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.

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Site Year Tick: *

NOVEMBER 2012  

1st - Following a night of virtually constant rain, the morning continued to be overcast and wet - although distant breaks in the sky were appearing by c08.45hrs.  WSW winds of varying speeds 15mph through 35mph along with gusting of up to 43mph.  Today's observations began from the Frinton end of the site, taking in the areas through to the main hide and the return wander.  Showing very well on the side of the Golf Course below the third turret were 1pr Stonechat, whilst on the rocks by this same turret was a Rock Pipit and further along, 6 Turnstones were located on the beach under the first turret.  Time spent viewing from the hide across the scrape, surrounding area and skyline, provided a second pair of Stonechats (in front of the Owl box), a single Little Egret, 2 Common Buzzards and an adult male Marsh Harrier - the latter two species "giving excellent views".  The Wader counts gave 1 Ruff, 7 Blk T Godwits, 15+ Snipe and 110 Lapwings, while the viewable Duck species and numbers were 1 Shelduck, 28 Shoveler, 120 Wigeon and 230 TealIM

2nd - Fairly bright to start with this morning, then becoming overcast for a short while before the return of the sun and a brighter sky (with a few more white than grey clouds!).  SW winds of variable speeds, 17+mph through 26+mph, along with gusting of up to 32mph recorded locally for the morning and into the afternoon.  The afternoon also saw a good five-minute 'heavy burst' of reasonable-sized hailstones.  Later in the day the winds turned to W through WNW with an increase of speeds and gusting up to 30+mph and 33mph respectively.  At least three observers were on and around the site today with the first joint report providing counts of a female Peregrine, a single Redwing in the carpark, a single Siskin, 3 Linnets and 4+ Lesser Redpolls were fly-overs as were some of the 20+ Goldfinches noted during this visit (the other Goldfinches being on the carpark bushes).  Blackbirds were in numbers of 40+ around the site and there were 2 Stonechats (male+fem) located.  Just four Wader species noted during this survey being singles of Ruff and Turnstone, 6+ Snipe and 7+ Blk T Godwits, whilst 20+ Shoveler and 150+ of both Teal and Wigeon were the Duck counts. PRD/IM.  Additional observations were of 3 Brent Geese and 10 Stock Doves flying S, a Grey Wagtail and quite possibly over and above the previous report 20+ Blackbirds (6 at least in the ringing compound). SC.

3rd - A grey start to the day (and some rain) before brightening up but still with alot of cloud around.  Predominantly Westerly winds throughout that reached speeds of up to 30mph and gusting of up to 36mph - these did drop for a short while just prior to dusk.  A Guillemot heading N was a notable bird during a short seawatch at the start of one observer's visit this morning, whilst the walk to the third turret gave a Purple Sandpiper on the rocks beneath this said turret, 5 Turnstones below the seawall by the second turret and views of 4 Swallows struggling to fly S in the strong winds.  Not to be ignored, the first turret was where a Sparrowhawk perched giving some "excellent views". IM. Surveying from the hide by two observers during the day, provided counts of 1 Dunlin, 2 Ruff, 4 Snipe, 6 Blk T Godwits, an adult Med Gull and a Red-Legged Partridge, also c30 Shoveler, c120 Wigeon and c200 Teal. IM/AlfM.  Both of the reports commented on the fact of Blackbirds still being in good numbers, whilst the carpark bushes held 6+ Redwing, 1 Blackcap and a single Little Owl (IM), with 2 Green Woodpeckers and from the carpark - a fly-over Lesser Redpoll (AlfM).  3 Turnstones (+/-) the previous birds were viewed and another site visitor reported a Little Grebe in the brook/channel. AlfM

4th - A change of direction and a definite increase in strength of the winds for this morning.  SE through SSE with speeds up to 37+mph before mid-morning and gusting of up to 43mph.  Apart from a couple of very slight weather breaks - cold, dismal and non-stop rain.  The afternoon did eventually turn brighter and the rain stopped but it remained cool to say the least and very cloudy.  By dusk the winds had turned again through to W/WNW.  No reports returned.

