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2016 Report

Our 2016 Report is now available from the Observatory for £8.00 plus P&P if needed. Please contact the Warden: dungenessobs@vfast.co.uk

14th Oct

It was fairly quiet for grounded migrants with two Merlins, a Firecrest, a Mistle Thrush and a few Song Thrushes and Blackbirds being about the best to be seen although the Wryneck made another brief appearance in the Desert. Visible migration was much more noticeable with 65 Skylarks, a Grey Wagtail, two Rock Pipits, two Bramblings,1300 Goldfinches, 780 Siskins and 56 Reed Buntings.
It was also a strange day offshore with a massive arrival of over 1000 Mediterranean Gulls into the area along with large numbers of Kittiwakes and Sandwich Terns and ten or so Arctic Skuas in attendance.


Mediterranean Gulls Icthyaetus melanocephalus   Dungeness   14th October 2018
Just part of the huge flock of Mediterranean Gulls and Kittiwakes feeding offshore today

Three Porpoises and a Grey Seal were also feeding offshore.

The event of the day on the insect front was the finding and capturing of another Asian Hornet Vespa vetulina as it fed on Ivy flowers at the Lighthouse Garden and what a stunner it is. Sadly as it is considered a very harmful invasive pest species and it cannot be released back into the wild.


Asian Hornet Vespa velutina    Dungeness   14th October 2018
In the field shots.

Admiring the Asian Wasp - the first wasp to be twitched in Britain?




Asian Hornet Vespa velutina   Dungeness   14th October 2018
A few close-up shots 
With a mass arrival of migrant moths across the country as a whole our moth traps were actually fairly disappointing with just the pyralid Palpita vitrealis of note but it was very windy so we were probably lucky to get this, A Blair's Shoulder-knot was also caught - only the 12th Observatory record.

Later in the day a Western Conifer Seed Bug was found at the Observatory. 
Western Conifer Seed Bug Leptoglossus occidentalis   Dungeness   14th October 2018

13th Oct

With the strong but very warm winds still blowing seawatching was the order of the day. Nearly eight hours of observations produced a Pintail, 2000 Gannets, four Great Skuas, 36 Arctic Skuas, 474 Mediterranean Gulls, 410 Kittiwakes, 225 Sandwich Terns and two late Black Terns of note, mostly passing westwards.
A first-winter Caspian Gull was seen on the beach at the fishing boats this afternoon.

A few Song Thrushes were seen in the bushes and 1700 Goldfinches and 250 Linnets passed through.

Two Porpoises and a Grey Seal were seen offshore.

The moth traps were very quiet in the windy conditions but a Hummingbird Hawkmoth was seen in the field and the caterpillar that was found on Sep.12th also hatched out.
Hummingbird Hawkmoth Macroglossom stellatarum   emerged from pupa    13th October 2018

The saga of the Asian Hornet continues with a male seen in a private garden and then it/or another individual was trapped not far away in the lighthouse garden.
Asian Hornet Vespa vetulina   male   Dungeness    13th November 2018   (D.Bunney)

12th Oct

Another very windy day which made observations on the land very difficult whilst the sea was disappointingly quiet again.
Gannets and Sandwich Terns continued to push through but 4.5 hours of watching produced just two Shovelers, two Great Skuas, maybe 15 Arctic Skuas, 52 Kittiwakes and seven Mediterranean Gulls of additional interest.
A few Goldfinches flew south, a Little Owl was found in the Desert and a Firecrest was still present in the lighthouse garden. A couple of late Sand Martins were also seen.
Seawatching at dawn   Dungeness   12th October 2018
Two Porpoises and a Grey Seal were feeding offshore.

Overnight moth trapping produced a Delicate, a Scarce Bordered Straw and a Clancy's Rustic of note.

Ivy Bees were feeding in good numbers in the Lighthouse Garden but the disturbing news on the insect front was that David Bunney videoed an Asian Hornet Vespa velutina in his garden yesterday. Despite searching it was not seen today.
Asian Hornet Vespa vetulina  11th October 2018  (D.Bunney))
This wasp was first seen in Europe in France in 2004 and has since spread rapidly from there across much of western Europe and was first recorded in Britain in 2016. It is considered one of the most harmful of all the invasive species listed by European Union  and is of particular concern because of its likely impact on the European Honeybee Apis mellifera. Please report any confirmed sightings to the Observatory or direct to the GB Non-native Species Secretariat.

