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" changed for several species in 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).
Site Year Tick*
1st - The first few hours on site this morning proved fruitful for a few observers with sightings of a Pomarine Skua* flying S at 08.10hrs (IM), followed by a Great White Egret* (TS) at 10.44hrs on the grazing marsh as viewed from the main hide and also a fly-over/through of 4 Pink-footed Geese*. The GWE had flown over the site towards Frinton before it changed direction and returned to the grazing marsh, where it was observed until 11.50hrs when it took flight N once more towards and over Frinton and was lost to view. These three species were all HHB 2015 Year List ticks, taking the current year to 167 species seen on/from the site. TS/IM/PRD/PBr/MR.
2nd - Of particular note today, a Yellow-Browed Warbler was seen to be in the area beyond the Dipping Pond (the pond in lower carpark near barrier) just prior to 08.30hrs and as at c13.30hrs the Y-BW was still visible on/off and calling - its latter timed location then being to the right of this Pond. IM.
3rd - At least two observers and two members of the ringing team were on site today, for which the latter birders reported a Kingfisher, a Firecrest, 2 Cetti's Warblers, 3 Chiffchaffs and 4 Goldcrests amongst others. PNt/LW. On, around and over the site a single Yellow Wagtail was in with the Pied Wagtails on the Greensward, 1 Great Spotted and 3 Green Woodpeckers were noted, as were 4 Swallows, while the viewing (from the Raised Platform by Memorials) of a flock of Goldfinches on/in the thistles, proved fun. Some 4 Blackcaps, 10+ Chiffchaffs and 15+ Goldcrests may have included a few of the birds seen by the ringing team. Viewing from the main hide across the reedbeds, scrape and grazing marsh provided a Kingfisher (+/- the earlier bird), a Common Gull (1w), 1 Snipe, 2 Curlew, 9 Ruff and c80 Lapwings, 5 Shoveler, 57 Wigeon, c100 Teal and 140 Greylag Geese. A White-fronted Goose (IM) was seen to drop in to the rear of the scrape at c12.25hrs. Birds of Prey at this time were a single Sparrowhawk, 2 Kestrels and 3 Common Buzzards. IM/MR.
4th - During a ringing session and on-going observations from 06.30-10.30hrs there proved to be a fair selection of species on/over the site this morning with the former including Goldcrest, Stonechat and Cetti's Warbler, while general surveying included 2 more Stonechats, 35 Linnets, 10 Swallows, singles of both Barn and S E Owl's and 2 Green Woodpeckers. Heard during this four hour duration were also a second Cetti's Warbler, a Ringed Plover and a Water Rail. SC. Located at c08.40hrs was a Yellow-Browed Warbler - this bird was once again at the rear of the Dipping Pond (bottom of lower carpark). IM.
5th - A short session of seawatching began today's visits but after an hour, the only birds of note had been 75 Brent Geese all flying S. IM/MR. Observing from the main hide - for a while - supplied better viewing than across the sea...... until 'grass cutting' put paid to that too! It does all have to be cut at some stage. The report included counts of 1 Hobby, 1 Peregrine, 1 Common Buzzard and 2 Kestrels on and/or over the arable fields, 16 Swallows heading S, 2 Grey Herons in the vicinity and across the scrape and grazing marsh, totals of 6 Cormorants, 8 Ruff and 8 Blk T Godwits, 34 Wigeon, c50 Teal and c100 Greylag Geese. MR.
6th - No reports returned.
7th - Several observers were on site during the day with reports covering both generally around and from the site, across the scrape areas from the main hide and also over-head passage. Surveying from 09.00-13.00hrs provided counts of 1 S E O (over the grazing fields), a Sparrowhawk (ad male), a Common Buzzard, 2 Marsh Harriers - the latter being an adult female and the second bird, a juvenile male that was seen flying S out to sea, also 2 Med Gulls (adults) that were viewed offshore. A single Ruff, 3 Snipe and 11 Blk T Godwits were observed, as were a Kingfisher, 1 Cetti's Warbler, 1 Wheatear, 1 Grey Wagtail and 9 Song Thrush. Southerly passage included 2 House Martins, 15 Swallows, 17 Siskin and 130 Goldfinches, while of 29 Lesser Redpolls, two were feeding on thistles near to the scrape and the rest were in small numbers moving S. SG. Over and above the previous report, additions were of 2 Blackcaps, 6+ Chiffchaff and 8+ Goldcrests, while there was a notable increase to the number of Blackbirds on and around the site. Across the scrape and surrounding marsh were also some 94 Lapwings, 5 Shoveler, 60 Wigeon, 140 Teal and 145 Greylag Geese, with the wander back to the Sluice area yielding further additions to the day's species of 2 Purple Sandpipers and 3 Turnstones. TS/IM/MR. Both the scrape and the Sluice Rocks held individual colour-ringed Herring Gulls - both bearing rings associated with Suffolk areas. MR.
