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Local weather

Update

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18th May

A Hobby flew over and two Spotted Flycatchers were seen in the bushes but the lack of common migrants is really starting to look very concerning. On the positive side the numerous pairs of Stonechats are now churning out lots of young birds.

A Brown Hare was seen in the Desert.

Two Holly Blue butterflies were seen.

17th May

Three Buzzards and a Yellow Wagtail flew over but grounded migrants were virtually non-existent yet again. A Black-throated Diver flew east offshore.

A bat trapping session at the Long Pits in the evening produced a male Nathusius's Pipistrelle which was subsequently Motus-tagged and also three Soprano Pipistrelles while a Noctule Bat flew over.

16th May

Rain for most of the day hampered observations but it was clear that very little in the way of migrants had arrived.

Two Brown Hares were seen on the land. 

15th May

Another day of decent conditions but very few migrants to be seen. Seawatching produced just seven Mediterranean Gulls and six Arctic Skuas. The Melodious Warbler from yesterday showed much better around the Moat in the dry and sunny conditions but the most intriguing report was of a female Cirl Bunting seen briefly and photographed at the Point. Whilst searching for this bird a flock of 15 Corn Buntings were also found.


Melodious Warbler Hippolais polyglotta    Dungeness   15th May 2024 (by Tom Wright)

A Porpoise and a Grey Seal were seen offshore and a Brown Hare was seen in the Desert.

Butterflies of note included a Grizzled Skipper and two Holly Blues.

14th May

A day of almost continuous light rain and light SE winds. Migrants remained very scarce on the land despite the conditions so an elusive Melodious Warbler in the Moat was a nice surprise. A Cuckoo, a Hobby, two Willow Warblers and a Garden Warbler were about the only other migrants to be seen. Seawatching was slow-going with just 107 Common Scoters, two Mediterranean Gulls, 41 Common Terns, an Arctic Skua and two Black-throated Divers of note.

Cuckoo Cuculus canorus   Dungeness   14th May 2024   (Tom Wright)

Five Brown Hares were seen.

13th May

Virtually the only migrant to be seen was a Bee-eater which spent a couple of  hours feeding from overhead wires along the road during the morning. A Firecrest was also seen.

Bee-eater Merops apiaster   Dungeness   13th May 2024   (Tom Wright)

Two Porpoises and a Grey Seal were feeding offshore.

12th May

A similar day to yesterday with a trickle of birds passing offshore but very quiet on the land. Birds seen offshore included 40 Brent Geese, five Whimbrel, five Sanderling, a Little Tern, 42 Common Tern, 32 Arctic Terns, eight Pomarine Skuas and four Arctic Skuas. A handful of birds on the land included a Cuckoo, a Common Sandpiper, two Willow Warblers and five Yellow Wagtails.

Three Porpoises and two Grey Seals were seen offshore.

Four Grizzled Skippers were seen.

11th May

Most of the interest was offshore today but hazy conditions made things quite difficult with a Velvet Scoter, 124 Whimbrel, eight Bar-tailed Godwits, 20 Sanderling, two Mediterranean Gulls, six Arctic Skuas and the highlight of 11 Pomarine Skuas. Very quiet on the land.

Four Porpoises and a Grey Seal were feeding offshore. 

10th May

Extremely quiet. A Redstart in the Desert, a Garden Warbler in the power station grounds and a Little Ringed Plover overhead were about the only birds of note.

The first Brown Argus butterfly of the year was seen at the Long Pits.

9th May

A brief Serin flew around the Point this morning otherwise it was quiet with just two Egyptian Geese, three Whimbrel and a singing Redshank. The seawatching was equally poor with over four hours of observation producing hardly anything of any interest.

Seven Porpoise and a Grey Seal were feeding offshore.

An Ornate Shieldbug was also found.