11th Oct

A day with strong SSE winds and most of the interest offshore. Nearly seven hours seawatching produced five Sooty Shearwaters, 150 Mediterranean Gulls, an Arctic Tern and five Great Skuas of note along with a few wildfowl including 61 Brent Geese, six Shoveler, six Pintail, an Eider and three Red-breasted Mergansers. At least three Arctic Skuas were also lingering offshore.
It was very quiet on the land with just 17 Skylarks and a few Goldfinches heading out to sea, a Firecrest in the Lighthouse Garden and 12 Song Thrushes scattered around the Point.

Two Grey Seals were feeding offshore.

10th Oct

A few grounded migrants were present this with a Firecrest, ten Chiffchaffs, six Blackcaps, four Redwings, four Song Thrushes, four Wheatears and three Bearded Tits were in the reedbed at the Long Pits. The Wryneck was still present but continued to be fairly elusive. 
Visible migration also picked up a bit with a Buzzard, 45 Chaffinch, 250 Goldfinch, 230 Siskins and 20 Reed Buntings and also a flock of 20 Crossbills of note. 

The sea was very quiet with just two Mediterranean Gulls, 53 Sandwich Terns and two Arctic Skuas of interest.

A Delicate was the best of the overnight trapping and two Hummingbird Hawkmoths were seen during the day.

9th Oct

Although there was very little in the way of new grounded migrants there was still plenty of interest with the Wryneck showing again in the Desert and a Yellow-browed Warbler showing well at times in the trapping area. Other grounded migrants included 15 Chiffchaffs, 14 Redwings, six Song Thrushes, a Whinchat and two Wheatears.
There was also bit of visible migration with 150 Siskins of note along with a Merlin, two Yellow Wagtails, seven Grey Wagtails. six Bramblings, 75 Goldfinches and 25 Reed Buntings.
There was no signs of passage offshore but 28 Mediterranean Gulls were feeding off the fishing boats were of note.

One Porpoise was seen.

The moth traps turned up a goodie in the form of a Porter's Rustic. Not the most stunning of moths to look at but it is very rare in Britain and a new species for the Observatory traps. A Barred Yellow and a Beaded Chestnut were also trapped and three Hummingbird Hawkmoths were feeding in the Red Valerian around the Observatory.
Porter's Rustic Proxenus hospes   Dungeness   9th October 2018

8th Oct

A calm morning resulted in an interesting day on the land. With Yellow-browed Warblers turning up in numbers elsewhere it was not unexpected that one would turn up here but when it did it was extremely elusive and seen by only one person. Also very elusive were a Long-eared Owl at the Long Pits and a Wryneck in the Desert. The most spectacular sight of the day was probably a flock of nine Great White Egrets which came in low from the south east and headed steadily inland. 
Other grounded migrants included 30 Chiffchaffs, ten Blackcaps, two Fieldfares, 18 Redwings, 12 Song Thrushes, a Mistle Thrush, a Whinchat and a Wheatear while a Green Sandpiper, seven Grey Wagtails, five Bramblings, 60 Siskins and 20 Reed Buntings passed overhead.
The sea was very quiet with just two Mediterranean Gulls of interest.

Four Porpoises were feeding offshore.

A Hummingbird Hawkmoth was seen feeding at the Red Valerian near the Observatory.

Elsewhere, a co-ordinated roost count from Burrowes and ARC (by MC) produced a total of 23 Great White Egrets and five Cattle Egrets. The former equals the recent record count but omits the nine birds which came in earlier in the day and which presumably flew straight through.

7th Oct

After a wet and very windy night the day began with fresh northerly winds and clear skies which resulted in a decent amount of movement on both the land and sea.
Grounded migrants included a Firecrest, 25 Chiffchaffs, a Ring Ouzel, ten Song Thrushes, 16 Redwings, a Fieldfare a Redstart and a Wheatear. Overhead passage also provided some interest with five Grey Herons, two Buzzards, a Marsh Harrier, five Sparrowhawks, six Grey Wagtails, four Rock Pipits, 45 Chaffinches, eight Bramblings, 75 Goldfinches and 60 Siskins.
There were also plenty of birds moving in both directions offshore including a party of four distant Barnacle Geese heading west, 425 Brent Geese, 12 Pintail, six Teal, over 560 Gannets, 134 Mediterranean Gulls, 74 Sandwich Terns, five Arctic Skuas and a juvenile Pomarine Skua.

