9th March 2015 – Firecrests and Chiffchaffs


Firecrest at Belle Tout today.

A very grey day with a cold westerly wind. I checked a few local sites in the hope of turning up an early migrant but both Arlington reservoir and the Cuckmere held nothing. There were some large Gull flocks in the lower Cuckmere but I could find nothing of interest other than 3 Mediterranean Gull. Also 2 Dark-bellied Brent Geese and a single White-front were amongst the feral Canada Geese there. It wasn’t until I got to Beachy Head that I came across the first sign of an avian spring in the form of at least 2 Firecrest and a Chiffchaff in Belle Tout. That’s the first Chiffchaff I’ve seen on the headland since early November ’14 and surely a migrant. The beautiful Exmoor’s are still grazing the slope beneath the lighthouse, they’re sure to be moved on soon as winter comes to an end. IMG_1271 It had become a silly obsession to get the Jevington Rough-legged Buzzard “on the bike list” whilst cycling the road between Jevington and Friston Pond. Having failed on every occasion, I was pleased to see it soaring and hovering against a crystalline cyan sky yesterday, 8th March. No other observers or optics detracting from the show as I passed beneath it.


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