5th - Bright from early morning complete with some blue sky, the sun and mostly clouds of the white variety!  There was little change during this fairly pleasant but 'chilly' day, the initial NNW winds turned slightly by the evening to NW and speeds increased from initial c12mph up to 17+mph and gusting from 15mph up to 22mph.  A combined report from three observers prior to c14.00hrs noted that a Reed Bunting was in the bushes by the Sailing Club, 2 Lesser Redpolls were short-staying visitors to the Dell area, a single Chiffchaff was found in the hedge by the Dipping Pond and generally around the tree/bush habitat were 2 Song Thrushes, 8 Redwings and 40+ Blackbirds.  2+ Sparrowhawks and a Little Owl were also in these areas and 12 Siskin flew N overhead.  2 Little Egrets were located on the grazing marsh beyond the Approach Road, then further onto the site 4 Turnstones were on the sluice.  Today's survey also included a wander to the Frinton end of site, giving views of 1 S E Owl, 1 adult male Marsh Harrier, 3 Kestrels, 20+ Meadow Pipits, a fly-over Redpoll sp., 2 Swallows - that for reasons known only to themselves - were heading in a Northerly direction, while the only notable movement off-shore was that of 4 Brent Geese (3N+1S).  Time spent observing from the hide found that the Emperor Goose (presumed escapee) was once again amongst the Greylag Geese, a Water Rail was again heard but not seen (in front of the hide), 9 Cormorants were recorded and a Common Buzzard was in the vicinity.  The Wader count was of 7 Blk T Godwits, 35+ Snipe and 132 Lapwings with the Ducks numbering 14 Shoveler, 150 Wigeon and 300+ Teal. PRD/IM/MR.

6th - A very bright, sunny and dry morning - also very cool....... Westerly winds of 15+mph and gusting of up to 19mph.  The weather changed before mid-afternoon, bringing overcast skies and plenty of rain.  The first report in for today was that of a Waxwing* (see Gallery) located as it sat in the bushes beyond the five-bar gate (by sluice cottages) at 09.00hrs.  The trees, bushes and hedgerows this morning, held a Stonechat (briefly in the Dell) whilst around the site were 40+ Blackbirds, 14 Fieldfares, 12 Redwings and 4 Song Thrushes of which respectively, 10, 4, 3 and 2 were in the habitat surrounding the Dell.  A Little Owl was in it's normal tree and from the memorial area, a Woodcock was flushed by dogs.  The Emperor Goose was still with the Greylag Geese on and around the scrape, along with 18 Shoveler, 170 Wigeon and 200+ Teal, while Waders during this survey were singles of Blk T Godwit and Golden Plover, 5 Curlews, 11 Snipe and 146 Lapwings.  There were 6 Turnstones on the sluice. MR.  Further surveying (prior to c13.00hrs) gave the additions of a S E Owl, a Swallow heading S and fly-overs of 2 Lesser Redpolls and a single Siskin.  A Blackcap (fem) was noted, as were 2 Stonechats that were over and above the earlier bird. PRD

7th - Another bright, sunny and dry morning, continuing at least until 13.30hrs, winds slightly variable either side of due West, of moderate strength (up to 19+mph) and gusting a little bit stronger at up to 23mph.  Observations during the morning found the site to be much quieter than yesterday - taking in the area opposite the Approach Road and through to the hide.  A Cetti's Warbler was heard over the road, 2 Redpoll sp. flew over S, a Reed Bunting was viewed from the hide, whilst other counts were of 20+ Goldfinches, 30+ Blackbirds and in three different hedgerow locations were 3 female Blackcaps (1xover Road/1xDipping Pond/1xMemorials).  Just the 'one' Turnstone on the sluice today during the walk to/from the hide.  Birds of Prey viewable from the hide were 2 Common Buzzards, 1 male Marsh Harrier and a Kestrel, while the Waders in the vicinity of the scrape and surrounding grazing marsh totalled 3 Blk T Godwits, 6+ Snipe and 132 Lapwings, all alongside 1 Shelduck, 18 Shoveler, 176 Wigeon and 200+ Teal.  Also viewed from the hide, 4 Skylarks rounded up this report. MR.  Additional species and counts for this morning were from our youngest member (and daddy) on a walk/ride in from the Frinton end of site to the hide.  At the rear of the grazing marsh was a S E Owl, a female Stonechat was located on the edge of the Golf Course, 18 Meadow Pipits and a further 6 Skylarks were along the seawall and a single party of 8 Goldfinches flew S.  A Marsh Harrier and 2 Common Buzzards were possibly the same birds as previously reported. KBr/PBr.   