Two Porpoises and single Grey and Common Seals were feeding offshore.

6th Oct

A calm and sunny morning saw more Chiffchaffs arriving but very little else in the way of grounded migrants other than 15 Blackcaps and 10 Song Thrushes. Overhead passage was rarely busy but by the end of the morning a Mistle Thrush, three Tree Sparrows, nine Grey Wagtails, two Rock Pipits, a Brambling, 30 Goldfinches,150 Siskins and 75 Reed Buntings had flown through.
Very quiet offshore with just three Arctic Skuas and three Mediterranean Gulls of interest before the weather closed in in the afternoon.

Four Porpoises were feeding offshore.

Moth trapping produced a Hummingbird Hawkmoth and a Delicate.

5th Oct

With clear skies and almost no wind it was very quiet on the land with just a handful of Chiffchaffs and Blackcaps in the bushes and single Wheatear and Rock Pipit on the ground. Visible migration was limited to a party of six Buzzards, a Tree Sparrow, two Grey Wagtails, 40 Siskins and 30 Reed Buntings.
Passage offshore was also fairly slow and limited mainly to Sandwich Terns during the morning. However, there was a notable influx of at least 102 Mediterranean Gulls on the sea and beach. A Great Northern Diver and a Great Skua also flew west and a Manx Shearwater flew east and at least five Arctic Skuas were lingering.  


Mediterranean Gulls Ichthyaetus melanocephalus   Dungeness   5th October 2018
Two colour-ringed birds were among a group of birds on the beach.
Three Porpoises were feeding offshore. A Badger was running around the moat as we opened the nets in the morning.

The moth trap was quiet for migrants but in the afternoon a Convolvulus Hawkmoth larva was found and brought to the Observatory. We provided it with a pot of compost and it promptly buried itself and began to pupate.

Convolvulus Hawkmoth Agrion convolvuli   larva   Dungeness    5th October 2018
A Spiked Shieldbug was also found.
 
Spiked Shieldbug Picromerus bidens   Dungeness   5th October 2018

Elsewhere, six Cattle Egrets and 14 Great White Egrets came in to roost at the ARC Pit.

4th Oct

Clear skies and early morning mist and then fog rarely produces a great deal on the land and today was no exception. A few Chiffchaffs and Blackcaps were seen in the bushes, a Wheatear was seen in the Desert and two Rock Pipits were feeding at the fishing boats. Overhead passage was also pretty slow with a trickle of Siskins and Reed Buntings and four Grey Wagtails flying south. A Marsh Harrier also flew over.
Seawatching was fairly productive with over three hours of watching producing singles of Sooty and Manx Shearwaters, a Great Skua, 22 Arctic Skuas and 12 Mediterranean Gulls. Sandwich Terns continue to be seen in large numbers with at least 300 offshore this morning.

Three Hummingbird Hawk-moths and a Scarce Bordered Straw were seen during the day a nd a Delicate was trapped overnight.

3rd Oct

The main event on the land was a big movement of hirundines with very conservative estimates of 5000 House Martins and 2000 Swallows whilst a Merlin, a Wood Lark, three Yellow Wagtails, nine Grey Wagtails, 35 Siskins and 60 Reed Buntings also flew over.
Seawatching was also fairly slow but did produce the occasional unusual bird including two Velvet Scoters, a Black-throated Diver, a Manx Shearwater, 10 Arctic Skuas,180 Kittiwakes, 12 Mediterranean Gulls and 400 Sandwich Terns.

At least three Porpoises and a Grey Seal were feeding offshore.

Several Ivy Bees Colletes hederae were seen at the Observatory and on Ivy at the Old Lighthouse Garden. This appears to be a new species for the recording area.



Ivy Bee Colletes hederae   Dungeness   3rd October 2018
Eight Cattle Egrets were seen on the RSPB Reserve again although they have moved around to Dengemarsh now.

2nd Oct

Very quiet on the land but quite busy offshore this morning. Of note were at least ten Arctic Skuas, ten Mediterranean Gulls, a Grey Plover, a Knot, 22 Dunlin, 27 Kittiwakes and a Mute Swan which came in from the east while numbers were provided by over 400 each of  Gannet and Sandwich Tern.

Eight Porpoise and a Grey Seal were feeding offshore.

A Delicate moth was trapped overnight.

