' by the fog, the scrape and surrounding grazing marsh provided counts of 1 pair Tufted Ducks, 3 Shelducks, 16 Shoveler, 1 Little Egret, 1 Blk T Godwit, 32+ Snipe, 40+ Golden Plovers, 57 Curlews and c60 Greylag GeeseTeal and Wigeon were still in very good numbers on the site today, at 250+ and 500+ respectively. IMGrey Wagtail* was an addition to the report with a single bird being observed just inside the Sewage Farm gates. PL.  A Common Buzzard was also noted today, as was a Purple Sandpiper from the south end of the site. AM.

18th - Some early morning sun making for another bright start, alongside E through ESE winds of c8mph and just a bit chilly!  Grey cloud-cover that moved in by 09.00hrs did clear to a certain extent to allow the continuation of the bright weather and an eventual temperature reading of +4 degrees was reached.  Fog was moving in by dusk and the temperature dropped sharply.  Several observers were on and around the site at various times today.  A male Marsh Harrier was the first noted bird from the Approach Road end of site, seen across the adjacent marsh. MR.  The bushes through to the sluice were said to be 'like Spring' with singing Chaffinches alongside the now regular Tits, Greenfinches etc.  2 Fieldfares were viewed by the Owl's tree near the memorials early on, while the later return walk gave 2 Barn Owls over the marsh beyond this area.  The route past the sluice gave a single Ringed Plover* whilst three species of Wader were viewed from the hide - being 30+ Snipe, 40+ Curlew and 114 Lapwings.  Ducks and Geese included 1 White-fronted Goose* in with 70+ Greylags, 4 Gadwall, 6 Shelduck, 22 Shoveler, c200 Teal and c500 Wigeon.  1 Little Egret, 1 Common Buzzard and 2 Kestrels were also viewable from the hide at this time. MR/IM. Morning visits also gave 4 Common Gulls that were located on the Golf Course. BS.  Early afternoon provided a S E Owl quartering the marsh to the right of the hide and also 2 Med Gulls, one on the scrape, the other on the sluice rocks. MR/PRD.  An afternoon survey during a wander from the Frinton end, taking in the fields and the Farm supplied a singing Skylark, a flock of 25+ Linnet, 7 Stock Doves and 2 Rooks in the former areas whilst the Farm held Thrush species of 1 Song, 1 Mistle and 15+ Fieldfare, also 2 L-T Tits, 1 Greenfinch, 5 Goldfinches and 1 Kestrel. BS.

19th - After thick fog throughout the night and freezing temperatures, this morning saw a heavy frost (-2 degree) and an early haze across the area.  The sun was out pretty early too, alongside NW winds of c5mph.  The day throughout proved to be quite pleasant and the temperature reached a high of +9 degrees!  At least four observers were on and around the site, again the areas were covered from both Holland and Frinton ends in and beyond the hide both ways.  The combined reports saw highlights of 4 Pink Footed Geese* amongst 2 Canada* and 60+ Greylag Geese, also (at 11.45hrs) at least 9 Common Buzzards were soaring high above the arable whilst a single Common Buzzard was perched atop the fence at the rear of the scrape.  The scrape itself and the surrounding areas, held 1 Little Egret, 2 Golden Plovers, 3 Blk T Godwits, 16 Snipe, 40+ Curlew and 100+ Lapwings.  These were alongside 1 pair Gadwall, 2 Shelducks, 11 Shoveler, c200 Teal and c400 Wigeon.  Throughout the bushes, hedgerows and reedbeds around the site and taking in the area opposite the Approach Road, counts included 2 Green Woodpeckers, 1+ Fieldfares (near Tariq), 5 Stock Doves, Skylarks, good numbers - now expected and hopefully will further increase - of Green and Chaffinches, Robins, Wrens and Tits, also 3 Reed Buntings (1pr + singing male), 1 Kingfisher (over road), 1 pair Mute Swans, 2 Grey Herons, 1 Kestrel and 2 Barn Owls.  A total of 5 Turnstones were located on the sluice. IM/MR/PRD/BS.