8th - No reports returned.
9th - Generally a sunny day which saw on-site ringing sessions from 06.30hrs to around mid-day. The report for these sessions and for site observations during this period included singles of Kingfisher, Goldcrest, Chiffchaff, Blackcap and Cetti's Warbler, also Swallow, Barn Owl and S E O, 2 Little Grebes, at least 20 Reed Buntings in one area, 25 Linnets and some 90 Goldfinches. SC. On the Wildlife side, there was a notable variety that included Clouded Yellow (Mounds area. JMc), Speckled Wood, Small Copper and 3 Small White Butterflies, as well as both Common Darter and Migrant Hawker Dragonflies. SC. A visit to the Farm this afternoon (on public footpath areas within HHB boundaries) yielded 2 Chiffchaffs in the Willows by the Farm Pond, a Kestrel was on show and at one point, 3 Sparrowhawks were soaring above this same vicinity all together. A Barn Owl atop a fence by the Golf Course, may or may not have been the earlier bird of this morning. Distant viewing from the Farm - looking towards the turbines off of St. John's Road/Bockings Elm - also gave the observer (at one time) sight of 10 Common Buzzards over the fields. IM.
10th - Surveying around the main parts of the site today proved that there was very little bird-life around the trees, bushes and hedgerows, while a few Stonechats were seen further in on the site. Of particular note on the Wildlife front there were however, some Mining Bees that were located in the Dell area. Viewing from the main hide found that across the scrape and surrounding area, it was much as per recent days with the exceptions of a single Redshank and also a Pintail. MR. During a morning ringing session 06.30-12.00hrs (undertaken in a non-public area), general sightings included a count of 3 Stonechats (+/- previous birds), 3 Ruff (with Lapwings in the field below Manor Farm) and also a Barn Owl. Other species during this period included Dartford Warbler*, Cetti's Warbler, 2 Chiffchaffs and 5 Goldcrests. SC/LW.
11th - Three observers began their surveys this morning with a joint seawatch session from 08.45 to 10.30hrs, adding a 2015 Haven Year Tick in the process - this being when 2 Eider* flew S. Likewise heading S were also 16 Wigeon and 290 Brent Geese, while the noted species heading N were singles of Med Gull and Gannet and a further 12 Brent Geese. A Black Redstart was albeit briefly (c10.00hrs), seen initially on the path before it went to the fence by the Sailing Club (club house above the Dell), then dropped over the Tamarisk and was lost to view. Present on the Greensward were 3 White Wagtails. PL/PNs/MR. In very windy conditions across the site, the trees, bushes and hedgerows yielded just a couple of Goldcrests and Chiffchaffs of particular interest. The scrape failed to give any surprises and in fact there was 'only' one Wader, this was a Blk T Godwit. While nothing ultra-special amongst the good number of Gulls on the scrape, these held more interest with counts of 2 G B B, at least 4 Common Gulls and 12 Med Gulls. Black-headed, Herring and L B B Gulls were all in the area and both the Ducks and the Geese in this vicinity, were again, much as in recent days. PNs/MR.
12th - No reports returned.
13th - Of particular interest on the site today, a total of 22 Goldcrests were among the species during a Ringing Session from 06.45-12.00hrs. A single Chiffchaff was also in the area near to the Sewage Farm. SC. Seen on the scrape was a Yellow-Legged Gull. PRD/MR. Observations from 15.30hrs to 16.30hrs yielded singles of Kestrel, Sparrowhawk and Common Buzzard and also 2 Peregrines (male+fem). Other counts included 1 Little Egret, 1 Grey Heron, 3 Blk T Godwits, 8 Cormorants, 74 Teal, 92 Wigeon, 5 Brent and c200 Greylag Geese, while 5 Red-legged Partridges also made the notebook. LH.