1st Oct

There were still a few Chiffchaffs arriving today along with the first four Redwings of the autumn and a Firecrest but it was otherwise fairly quiet in the bushes.
A Buzzarda late Yellow Wagtail, a Grey Wagtail,16 Siskins and 12 Reed Buntings flew over the area.
There was a large feeding frenzy of Gannets, various gulls including 12 Mediterranean and 300 Sandwich Terns this morning but actual movement was very slow with just seven Arctic Skuas and a Great Skua of note in nearly three hours of watching.

At least ten Porpoises and three Grey Seals were feeding offshore.

A Clancy's Rustic was a notable catch in the mothtrap overnight.

The Buff-breasted Sandpiper continues to be seen, albeit distantly, in the fields behind Scotney and four Cattle Egrets were still present on the RSPB Reserve.

30th Sep

Another morning with decent numbers of Chiffchaffs and Blackcaps in the bushes but not much else. Overhead passage was very light but a Great White Egret over the trapping area was of note. 
The sea was very quiet in the morning but an afternoon seawatch produced a Pomarine Skua, four Arctic Skuas, two Great Skuas and 17 Mediterranean Gulls.

Seven Porpoises were feeding offshore.

Elsewhere, the Buff-breasted Sandpiper was still in the fields behind Scotney Pit and six Cattle Egrets were still being seen on the RSPB Reserve.

29th Sep

More of the same with another decent arrival of Chiffchaffs and a few Blackcaps along with the first two Jays of the autumn, five Firecrests, a late Willow Warbler, two Whinchats and nine Wheatears around the area. Visible migration was pretty slow but a Wood Lark made a brief appearance in mid-morning and a Rock Pipit also flew over. Three Great White Egrets also flew over the recording area.
The sea was very quiet with just a single Arctic Skua and 62 Wigeon of interest.

Only one Porpoise was noted feeding offshore.

A Delicate moth was trapped overnight and a Clouded Yellow was seen during the day.

Elsewhere, the Reserve held nine Cattle Egrets and 23 Great White Egrets came in to roost at ARC and the Buff-breasted Sandpiper was still in the fields behind Scotney Pit in East Sussex..

28th Sep

The wind increased rapidly from mid-afternoon but before then there were a large arrival of Chiffchaffs, at least 100, and smaller numbers of Blackcaps but again not a great deal else.
Overhead passage was also limited with two Rock Pipits and a Grey Wagtail of interest.
Over three hours of seawatching produced a Great Skua, about ten Arctic Skuas and seven Mediterranean Gulls.

Six Porpoises and two Grey Seals were feeding offshore.

Elsewhere, the Buff-breasted Sandpiper was in the fields behind Scotney Pit but remains very hard to see and at least seven Cattle Egrets were with the cattle near Boulderwall Farm on the RSPB Reserve.

27th Sep

Good numbers of Chiffchaffs again and small numbers of Blackcaps but not a great deal else on the land and a steady movement of Swallows and House Martins south during the day.
Very quiet offshore with just four hunting Arctic Skuas, a Mediterranean Gull and an Arctic Tern this afternoon.

Six Porpoises and a Grey Seal were feeding offshore.

The warm weather saw plenty of butterflies on the wing with three Clouded Yellows and a Holly Blue of note. 


26th Sep

Another morning with plenty of Chiffchaffs and Blackcaps in the bushes and a big movement of hirundines overhead with at least 7000 Swallows and 2000 House Martins passing through. Other grounded migrants included two Lesser Whitethroats, 15 Whitethroats, a Spotted Flycatcher and six Wheatears whilst a Buzzard, a Hobby, 200 Sand Martins, four Grey Wagtails, four Yellow Wagtails, ten Siskins and 30 Reed Bunting added to the variety of birds passing overhead.
The sea was very quiet in the calm conditions but a Grey Phalarope was seen off the fishing boats again.

Five Grey Seals, a Common Seal and six Porpoises were feeding offshore and a Brown Hare was seen on the land.

There was a good selection of butterflies on the wing with a Clouded Yellow and two Painted Ladies of note and also several fresh Meadow Browns.

The Buff-breasted Sandpiper made a brief appearance at Scotney and Cattle Egrets continue to be seen on the Reserve.  