8th - A dry, bright and fairly pleasant morning turned through the day to become very cool, complete with grey skies at times and a brief spell of drizzle.  By 16.00hrs the winds and gusting (W/WNW) had been up to 23+mph and 28mph respectively.  Forty minutes was spent seawatching this morning but gave only 22 Common Scoters and 17 Brent Geese heading S.  Blackbirds were slightly up again in their numbers at 40+ around the carpark bushes and hedgerows, a single Redwing was seen, while with the exception of a general increase of Greenfinches and Goldfinches in these areas, a Gt. Spotted Woodpecker by the Dipping Pond and singles of Little OwlKestrel and Sparrowhawk were the only other notable birds. The walk past the sluice and through to the Frinton end of site, supplied views of 1 Grey Wagtail, 4 Turnstones near the sluice, 12 Meadow Pipits and 5 Pied Wagtails, 2 Stonechats were on the hedge between the two hides, 50+ Goldfinches flew S overhead and 6 Swallows were also on the move.  2 Green Woodpeckers were seen from the main hide, while the scrape area itself held 1 Snipe, 3 Blk T Godwits, 150 Lapwings, 1 Little Egret, 10 Cormorants, 9 Shoveler, 130+ Teal, 180+ Wigeon and a Greylag GooseMR.

9th - Overcast skies with SSW through SW winds that varied throughout the day from light to strong (speeds up to 26mph) complete with gusting up to 32mph.  The temperature reached a maximum of +10 degrees.  No reports returned.

10th - Whilst generally quite a dull day, the temperature again reached +10+ degrees but with some NW winds the coastline appeared a tad cooler.  Winds were of variable speeds of 6mph through 23+mph and gusting was up to 27mph.  Some on/off drizzle during the day with some heavier rain appearing later.  A ringing session was planned but did not happen due to blustery winds, so a walk to Frinton and back was undertaken.  A pair of Stonechats were by the third turret and a Purple Sandpiper was with 3 Turnstones on the beach.  3 Sparrowhawks and a Kestrel were showy but little else of note.  On the scrape 4 Blk T Godwits, 34 Snipe and a superb adult male Marsh Harrier were the highlights. GG   

11th - Blue skies and bright sun making for a pleasant morning with mostly light to moderate NNW winds of 6mph up to 14+mph along with a few extra blasts of up to 17mph.  The day continued basically in the same manor throughout until dusk.  Observations on and around the site today, saw 2 Purple Sandpipers that were located on the groynes by the Clacton Sailing Club, whilst 3 Turnstones (on the sluice), 3 Blk T Godwits and 5 Snipe were the other Waders of note, with the Duck counts being of 4 Shoveler, 100+ Teal and 150+ Wigeon (including an interesting drake hybrid).  2 Common Buzzards, an adult male Marsh Harrier, 1 Sparrowhawk and a Kestrel were in the vicinity, as was a Kingfisher. AlfM.  Additional reports were of a S E Owl on/over the grazing marsh beyond the pools, 5 Pied Wagtails along the seawall and a pair of Stonechats that were once again close to the Golf Course. KM.  