14th - The start of today's visit looked quite promising with 10+ Goldcrests and alot of Blue Tits in the Dell but these drifted away and then it went a bit downhill for the rest of the trees, bushes and hedgerows throughout the site! Further observations included just 1 Song Thrush and c12 Blackbirds, singles of Cetti's Warbler (heard from the raised Platform), Blackcap and Reed Bunting and also 2 Chiffchaff. From the path near the wind pump (near main hide), a Water Rail was visible on the right hand side of the scrape. The viewing across the scrape and surrounding grazing marsh - from the main hide - supplied 1 Gadwall (drake), 6 Shoveler, c50 Teal, 66 Wigeon and c80 Greylag Geese, along with 1 Little Egret, 2 Grey Herons, 1 Snipe, 6 Ruff, 12 Blk T Godwits and c80 Lapwings. Just 2 Kestrels were the Birds of Prey at this survey. Of note, a returning (ntgg) colour-ringed Herring Gull was also seen on the scrape, while another colour-ringed Herring Gull (Sluice) was bearing a 'Suffolk' ring. MR.
15th - A Firecrest was among the species noted today when it was located in the bushes beyond the Memorials at 12.00hrs. Also around the trees and bushes were some 5 Goldcrests, 9+ Song Thrush and 12+ Blackbirds, while along the seawall, the observer was treated to views of a single Purple Sandpiper with 2 Turnstones. MR.
16th - On/off rain for today and per yesterday, some very grey skies indeed! While viewing from the main hide at c10.00hrs, a S E O was quartering the grazing marsh, having appeared as soon as the earlier rain had stopped. The scrape and surrounding areas, including the reedbeds and localised bushes yielded 5 Snipe, 8 Curlew, 16 Blk T Godwits and 28 Lapwings, 2 Shoveler, 50+ Wigeon, 107 Teal and 20 Greylag Geese, along with a Med Gull (2W), 4 Common Gulls, 31 Herring and 60 Black-headed Gulls. As well as the S E O, there was a single Sparrowhawk and 2 Kestrels, 1 Kingfisher, 1 Chiffchaff and 1 Cetti's Warbler (heard only), 2 Stonechats, 4 Song Thrush and 8 Blackbirds in the vicinity. The wander back from the main hide gave of note, a returning 'Suffolk' colour-ringed Herring Gull as well as 3 Turnstones on the Sluice, while 4 Goldcrests were in the bushes above the Memorials. The Wildlife front got a look-in today too - with both a Red Fox and a Brown Hare seen from the main hide. MR. An afternoon visit in the continued gloomy conditions, provided of note, a juvenile Gannet heading S (12.24hrs), an adult Med Gull that was off-shore with Black-headed Gulls near the outflow and a Sparrowhawk was along the Approach Road, as were 2 Jays. The tamarisk behind the beach huts held a single Chiffchaff and at this time there were also at least 20 Goldcrests here, possibly more. GB.
17th - No reports returned.
18th - A wander around the site today provided a selection of Birds of Prey with singles of Kestrel, Sparrowhawk, Peregrine, Marsh Harrier and Common Buzzard, also a Hen Harrier* during late morning, seen as it was mobbed while flying beyond the scrape. S E O's at this time numbered 2 in the vicinity. As viewed from the first turret, there were of further note, 5 Ruff on the scrape and 3 Stonechats in/on the bushes. 'Many' Goldcrests were noted across the site today but two of them landing on the turret 'within touching range' was an unexpected surprise, as were views of a Coal Tit* in the feeding station. IM.
