Trip reports

Sevenoaks KWT (Leader Sue Carter & Steve Goodrich)

Sevenoaks KWT (Leader Sue Carter & Steve Goodrich)
Orange-tip (Steve Goodrich)

Monday, 17 April 2017

On the way we were serenaded by newly arrived blackcaps and chiffchaffs and some of us saw a mistle thrush carrying food. On checking the lake we could see a couple of distant little-ringed plovers and a pair of Egyptian geese with their brood of five goslings and hirundines hawking overhead. Two ring-necked parakeets flew by squawking loudly to betray their presence.

Once we were all settled in the hide we saw a reed bunting and then heard a reed warbler singing from deep in the reed mace. Eventually, with perseverance, everyone managed to catch a glimpse as it climbed up the stems. We also saw a wren, a long-tailed tit and a kingfisher which shot bullet-like past the hide and perched for a while in a nearby bush. Later three noisy jays protested as we walked towards the tower hide.

We then decided to visit the Tyler hide for a closer view of the little-ringed plovers (apparently a total of nine were on the reserve) and with the aid of the scopes could clearly see their yellow eye rings. Lapwing, redshank, gadwall, teal, shoveler, shelduck, tufted duck, mallard and a pied wagtail were also seen.

After a break for lunch three of the group left for home and the rest set off on the left trail hoping to see the garden warbler which Nigel and Judy had found earlier in the morning.

We stopped to watch the two grey herons on their respective nests and could hear the chicks bill-clapping deep in the vast mass of their twiggy nurseries.

More and more swallows were seen along with both sand and house martins as they hawked insects over the lake. Warren and others spotted a red kite drifting over and Steve heard a grey wagtail call but it couldn't be located.

On the sheep field, amongst the newborn lambs, were carrion crows, jackdaws, stock doves and a pheasant. A lesser black-backed gull flew over surveying the scene and a soaring sparrowhawk was mobbed relentlessly by a corvid as they both flew higher and higher..

Both green and great-spotted woodpeckers were seen and heard and we spotted a colony of wild bees nesting in a dead tree hole. Butterflies were represented by orange-tips, small whites and speckled woods.

Once more, a very enjoyable day in good company, with fresh air, exercise and a bird list of 53 species. Thanks to all who participated.