So, do you want to know what we were up to today out on the marsh that caused so much disturbance? With breeding season approaching fast we realised that a sneaky Fox had somehow got into the huge fenced off area that is Aveley Marsh. Not much good having an electric fence to keep the foxes outside when one is on the inside so today we mustered the troops and called in all the volunteers and some folks from DEFRA who happened to offer themselves for work party duties, to assist in the a co-ordinated sweep to 'encourage' him to leave the zone!
It almost worked and he was seen but despite our best efforts he managed to elude the line and dived down a hole that we had not previously found and there he stayed. At least we know where he lives now! Round two to commence very soon....
Just how the team survived the driving cold and howling wind today I do not know... I would be telling porkies if I said that I was out there with them... it certainly looked cold!
On the bird front the 350 Golden Plover were still wheeling around and a record breaking flock of 50 Ruff touched down on the Target Pools (wish I had connected with those!). Snipe were whizzing around and two Avocets were in the Bay.
Highlight for me (and many others) was the sight of a monster, buzzard-sized white(ish) Gyr-type Falcon that careened along the river wall this morning before scaring the living doh-dahs out of every avian organism on the marsh. It was hoooogge! It was off east and onto a pylon in seconds looking for all the world like a proper Gyr. We suspect that it may have a little bit of something else in there such as Saker as it had a fawny buff cast to the upperparts but it was so quick that we would love to have seen it better to make sure.... It certainly had no jesses dangling
Hopefully we will get another chance to see this awesome hunter again.
Afternoon all... just a quick note to say that due to some essential reserve-wide work on Friday 22 March I have cancelled the Beginners Birdwatch Walk as there will be serious disturbance throughout the day to the whole of Aveley Marsh within the fenceline. Sorry for any inconvenience caused.
The seem to be getting on quite well at the west end with quite probably two pairs of Black Redstart flitting between the foreshore and enclosed wasteland. And there were obviously more than one Sea Slater down there as another one has clearly bitten the dust! And as for the Wheatear! Still have not seen one down there! I am probably just being a bit of a tart and not staying out long enough in the freezing conditions!