20th - Not in the minus figures this morning but still very chilly at just +3 degrees - this dropped to +2 degrees by the early part of the afternoon!!  Mostly grey cloud-cover through the morning but upon getting the chance, the sun proved very bright, whilst the afternoon saw patches of blue sky too!  Easterly winds throughout of up to 19mph with alot of additional gusting of mostly 30-31mph.  A morning wander from the Frinton end of site going up to the Farm, provided views of a single Common Gull on the Golf Course and 9 Stock Doves on the field beyond, whilst 2 Moorhens, 2 Meadow Pipits, a small flock of Linnets and a vocal Skylark were noted along the route.  Surveying the Farm area gave counts of 3 House Sparrows, 4 Blackbirds, 19 Fieldfares and a single Green Woodpecker.  These observations were completed with that of a fly-over by some 150/200 Brent Geese. BS A second report, included for the area opposite the Approach Road, a brief sea-watch and views had from the main hide.  A Kingfisher was again over the road, 2 Sanderlings were feeding on the sluice and heading N, a single Red-T Diver was the only notable bird to be seen off-shore.  Across the scrape, surrounding areas and viewable skyline were 1 Little Grebe, 1 Dunlin, 2 Blk T Godwits, 4+ Turnstones, 35+ Snipe, 40+ Curlew and 76 Lapwings, also 10 Gadwall, 12 Shelducks, 15 Shoveler and as per yesterday c200 Teal and c400 WigeonGreylag Geese numbers were up at 139 plus the 'plastic' Emperor.  Just 3 Common Buzzards were around today, as was a single Barn Owl. IM/MR.

21st - A bitterly cold day from start to dusk........ and getting colder still from dusk onwards!!  The temperature was at barely +1 degree for the majority, falling to zero before late afternoon and occasional snow flurries were noted (just a few miles inland there was a snow blizzard going on).  Early Easterly winds of up to 19mph turned later to ENE and these were alongside gusting of 27+mph.  No reports returned.

22nd - A drop to below zero during the night left the morning to begin as icy with grey skies and struggling to reach +1 degree.  ENE winds of up to 17mph and gusting of 31+ at times - the direction turned to NNE by mid-afternoon.  A few snow flurries were around during the morning but the afternoon saw sleet, snow and hailstones!  At least three observers visited the site (circa mid-morning) and it was the hide that all three surveyed from for this report.  Singles of Dunlin and Blk T Godwit were noted, as were 2 Snipe, 5 Turnstones and 38 Curlew, 8 Gadwall and c100 Teal, alongside an increased number of Wigeon again, these being at c850 today.  98 Greylag Geese and friend were on and around the scrape and surrounding areas.  The viewable area/skyline also provided singles of Peregrine, Marsh Harrier and Kestrel and some 10 Pied Wagtails. IM/SC/PC.

23rd - Another icy morning with mostly grey cloud-covered skies.  NE winds of up to 15mph and gusting up to 29mph being predominant throughout the morning alongside temperature readings of +1 degree but no doubt much colder with the wind-chill factor along the coastline.  The winds turned to NNE later in the afternoon, the temperature dropped to zero and sleet had appeared by dusk.  Several observers made visits to the site during the morning and the afternoon.  Located across the road on the flooded meadow this morning was an adult Yellow-Legged Gull*. GG.  Slightly later in this same area (opposite the Approach Road) were 2 Little Egrets and a single Sparrowhawk of note. IM.  Surveying from the hide late morning, provided counts of 1 Ruff, 1 Snipe, 4 Turnstones, 2 Gadwall, c150 Teal and 600+ Wigeon, all alongside 73 Greylag and 2 Canada Geese (+Emperor).  A Common Buzzard was atop the bushes between the owl boxes and a Peregrine was also viewed. IM/AD.  A Goldcrest was very vocal by the five-bar gate. AD.  During the afternoon, a brief seawatch took place that gave 4 Pink Footed Geese that flew in/off and dropped down onto the scrape. MR/IM.  Additional sightings were of 3 Red-T Divers N, 37 Curlew and 43 Lapwing that flushed from the scrape early on and 2 Fieldfares that were by Tariq. GG.

24th - NNE winds this morning of speeds up to 18mph alongside gusting up to and in excess of 32mph.  With ice still on ponds, brooks and some habitat, a couple of sleet showers during the morning and the temperature of +2 prior to mid-day were doing little to allow anything to thaw successfully.  Afternoon temperatures dropped to +1 and the winds turned slightly to N.  The bitterly cold weather did not inspire any long visits to site this morning but provided views that included 2 Common Scoters drifting off the sluice area - being mobbed by the Gulls!  A single Dunlin, 5 Snipe and 5 Turnstones were on the scrape, whilst further observations from the hide gave 1 Shoveler, 6 Gadwall, 150 Teal and c500 WigeonGreylag Geese numbered 100+ in this vicinity (+Emperor) and although they flew around a few times, 4 Pink-Footed Geese decided not to drop in during this survey.  A Colour-ringed Herring Gull was noted. MR/IM.

