Monday, 25 July 2016

25th July, 2016 Beachy Head and the Cuckmere Sunny becoming warm W 1 increasing to 3

Another nice early morning to be birding with far fewer day- visitors on Beachy Head. We birded the Birling lane and scrub opposite, Shooters Bottom, Old Trapping Area and Hotel Garden. Another very quiet morning with the highlight being a fine plumage Red Kite which passed almost directly over me. This immediately brought back memories of our first ever Red Kite seen on the Beachy Head and watched with great excitement by Roger and Liz Charlwood and myself on the 29th September 1970 and this before the re-introduction programme had started and when Red Kite was then a scarce Sussex bird.

Butterflies highlights included a single Painted Lady and a fine male Small Blue which was present in the Old Trapping Area which may possibly be a new site for the Small blue butterfly.

Red Kite 1 Juv W over Birling @ 07.40
Sparrowhawk 1
Kestrel 1
Curlew 2 E
Sedge Warbler 3
Lesser Whitethroat 1 Shooters Bottom
Common Whitethroat 11
Willow Warbler 1
Raven 1

Juvenile Red Kite over Birling


 Sedge Warbler at Birling

Willow Warbler in Shooters Bottom-the only one we saw today.

Male Chalk Hill Blue

Painted Lady in Shooters Bottom

Male Small Blue in the Old Trapping Area

We had received a text from Matt to inform us that he had just found a Cattle Egret on the western side of the lower Cuckmere. On our way home we stopped off but unfortunately the Cattle Egret had already departed. We walked down the western side and then back along the river at low tide and saw in the region of 20+ Little Egrets and 5 Dunlin which gave me the opportunity to photograph these. (Many thanks for the text Matt).

Looking across to Birling and Belle Tout from the Cuckmere

Adult Dunlin still in summer plumage-An under-rated bird when you
don't see too many of them

Dunlin - appears to be a juvenile moulting into 1stW plumage.
(Thanks to George Heath and David Cooper for their comments
on this plumage).

A flyby Spitfire