12th - Initially a beautiful sunrise but this was followed by plenty of cloud cover - a few signs of the sun trying to break through again by 09.20hrs.  A very cold start, the temperature had by this c09.00hrs increased to +8 degrees, wind-chill unfortunately much lower!!  SW winds of light to moderate, speeds up to 14+mph and slightly higher gusting of 16+mph.  Surveying today, included a short time spent seawatching that gave 3 Gt. C Grebes, 11 Shelduck and 16 Common Scoters all flying S, 3 Gannets that flew N, 40 Brent Geese (21S+19N) and 30+ Starlings that flew in/off.  Around the site itself, 4 Lesser Redpolls were seen as they perched on thistles near the memorials, 1 Little Owl and 12 Goldfinches were noted, whilst in small flocks, a further c50 Goldfinches flew over.  The bushes by the Sailing Club Compound gave 1 Reed Bunting and alongside details of 3 House Sparrows, there were c30 Blackbirds around and a single Redwing.  2 Stonechats and a second Reed Bunting were viewable from the hide, as was a female Marsh Harrier.  Across the scrape and grazing marsh were 2 Shelducks, 14 Shoveler, 130 Teal and 166 Wigeon, 9 Brent and 255 Greylag Geese, also 7 Blk T Godwits, 14 Snipe, 50+ Lapwings and heard but not seen, was a Water Rail. MR.  Additional sightings were of 2 Purple Sandpipers located on the rocks in front of the cafe (by Sailing Club). LH.

13th - A bright morning that later turned very cloudy and was complete with winds of a SW direction of speeds up to 10mph.  The temperature was not too bad for the time of year, sitting at +11 degrees for the majority of the duration.  No reports returned.

14th - 'Slightly' misty this morning but was reported as "...but quite pleasant" on site.  The SSW winds varied from barely a breeze to 10mph with gusting occasionally reaching up to 12mph.  Poor visibility across the scrape and it's surrounding area did nothing to assist either the locating or the counting of species today, however 10+ Blk T Godwits were noted and 24 Snipe were seen along the scrape's front edge.  2 Water Rails were on site, one being seen across the road in the "newly cleared ditch" whilst the second bird was heard from the reedbed by the third turret. Between the third turret and the raised Golf Tee (seawall) were 3 Stonechats and noted during the rest of the walk to the Frinton end and back, were 2 Pied Wagtails, 5 Reed Buntings, 20+ Meadow Pipits.  On the beach was a single Turnstone.  With the exception of c25 Blackbirds, 2 Song Thrushes and a Little Owl, the quiet bushes held 3 Goldcrests being one over the road, one by the Dipping Pond and the third by the memorials. MR.  Four additional species for the day were of 1 Common Scoter (fem) that flew close inshore in a NE direction, an adult Med Gull (also off-shore) and fly-overs of 4+ Siskins and a single Lesser RedpollStonechats during this particular survey had increased to a total of 4. PRD.  

15th - Although the sun did appear for a while, the mist was still around and by early afternoon it was once again fairly thick and the viewing on and from the site was limited to say the least!!  A cold day with temperatures mostly holding around +5+ degrees was not helped by the dampness of the mist.  N winds of 6mph through 11mph along with occasional gusting of up to 15mph.  Three observers were on and around the site until lunchtime and gave a combined report of 2 Water Rails showing well across the road, 4 Turnstones on the sluice, a Sparrowhawk sitting on guard in the conifer in a 'surprisingly not' very quiet Dell, while the rest of the trees, bushes and hedgerows on site were not overly busy either - with just 2 of each Goldcrest and Song Thrush located, along with 25+ Blackbirds.  The scrape held 2 drake Tufted Ducks, 6 Snipe and 12 Blk T Godwits of any note, alongside 300+ Greylag Geese and in numbers much as recent days, the Teal, Wigeon and Shovelers. MR/IM/PRD.  

16th - Today's report for a survey from 09.15hrs to 12.30hrs, concluded that it was again a fairly quiet site!  The coastline provided views of a single Red T Diver that was close inshore (also appeared to have a possible damaged foot), 7 Brent Geese that flew N, while on the beach and around the sluice were 7 Turnstones.  A single Siskin was heard as it flew over and 5+ Goldfinches were noted.  Waders on the scrape consisted of 10 Snipe, 14 Blk T Godwits and 21 Curlew, the Ducks were 16+ Shoveler, 105+ Wigeon and 150+ Teal. PRD.    

17th - Mostly a grey, rainy day along with NW winds of variable speeds 6mph through 22+mph and gusting of up to 28+mph. The only notable bird during a brief seawatch (from beside the Clacton Sailing Club) was a Med Gull. AD.