25th Sep

A calm, cold and clear morning brought another decent drop of migrants with 70 Chiffchaffs and 50 Blackcaps making up the bulk and also a Spotted Flycatcher.
Passsage overhead was quite good with a Greenshank, a Hobby, 440 Sand Martins, 500 Swallows, eight Grey Wagtails and 20 Reed Buntings.
An afternoon seawatch produced 12 Arctic Skuas and another Grey Phalarope.

At least six Porpoise were feeding offshore.

A Clouded Yellow was seen in the moat.

Elsewhere, a Buff-breasted Sandpiper was seen on one of the new pits behind the main pit at Scotney and nine Cattle Egrets were seen on the Reserve.

24th Sep

There was a decent arrival of migrants today with 60 Chiffchaffs and 70 Blackcaps providing the numbers along with good variety of scarcer migrants including singles of Short-eared Owl, Pied Flycatcher and Redstart and three Wheatears. Birds passing overhead included four Buzzards, two Yellow Wagtails, 260 Meadow Pipits, 17 Siskins and 28 Reed Buntings.
Seawatching was fairly quiet but fours hours of observation eventually produced totals of two Great Skuas and 16 Arctic Skuas.The Grey Phalarope was seen again.
Pied Flycatcher Ficedula hypoleuca   Dungeness    24th September 2018

Wheatear Oenanthe oenanthe   Dungeness   24th September 2018 (Marcus Lawson)
At least two Grey Seals and five Porpoises were feeding close inshore.

A Western Conifer Seed Bug was seen on one of the Observatory windows this afternoon.

23rd Sep

Another cold, wet and windy day which produced very little other than a trickle of birds offshore. Seawatching for much of the day produced just three Brent Geese, 12 Great Skuas, seven Arctic Skuas and two Mediterranean Gulls. Three Yellow-legged Gulls were also roosting on the beach.

Ten Porpoises and three Grey Seals were feeding offshore from the fishing boats.

22nd Sep

With a drop in the wind there was much more activity this morning but heavy rain from early-afternoon brought a premature end to proceedings.

There were two Whinchats and a few Chiffchaffs and Blackcaps on the land and Meadow Pipits passed through in large numbers with 670 counted. An Osprey heading west along the beach was particularly significant and four Yellow Wagtails, a Grey Wagtail, a Tree Pipit and four Reed Buntings also passed overhead.

Five hours of seawatching produced two Great Skuas and 44 Arctic Skuas, 25 Mediterranean Gulls, 656 Sandwich Terns, four Arctic Terns and three Little Terns. A Grey Phalarope was also offshore, anywhere between the Patch and the fishing boats, during the morning.

At least six Porpoise and a Grey Seal were feeding offshore. 

Elsewhere five Spoonbills, eight Cattle Egrets and a Pectoral Sandpiper were seen on the Reserve.

21st Sep

A day with more strong, mostly westerly, winds which unfortunately resulted in very little movement offshore and difficult conditions on the land.
Nearly five hours of seawatching produced the first two Red-breasted Mergansers of the autumn, ten Arctic Skuas and 225 Sandwich Terns but very little else. An adult Yellow-legged Gull was feeding at the fishing boats. There was no sign of yesterday's Grey Phalarope.

A Grey Seal and six Porpoises were feeding offshore.

It was equally slow going around the RSPB Reserve but seven Cattle Egrets were still with the cattle in the fields alongside the entrance track.


20th Sep

Another breezy day with most of the interest offshore. Coverage for most of the day produced ten Balearic Shearwaters, a Sooty Shearwater, 21 Arctic Skuas, two Mediterranean Gulls, a remarkable total of 2243 Sandwich Terns, two Arctic Terns, 102 Common Terns and a Black Tern. The best of the bunch arrived late in the afternoon though when a Grey Phalarope came in and landed on the sea at the fishing boats and then proceeded to feed just offshore.
Swallows continued to move south with at least 1000 passing through and a Redstart was also seen but the land was generally quiet.








Grey Phalarope Phalaropus fulicarius   Dungeness   20th September 2018
At least eight Porpoises and a Grey Seal were feeding offshore.

A Delicate moth was found in the kitchen this morning.

19th Sep

With very windy conditions it was tough going on the land with just a Spotted Flycatcher in the moat and a steady flow of Swallows and House Martins through the morning. A Kestrel caught in the Crow Trap was an uncommon bird for us to ring here.