19th - A few observers were on site this morning and a five-hour ringing session also took place. Initially, the bushes and hedgerows were fairly quiet with just a few Goldcrests and 2 of each Chiffchaff and Redwing of particular note. MR/IM/PRD. The main hide provided 2 Redshanks, 3 Snipe, 20 Blk T Godwits and 120 Lapwings, a Shoveler, 40+ Wigeon, 68 Teal and 100+ Greylag Geese, while singles of Peregrine and Kestrel were in the vicinity. MR. The walk to the second turret yielded a Reed Bunting, 2 Stonechats, 6 Meadow Pipits and 6 Pied Wagtails, while fly-overs included 1 Siskin, 4 Lesser Redpolls, 5 Tree Sparrows*, some 19 Swallows and a number of each Goldfinch, Greenfinch and Chaffinch. PRD/MR. The continued walk to the Frinton end, added 2 Wheatears and 2 S E O's to the list (PRD), while the return walk to the Sluice at this time (MR) added a Goldcrest that came in/off and for the Sluice area, 1 Rock Pipit, 1 Purple Sandpiper and 3 Turnstones. PRD/MR. Further sightings from during the ringing session were of a Cetti's Warbler (singing near reedbeds towards the other end of the site), 1 Barn Owl, 1 Swallow and 35+ Goldfinches, while 2 S E O's may or may not have been the same as the previous reported two birds. SC.
20th - The star bird of today proved to be that of a Rough-Legged Buzzard* (juv) that was located by Pete Davis at 11.10hrs. The RLB was perched near to the wooden hide at this time and continued to show on and around the site throughout the rest of the day, giving the most superb views for the many observers who arrived to see it. Not the first RLB to be recorded at/over the Haven (first being in October 1974), the majority have been autumn records. The last RLB was recorded exactly one year ago on 20th October 2014 and the first of the 2010 RLB reports was also 20th October. PRD/MR/PBr/SC/PR/LR/et al. During a quick jog from Frinton Obs to the Haven for better views of the RLB, a Great Grey Shrike* was flushed from 'Frinton under-cliffs' and in view of the observer, it flew to the Golf Course and subsequently within the Haven boundary, before re-locating itself to the 'RBS' hawthorn bush (Haven side of the beach huts). After a few minutes of the GG Shrike being atop this hawthorn, the bird unfortunately flew further onto the Golf Course and was lost to view. PBr. Surveying during a wander down to the seawall from the Farm this morning, yielded counts of 1 Brambling, 2 Goldcrests, 2 Song Thrush, 4 Lesser Redpolls, 5 Skylarks and 2 Sparrowhawks, also 1 Cetti's Warbler (Golf Course), 2 Stonechats and 2 Reed Buntings - the latter two species both by the Golf Course Dump. MR. Initially seen at distance over the marsh during the wander down (MR), a Ringtail Hen Harrier gave great views as seen from the then seawall position of several observers, as did a 'stunning' S E O that was one of 2 S E O's in the vicinity. Also noted at this time were a single Wheatear, 2 Stonechats (+/- earlier birds), 3 Common Buzzards and at least 20 Swallows. MR/PRD/IM/PBr/et.al. A WEBS count was carried out this morning and provided totals of 1 Kingfisher, 2 Grey Herons, 6 Cormorants, 9 Moorhens, 5 Curlew, 6 Snipe, 25 Blk T Godwits and 160 Lapwings, along with 2 Shoveler, 8 Mallards, 40 Teal, 62 Wigeon and 170 Greylag Geese. SC. All round, it was definitely a good day for birding at the Haven!
21st - At 11.18hrs this morning, the good news was that the juvenile Rough-Legged Buzzard was still on site and that as soon as the rain had eased, the bird was showing very well and then by 12.00hrs, it was perched in the hedge situated to the left of the hide. MR. Viewing from 13.15-14.35hrs saw the RLB over the scrape and behind the main hide. A Sparrowhawk flew low over the ground by the second hide, while a Fieldfare was a fly-over, an adult Med Gull was seen over the scrape and of note, the scrape held 8 Teal, 10 Blk T Godwits and 12 Lapwings. At least 4 Stonechats were located during this visit. BS. Early evening (17.00-18.30hrs) and the star bird 'RLB' was still showing - perched atop a post in front of the hide. At this time, there were also 1 Barn and 2 S E Owls in the area, as was a Water Rail. DS.