18th - A bright, sunny and mostly glorious day, if a tad chilly at times at c+7 degrees.  NNW winds were light (2mph - 9mph) and gusting was at a moderate 13mph at most.  An early afternoon wander across the site supplied superb views of 2 Waxwings (AD) located in the bushes near the memorials - these birds were joined for a while by 2 Siskin.  While still watching the Waxwings, a S E Owl was seen quartering the hedgerows of the fields beyond. AD/IM/PR/LR.  An additional report, gave 2 Stonechats seen from the hide and from the related time, probably the same S E Owl. KTc

19th - A bit more on the blustery side today with Southerly winds of 17+mph through 21+mph and variable gusting of up to 24+mph.  The coastline temperature sat around the +8 degree mark but the wind-chill factor readings were down at just +4 degrees (locally recorded).  At least three observers surveyed across and from the site during both the morning and some of the afternoon.  The "morning shift" also included the November WeBS count.  Viewed from the hide (scrape and grazing marsh) were totals of 2 Dunlin, 13 Snipe, 18 Blk T Godwits, 26 Curlew, 102 Lapwings, 1 Shelduck, 12 Shoveler, 184 Teal, 165 Wigeon, 250 Greylag and 262 Brent Geese.  We don't report them every day but the common Mallards as they should, always get included in the WeBS count and today there were 22 of them on the scrape area and a further 28 on the Farm Pond.  The Gulls for this WeBS were represented by totals of 1 L B B, 55 Black Headed and 56 Herring.   6 Cormorants were noted along with 7 Moorhens (2 x scrape + 5 x Farm), 2 Grey Herons (marsh) and 3 Mute Swans (2 x scrape + 1 x Farm Pond).  Other counts from the hide, included singles of both Common Buzzard and Kestrel, also that of a Swallow heading N.  The walk from here to the second turret supplied 2 Stonechats in the localised area, 4 Meadow Pipits and on the beach 6 Sanderlings. IM/MR.  The general bushes were again quiet, Blackbird numbers* were still noticeable and the Little Owl was on view.  *NB. 3 Blackbirds by the fivebar gate were seen to be adorning rings.  5 Turnstones were located on the seawall. MR.  The afternoon shift took a turn at seawatching and this lasted for 90 minutes (14.00hrs to 15.30hrs).  Seven species and a sp. flew past the Haven coastline during this time with all barring the 'sp' heading SW. An adult Kittiwake, 8 Brent Geese and a single flock of c60 Knot were recorded, as was a drake R-B Merganser, a flock of 8 Eider (ad drake + 2ximm.drakes + 5x fem.type), a flock of 10 Shelduck and a total of 10 Common Scoters (5+4+1).  The sp, a Guillebill, which by flying close inshore (NE) had snuck under and through the "proverbial radar system". PRD.

20th - Overcast with S through SSE winds of variable speeds 16+mph through 26mph during the morning, along with gusting of up to 30mph.  Afternoon skies remained grey-tinged and the temperature appeared to drop a few degrees from the morning's +10.  Two observers were on site and supplied reports for their sightings which included a Haven 2012 Year List tick.  A two hour seawatch during the afternoon gave them views of only 1 species/2 birds and these were 2 Goldeneye*.  An earlier two hours (08.30-10.30hrs) spent seawatching had supplied a Red T Diver that flew N and 26 Common Scoter and 13 Brent Geese that flew S.  10 Turnstones were on/around the sluice area. MR/IM.  A text message out at 10.53hrs from the Frinton Observatory, had one observer legging it across the greensward to locate 5 Pochards that were heading S past the Haven.  The scrape and it's surrounding area held of note 6 Snipe, 14 Blk T Godwits, 18 Shoveler and today, just 9 Brent GeeseTeal, Wigeon and Greylag Geese much as per yesterday. MR.  Rounding up today's reports were 2 Sanderlings that were seen on the beach near to the second turret. IM.  