Kestrel Falco tinnunculus   Dungeness   19th September 2018
The main interest was at sea but even here it was fairly tough going but five hours of watching eventually produced four Balearic Shearwaters, a Little Gull, 881 Sandwich Terns, two Black Terns, a Great Skua and 20 Arctic Skuas.

At least eight Porpoises and a Grey Seal were feeding offshore.

A small catch of moths included another Delicate.

In the evening a male Southern Oak Bush-cricket was found clinging to the kitchen window. 
Southern Oak Bush-cricket Meconema meridionale   male   Dungeness   19th September 2018

18th Sep

With the wind increasing quickly during the night most of the observations involved seawatching but the Wryneck was seen again though still elusive and a Firecrest and a Spotted Flycatcher were also seen. Lots of Swallows and House Martins also passed through.
Several hours of seawatching produced two Balearic Shearwaters, a Great Skua, 16 Arctic Skuas, a Mediterranean Gull, 518 Sandwich Terns and two Black Terns.

At least five Porpoises were feeding offshore.

The best of the moths trapped overnight were a Clancy's Rustic (the first at the Observatory since 2013) and another two Delicates.

Elsewhere, the Cattle Egret population on the Reserve has increased to seven birds.

17th Sep

The Wryneck was still present but it has become much more elusive over the last few days and is being seen only a few times during the day. Grounded migrants were fairly scarce again but they did include two Firecrests, a Redstart, two Whinchats and eight Wheatears. Passage overhead was dominated by Swallows with fewer House and Sand Martins and also two Swifts.
The sea was also quiet except for a short run of ten Arctic Skuas and some Sandwich Terns in the afternoon.

At least ten Porpoises were feeding offshore.

A Clouded Yellow and at least 10 Painted Ladies were seen.

An evening search for orthoptera produced a female Sickle-bearing Bush-cricket and hundreds of singing Tree Crickets.

Four Delicates were the best the Observatory moth traps could come up with but Martin Casemore trapping at his house in Lydd really came up with the goods when he found this sensational Oleander Hawk-moth in his trap. 
Oleander Hawk-moth Daphnis nerii   Lydd   17th September 2018


16th Sep

Quiet on the land with just the long-staying Wryneck and a Whinchat of note while birds passing overhead included 1000 Swallows, a Grey Wagtail and a Rock Pipit.
The sea was a bit more productive with five hours of watching producing two Manx Shearwaters, a Sooty Shearwater, 16 Ringed Plovers, 24 Dunlin, nine Sanderling, 17 Arctic Skuas, seven Mediterranean Gulls and 1322 Sandwich Terns.

Twenty Porpoises and a Grey Seal were feeding offshore.




15th Sep

Highlights today were the long-staying Wryneck and an adult Pomarine Skua west offshore. Other bits and pieces on the ground and overhead included a Buzzard, a Golden Plover, 12 Kestrels, 150 Sand Martins, 1000 House Martins, 700 Swallows, a Redstart, two Whinchats, a Tree Pipit and ten Reed Buntings. Five Arctic Skuas were also seen offshore.

Another Delicate moth was trapped overnight and five Hummingbird Hawkmonths were feeding at Red Valerian.

Five Cattle Egrets were seen at Boulderwall and ARC.

14th Sep

The highlight of the day was the finding of an Ortolan Bunting seen briefly in the moat before it flew off around the Point and then appearing to settle near the Railway Station. Despite searching it was not again until the late afternoon when it was on the access road to the Observatory. There was a decent spread of other common migrants with the best being 35 Chiffchaffs, a Goldcrest, three Pied Flycatcher and a Redstart. The Wryneck remained in its usual spots in the southern Desert area throughout the day.
There was also some overhead passage with two Merlins, 430 Sand Martins, 1000 Swallows, 2000 House Martins, 15 Yellow Wagtails, five Grey Wagtails, six Tree Pipits, five Siskins and 14 Reed Buntings
About 13 Arctic Skuas were seen offshore during the day and eight Black Terns flew west..

Six Porpoises and two Grey Seals were feeding offshore.

The moth traps did not produce much overnight but this aberrant Treble-bar was of interest.
An unusually marked Treble-bar Aplocera plagiata   Dungeness   14th September 2018
The Cattle Egret flock increased to five birds and are still being seen with the cattle in the fields at Boulderwall or at ARC.

