Trip reports

Rye Harbour (Leader Robin Smith)

Sunday, 30 July 2017

A magnificent seven (well six and me!) turned up at a very busy Rye Harbour car park for our annual visit to what potentially can be a productive venue. The down side was that a persistent strong wind did not ease for the entire visit and many birds decided it was far more comfortable snuggled down in the undergrowth than perching upon swaying stems and branches. However it did have some good moments. Excellent views of a pair of sedge warblers greeted us just a couple of metres off the path as we headed out alongside the caravan park.

Pete Saville picked up a nice mixed group of dunlins, turnstones in full breeding plumage and a ringed plover before disaster took over and the wind got the better of his scope which crashed to the ground breaking the tripod connection. This left us with just Warren's scope between us for the rest of the day. Several wheatears were flitting between the ground and fence posts stocking up their fat reserves before heading off south for the winter.

We had mixed success with the terns. The Sandwich terns were more distant than usual and staying low out of the wind on the ternery pool. No little terns were seen although the website did say that 15 pairs had bred this year. The common terns, however, put on a wonderful display with an assortment of chicks varying from 'small and fluffy' to 'almost fledged' being fed continuously with sandeels right in front of the hide.

The walk back through the scrubby area did not produce much in the way of passerines but a continuous flow of swallows and house martins twittering overhead as they prepared themselves for their flight to warmer climes.

A slightly disappointing day, due mainly to the windy conditions, but just enough of interest to keep us happy.

Robin Smith