21st - A very grey, overcast morning with some drizzle was followed by an afternoon of mixed blue and grey skies and alot more rain.  Initial S through SW winds turned by the evening to WSW and all were of variable speeds up to 22mph and gusting of up to 33mph throughout the day.  Two observers took part in a three hour seawatch, from 08.00hrs to 11.00hrs, noting a single Red T Diver on the sea and a single Gt. C Grebe while all other recorded species were moving South.  A Velvet Scoter, 5 Common Scoters and 9 Teal were on the list, as were 8 Shoveler (and not a single drake among these 8), 32 Brent Geese and finally, 18 probable Knot. MR/IM.   

22nd - A "cool" day in the winds but at least bright and dry throughout.  The strong Southerly winds being of speeds up to 26mph during the daylight hours, complete with gusting of 40+mph.  The after dark winds - well the actual speeds were not clocked for the website tonight but oh boy' were they hustling in off the sea!!  No reports returned.

23rd - SW winds for today and much lighter than those of yesterday.  In fact the whole day was fairly pleasant, cloudy at times and also slightly misty in localised areas but winds of just c10mph for the majority.  No reports returned.

24th - A pretty grim weather front today!!  Not too bad initially just a bit misty again, then the on/off drizzle became rain that then settled in for the rest of the day.  ESE winds by the afternoon of speeds up to 21mph and gusting up to 33mph - with extremely strong gale force winds due in for tonight.  No reports returned.

25th - After a very blustery night and plenty of rainfall, there were very dark skies this morning but by 08.00hrs the sun was breaking through - by 09.00hrs very bright indeed.  Strong 26+mph WSW winds complete with pretty much constant gusting of up to 46mph through the morning, the afternoon seeing SW winds of lighter c15mph speeds.  Still dry and bright as at 14.30hrs.  A stop at the shelter by the Clacton Sailing Club this morning supplied views of 2 Cormorants 'struggling South' and a Diver sp. 'speeding North' - the spray from the tops of the waves, apparently very dramatic.  Along the front were 4 Turnstones, whilst views across the scrape and surrounding areas, supplied 4 Snipe, 14 of each Blk T Godwits and Curlews, 116 Lapwings with the Shoveler, Wigeon and Teal counts reported as 16, 238 and 266 respectively.  The Greylag Geese were at a total of 272.  Singles of Kestrel and Little Owl were also on/over the site. MR.   

26th - Following a night of heavy constant rain, daybreak saw a continuation of the wet stuff but the rain had at least eased slightly by 07.00hrs.  On/off rain remained in play through to at least mid-day, finally leaving the afternoon to be dry and mostly bright.  The initial SSE winds of up to 19mph along with gusting of up to 29mph had dropped in strength by the evening to c10mph and wind direction turned to NW.  Morning observations included a seawatch from 08.30hrs to 11.30hrs that gave 1 Velvet Scoter, 164 Common Scoters, 2 R-B Mergansers and 5 Cormorants heading S, while Brent Geese and Red Throated Divers were flying both ways (1 of each heading N and 1 of each S) and a further 3 Red Throated Divers were sat upon the sea.  During this time, 6 Turnstones were seen on the beach and 5 Purple Sandpipers were located on the sea wall opposite the second hide. MR/PRD.  A return visit during the afternoon, specifically to the hide, found that the water levels were - as to be expected from all the rain - very high and there was no edge at all along what 'would normally be' the rear of the scrape.  25 Waders were noted, these being 10 Blk T Godwits and 15 Snipe.  The various Ducks and Greylag Geese were found to be spread all over the area.  Singles of Common Buzzard and Barn Owl were in this vicinity. MR

27th - Another one of those "hit 'n' miss" weather days today - on/off drizzle mingled with brighter skies and some sun through the morning and on into the early afternoon.  The rain got heavier for mid-afternoon and became at times torrential.  The latter conditions continued into the evening.  Winds were of NW through N with speeds up to 19+mph and gusting of 35+mph.  Surveying around the trees, bushes and hedgerows today, saw that a few more of both Blackbirds and Chaffinches were around, along with 2 Song Thrushes, 1 Kestrel and 1 Little Owl of note.  Located on the sluice were 4 Turnstones, whilst the Waders on and around the flooded scrape area, totalled 6 Blk T Godwits, 36 Snipe and 90 Lapwings.  2 Shelduck were amongst the Shoveler, Teal and Wigeon - the latter three species being in similar numbers to those of recent days.  The count for Greylag Geese during these observations was 196. MR.

