Black Redstarts & Sand Martins 22.3.19

Relatively calm low cloud base, a light W wind.

5T6A3907 2

A fine male Black Redstart in Shooters.

I visited Shooters Bottom, Belle Tout and Birling Gap with only meager pickings to be had.

Shooters held 2/3 Black Redstart, 2 Firecrest, 1 Goldcrest, 4 Chiffchaff. Belle Tout wood I found to be quiet with just singles each of Firecrest and Chiffchaff, although a Tawny Owl called briefly around 10am. The loop around Birling produced nothing beyond a single Chiffchaff, 3 Robins, 4 Dunnock. A total of 12 Stonechat over the whole visit and c50 Meadow Pipit passed overhead with c10 on the ground seen. The Merlin was seen again (JFC)

An afternoon visit to West Rise finally provided some hirundines! A small group of Sand Martin fed high above the lake and carpark throughout an hours visit. Nice to see and even nicer to hear them. There were also 4 Wheatear in the same area as yesterday.


One of 21 Sand Martin at West Rise, my first of the year.


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