22nd - Another Haven Year Tick made the list at 09.05hrs today when a Lapland Bunting* was located by the Sailing Club (club above the Dell) before it flew inland and was lost to view. The Rough-Legged Buzzard remained on site and as at c13.00hrs it was "showing ridiculously well from the hide". PRD. On and around the site during the day, the combined reports from various observers, also included 1 Kingfisher (flew in front of the hide), 1 Swallow, 1 Common Buzzard, 2 Kestrels and 5 Stonechats, 1 Oystercatcher, 1 Purple Sandpiper, 4 Turnstones, 19 Blk T Godwits, 166 Lapwings and 61 Teal. PRD/MR/IM/SF/PT/RWf/DD-L.
23rd - At 08.40hrs, it was confirmed that the Rough-Legged Buzzard (juv) was now into the fourth day of its Haven visit - both prey and area obviously suiting the RLB quite well. MR. Observations from 09.45-11.45hrs on this grey and misty morning, included along with the RLB, 3 S E O's, 1 Fieldfare, fly-overs of 3 Redpoll sp., fly-overs of 5 Siskin and also 6 Swallows. SN.
24th - The Rough-Legged Buzzard was reported at c08.50hrs as being atop the fence on the right-hand side of the main hide, then by 11.48hrs, the bird was showing very well while perched on the sheltered side of the bushes that border the grazing marsh, just onto the Golf Course. The RLB continued to remain through the afternoon and into the early evening. At least 2 S E O's were also in the vicinity. IM/PBr/MRsl/DS. During three trips in/out and through the site from each end at various times up to 13.45hrs, additional species included 2 Rock Pipits, 3 Purple Sandpipers and 6 Turnstones around the Sluice and a Grey Wagtail was located by the Radar Mast. PBr&co. Seen on the rocks during the evening, a single Purple Sandpiper may or may not have been one of the earlier birds. DS.
25th - BST ended during the early hours of this morning and the clocks went back by one hour. The Haven site, per the last few days, once again saw many observers and photographers visiting throughout the whole day to view the juvenile Rough-Legged Buzzard that chose to re-appear at c08.25hrs this morning - at the Golf Course end of the site. Other species and counts noted between 06.00hrs up to at least 11.30hrs (various reports) were of 1 Common Buzzard, 1 Peregrine, 5 Kestrels and 4 S E O's, a Yellow-Legged Gull(SC), 1 Barnacle Goose*(SC), 1 Grey Wagtail, 1 Rock Pipit, 36+ Meadow Pipits, 2 Stonechats (1pr), 10 Brambling (by Radar Tower), 10 Siskin, at least 10 of each Chaffinch and Greenfinch, 15 Goldfinches, 15 Reed Buntings and 2 Swallows. A count of 3 Purple Sandpipers were reported (possibly the same 3 juvenile birds seen later - early afternoon (KM) - on the Sluice and Rocks before they flew S), while 13 Turnstones were seen along the beach. Between the Sluice and the second hide, 2 Bearded Tits were reported (heard only.Vtr), while Goldcrests (6) were again an included species during a ringing session (SC), as were 2 Lesser Redpolls and 5 Reed Buntings amongst others. SC/KK/KM/et.al. Observations from mid-afternoon to dusk included a Snow Bunting(LH) and 2 Cetti's Warblers(LH) along the Golf Course/seawall towards the Frinton end of the site. Proving a definite increase to the morning birds and showing extremely well over the grazing marsh areas - below the first turret and through to, across and beyond the Golf Course were 7+ S E O's. While the RLB was a superb bird to watch (also showing very well when it 'finally' decided to evacuate from its afternoon perch from a Golf Course bush), the S E Owls were duly paid much attention by the many observers. Flying N offshore at dusk were 2 Turnstones. A Common Seal (PNs) was a noted afternoon Wildlife report. PNs/LH/DS/KA/AD/et.al.
26th - A site survey this morning located 3 Black Redstarts at 08.30hrs by the Sailing Club Compound (compound before the carpark/barriers) and slightly later, also confirmed that the Rough-legged Buzzard was still on site. The RLB has now been on and around the site for seven days and while it has at times been content to sit frustratingly 'out of proper sight or at some distance' this bird has overall, provided for many, some absolutely fantastic viewing and subsequently some superb photos too. The RLB was seen to land on the seawall today, somewhat close to a gent walking that same stretch. (see photo). MR. A family cycle ride during late afternoon provided a Goldcrest along the seawall, a male Black Restart on the rocks below the seawall (between the raised Golf Tee and the third turret) and 3 Stonechats along the edge of the Golf Course as well as another good count of S E O's with 5+ of these across the grazing marsh. PBr&co.