28th - The promised weather for today was of "dry but much colder".  It was still dry by mid-morning and definitely colder with the temperature sitting around +6 degrees.  Very bright and sunny from daybreak to circa mid-morning when cloud cover moved in and so did the on/off drizzle/rain.  Morning NNW winds of 11mph increased to c14mph and occasional gusting was up to 25mph during the afternoon.  Morning observations included two brief seawatching sessions that provided a Woodcock that flew in/off and then dropped in behind the mounds, whilst 3 Red Throated Divers headed N up the coast, as did 13 Brent Geese and Southerly movement included 5 Shelduck, 15 Teal, 26 Common Scoter and 4 Brent Geese.  A visit to the hide saw 1 Little Grebe in front of the structure, a Water Rail was heard and Waders in the vicinity were 7 Blk T Godwits, 12 Snipe and 112 Lapwings.  A full Duck count today gave 4 Shelducks, 18 Shoveler, 272 Wigeon and 334 Teal, while the Greylag and Brent Geese numbered 218 and 100+ respectively (most of the Brents leaving after a 'wash & brush up'). MR.   

29th - An even colder start this morning at around +3 degrees and only at +5 degrees by mid-morning.  Dry conditions though - along with NW winds of up to 14mph and occasional gusting of up to 26mph.  One observer noted off-shore movement from 08.30hrs to 09.00hrs as 1 Gt. C. Grebe heading N, 2 Brent Geese also flying N, while a further 2 Brent Geese went S, as did 5 Common Scoters.  At this time c250 Wigeon were sat across the sea in small flocks.  Around the bushes and hedgerows were c25 Blackbirds, 3 Goldfinches, a small L-T Tit flock and 2 Little Owls (one being nearer to Tariq than normal, the second on the scrape's rear hedge viewable from the hide), while a single Fieldfare was located on the mounds and between the two hides, there were 2 StonechatsAlot of Gulls were on and around the pools - that also held 3 of each Turnstones and Blk T Godwits.  A further 5 Blk T Godwits were alongside 6 Snipe, 100+ Lapwings, 12 Shoveler, c300 Wigeon, c300 Teal and 200+ Greylag Geese on and around the scrape and it's surrounding area.  Whilst viewing from the hide, both a male Marsh Harrier and a Sparrowhawk were seen and appearing from over the hide, circling the marsh and then disappearing out over the seawall in a Northerly direction, were 4 Barnacle Geese*. On the brook near to the wind pump was a Little Grebe. MR.  A second seawatching session from 11.00hrs to 14.00hrs (two observers) proved to be a fairly good one consisting of eleven species including the second 'Haven Year List Tick' of the day.  The species were as follows: small flocks of Starlings in/off throughout the three hours, 1 Guillemot (N), 15 Dunlin (N), 6 Red Throated Divers (2N+4S), 54 Brent Geese (30N+24S), 2 fem Goldeneye (N), 4 Gadwall (N but stopped en route to join the Wigeon that were already on the sea), 7 Eider including 5 drakes (N but these too decided to take a breather from their flight path and rested on the sea), 7 Common Scoters (5xS+2 on sea), 11 Shelducks (N) and rounding up the report were 3 Bewick's Swans (2ad+1juv) that were flying N before they decided to check out the Haven scrape (see Gallery). MR/PRD

30th - And we all woke up to find plenty of ice covering the vehicles and the hedgerows a frosty white too!  Dawn saw some superb colours across the clouds and the day continued to be fairly bright and extremely sunny at times.  The temperature did eventually reach a high of nearly +4 degrees but soon started to drop again early afternoon.  WNW winds varied in speed to c9mph.  Just one species reported for today - that of a female Bullfinch that was located 'hide side' of the Sewage Farm. PRD.     

As at 30th November, the Haven 2012 Year List stands at 179.

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