25th - Rain/drizzle for the early morning was followed by a generally grey and blustery day.  N through NNE winds of up to 18mph with strong gusting of up to 30mph.  The temperature did reach a 'high' of +4 degrees by mid-day - which after recent days was a bonus (if only it had felt warmer!).  At least two observers were surveying areas of the site today.  Initially a Barn Owl was viewed during a brief search across the road, whilst a S E Owl was slightly later, seen to be quartering the marsh beyond the carpark/memorials - near the latter were 1 Song Thrush and 2 Fieldfares. MR.  A Common Scoter (drifting N) and a Purple Sandpiper that flew N, were both located during a wander to the third turret.  Observations from the hide provided the viewing of 1 Marsh Harrier while on the scrape itself and the surrounding grazing marsh there were 1 Dunlin, 2 Turnstones, 6 Snipe, c50 Curlew and c100 Lapwings, also 1 Shelduck, 2 Shoveler, 6 Gadwall, c150 Teal and c450 WigeonGeese in this vicinity at the time were 4 Pink Footed and 110 Greylag (+E). MR/IM.

26th - Another rain/drizzle start to the day and again followed by a day of grey cloud-cover but at least with some lighter NE winds (c12mph) the +4 degrees on the temperature gauge did seem more of a reality than yesterday.  Generally though, fairly mild considering with a slight misty hue at times.  The site had coverage of the area across the road, carparks through to the hide, along the route to the second turret and also up at the Farm.  Good views were had once more of the Barn Owl over the road, as the bird quartered the marsh beyond the metal bar-gate/tree arch.  A total of 3 Little Egrets were on the flooded meadow altogether at this time.  The Approach Road held 1 Redwing of note and the S E Owl was hunting the same area as yesterday.  4 Purple Sandpipers were located on the rocks below the slope/seawall opposite the second hide, whilst the Waders present on the scrape and it's surrounding area today were 1 Dunlin, 2 Blk T Godwits, 5 Turnstones, 16 Snipe, 52 Curlew and c100 Lapwings.  The Duck count consisted of 4 Gadwall, 4 Shelducks, 8 Shoveler, c150 Teal and c400 Wigeon with the Geese alongside these being 96 Greylags and 4 Canada (+E).  Rounding up the species viewable from the hide were singles of Common Buzzard and Marsh Harrier and 2 Kestrels.  Time spent surveying the Farm areas within the 'Holland Haven Birding' boundaries, supplied a mixed Thrush flock in the paddocks comprising 2 Redwings, 2 Mistle Thrush and 39 Fieldfares.  Beside the Farm pond, the trees held 10 Goldfinches of note. IM.   

27th - Some very changeable skies throughout today - mostly in varying shades of grey but the sun making quite a few appearances to brighten but unfortunately not warm the conditions.  NE winds of c15mph prevailing with regular gusting up to and in excess of 24mph.  At least two observers made visits to the site during the morning, locating 1 Little Grebe (IM) on the brook, a Brambling (MR) in the hedgerows of the Sewage Farm, singles of Fieldfare and Song Thrush along with a few Blackbirds across the carpark and during a short session of seawatching, 2 Gannets* (ad) and 12+ Red-T Divers all flying N.  The 'Goose' collection on and around the scrape included 1 Canada, 4 Pink-Footed and 112 Greylags (+E), whilst Duck counts were of 2 Shoveler, 4 Shelduck, 4 Gadwall, 200 Teal and c500 Wigeon.  Also in this vicinity were singles of Little Egret and Blk T Godwit, 3 Dunlin, 4 Snipe, 5 Turnstones, 54 Curlew and 70+ Lapwings.  A Peregrine, viewed from the hide, concluded this report. MR/IM.    

28th - Although dry and fairly bright through the morning, the NNE winds of c15mph and the gusting of up to 24mph made for some bitterly cold site visits.  Observing from near to the sluice, 40 Barnacle Geese* (IM) were viewed at 08.58hrs as these birds flew N.  Only a short time later, 27 Barnacles were seen to fly back in towards the site - from the N - very indecisive for a while, these finally settled on the scrape at 09.25hrs (then onto the field, right of hide) and were viewable from the hide/from the lay-by, until at least mid-day.  The 27 may have been 'some of' or birds 'over and above' the 40. IM/BS/KA.  On and around the scrape and grazing marsh areas, were 3 Little Egrets, 2 Canada and 34 Greylag Geese, 1 Dunlin, 4 Turnstones, 16 Snipe, 50+ Curlew, 120+ Lapwings, 6 Gadwall, 8 Shoveler, 10 Shelducks, 200+ Teal and 400+ Wigeon.  A Common Buzzard was on a post beyond the scrape, a Barn Owl was atop a post in the field adjacent to the Golf Course and 8 Pied Wagtails were noted. IM/BS.

As at 28th February, the Haven 2013 Year List stands at 101.

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