27th - Several observers were on site again today with initial reports being that the Rough-Legged Buzzard was still viewable (day eight) as at c08.10hrs (and continued to be seen throughout the day), a Black Redstart was on the second turret at 09.12hrs (probably the same bird also seen late afternoon), a Snow Bunting was showing well prior to mid-day - Haven side of the beach huts (also seen late afternoon flying from the Golf Course practice green back to the seawall), the UK Coal Tit was again seen on the feeders (before noon) and a Firecrest was in the sycamore within the back garden of Sluice Cottages. Noted additions during the day were of 1 Rock Pipit (beach at Frinton end of site), 1 Stonechat (male), 10 Reed Buntings, 1 Water Rail (heard), 1 Turnstone, 8 Brent Geese (offshore late afternoon) and 3+ S E O's. Viewable from both the main road lay-by and from the first turret (13.17hrs), a single Barnacle Goose was amongst Greylag Geese in the field. PRD/IM/LH/PBr/PC/et.al.
28th - In mostly wet and very overcast conditions, the Rough-Legged Buzzard was still on site this morning as at 11.30hrs but had not been visible from the main hide during the survey of the scrape, surrounding grazing marsh or skyline. A walk in the rain to the third turret was undertaken and upon reaching the Golf Course, the RLB was picked up in flight while it was being mobbed by 2 Crows along the rear of the Golf Course, after which, the RLB proceeded to land atop the fence near the third Owl Box. The return wander back to the Sewage Farm provided views (just after mid-day) of a cracking male Black Redstart on top of the second hide and once again, on the feeders in the Feeding Station, there was a UK Coal Tit. The earlier survey of the scrape, found that there was little difference in counts to recent days - with just a Dunlin being an addition to the 6 Snipe and 12 Blk T Godwits, 6 Gadwall the additions joining the Teal and Wigeon, while the Barnacle Goose was still amongst the Greylag Geese. A total of 3 S E O's were across the marsh at this time. MR. Per an RBA pager message, a Snow Bunting was also on site again today. Vtr.
29th - The Rough-Legged Buzzard was reported on pager services as still on the Haven site as at 09.12hrs. RBA.
30th - Now on 'Day Eleven' of its stay at the Haven, the Rough-Legged Buzzard was said to be looking good in the rain as at 09.37hrs - the observer however, was happier sitting in the hide trying to stay dry! Surveying across the scrape and surrounding grazing marsh yielded counts of 1 Little Egret, 2 Grey Herons, 2 Blk T Godwits and 60 Lapwings, 2 Shoveler, 120 Wigeon and 160 Teal, 1 Barnacle, 8 Brent and 152 Greylag Geese, as well as 1 Common, 2 L B B, 3 G B B, 42 Black-headed and 104 Herring Gulls. Viewing from the main hide also provided 2 Stonechats, 1 Barn Owl, 1 S E O, 1 Kestrel, 1 Sparrowhawk and 2 Common Buzzards. Additions were of 1 Purple Sandpiper and 3 Turnstones that were located along the front. MR.
31st - Of particular note, the Rough-Legged Buzzard was still on site today, while mid-afternoon yielded - for a few observers - a juvenile/1W Red-Backed Shrike* in/over an area of the Golf Course/edge of. The R-B Shrike unfortunately proved thereafter to be an elusive bird and whilst it was "briefly re-located by the Golf Course Dump, it then flew onto scrub on the Golf Course and presumed to roost as no further sign (PBr)". (Photos available on both Birdguides & RBA). CU/IP/PS/PBr. A ringing session was also held today and amongst the counts and species for this were some 7 Goldcrests. PNt.
As at 31st October 2015 the Haven 2015 Year List stands at: 177.
ALL photos remain the copyright of the photographer and/or the particular websites or publications they may appear within. From top of page downwards, the photos are by: Mick Rodwell 1,3,4,5,6,8. Simon Cox 2. Paul Chamberlain 7.