13th Sep

A pretty decent arrival of birds occurred this morning with three Great Spotted Woodpeckers, 15 Willow Warblers, 30 Chiffchaffs, two Sedge Warblers, 30 Blackcaps, three Garden Warblers, ten Lesser Whitethroats, four Spotted Flycatchers, four Redstarts and three Whinchats. The Wryneck remained and gave good views at times.
Overhead passage was also of interest with at least 20 Common Buzzards, four Golden Plovers, 16 Yellow Wagtails, six Grey Wagtails, 560 Meadow Pipits, five Tree Pipits and the first ten Siskins of the autumn. 
Two first-winter Yellow-legged Gulls were feeding around the Fish Hut but the sea was very quiet. 
Wryneck Jynx torquilla   Dungeness  12th September 2018
Another shot of this crowdpleaser

Tree Pipit Anthus trivalis   Dungeness 13th September 2018
A species we rarely ring at Dungeness
Four Porpoises were feeding offshore.

Another Delicate was trapped overnight and two Hummingbird Hawkmoths were seen during the day.

12th Sep

There was very little change today with just Meadow Pipits and Linnets increasing into the hundreds but very else in the way of migrants. The Wryneck continues to show very well.
Also very quiet offshore with just five Arctic Skuas of note.
Wryneck Jynx torquilla   Dungeness   12th September 2018
Two Delicates were trapped overnight but the most surprising record was that of a Hummingbird Hawk-moth caterpillar also inside the moth trap.
Hummingbird Hawk-moth Macroglossom stellatarum   Dungeness   12th September 2018
The four Cattle Egrets and up to 12 Great White Egrets were still present on the RSPB Reserve.

11th Sep

A very breezy day with most of the attention offshore although a Wryneck continued to show in the scrub south of the trapping area. A Hobby and a Redstart were also seen there.
Five hours of seawatching resulted in three Balearic Shearwaters and singles of Manx and Sooty Shearwaters being seen along with two Mediterranean Gulls and six Arctic Skuas but not much else other than the continuing westward stream of Sandwich Terns.

Eight Porpoise and a Grey Seal were feeding offshore.

A male Southern Oak Bush-cricket was found in the front garden Privet bush.

10th Sep

A very quiet day on and over the land. One of the Wrynecks was still present along with ten Blackcaps and three Whinchats and seven Grey Wagtails flew over.
Several seawatching sessions produced a Manx Shearwater, 20 Arctic Skuas and one Mediterranean Gull.

At least six Porpoises were feeding offshore.

A decent catch of moths overnight produced a few migrants including a Gem and two Delicates. A search for crickets this evening was successful with a female Sickle-bearing Bush-cricket being found along with lots of singing Tree Crickets.
Gem Orthonama obstipata   Dungeness   10th September 2018
Delicate Mythimna vitellina   Dungeness   10th September 2018
Three Cattle Egrets and the Pectoral Sandpipers were still being seen on the Reserve.




9th Sep

The two Wrynecks were still present but fresh grounded migrants were almost non-existent with just a Grasshopper Warbler at the Long Pits of note. Overhead passage was almost at a standstill as well with just a trickle of hirundines passing through.
Sandwich Terns continue to pass offshore in big numbers and 12 Arctic Skuas, five Mediterranean Gulls and four Black Terns also flew but it was generally slow going after the first couple of hours.

At least 15 Porpoises were feeding offshore and a Brown Hare was also seen.

There were reasonable numbers in the moth traps overnight but the only notable record was that of another Delicate.

Elsewhere, four Cattle Egrets and a Pectoral Sandpiper were still present on the RSPB Reserve.

8th Sep

There were two Wrynecks in the scrubby areas to the south of the trapping area and were giving good views (in the morning at least). Other migrants were generally thin on the ground though with 15 Chiffchaffs, 30 Blackcaps, a Garden Warbler, a Spotted Flycatcher, three Redstarts, two Whinchats, nine Wheatears, five Tree Sparrows and ten Grey Wagtails of note. 
The sea was also fairly quiet but the first hour or so after dawn produced  two Great Skuas, six Arctic Skuas, seven Black Terns and a continuing stream of west-bound Sandwich Terns.

At least 15 Porpoises were counted.

A Delicate was the best of the moths trapped overnight and a Hummingbird Hawk-moth was seen by day along with two Clouded Yellows.

Elsewhere, three Cattle Egrets continue to be seen around Boulderwall or at ARC and a Pectoral Sandpiper was found at Dengmarsh. 

7th Sep

The Wryneck was still present and showed very well at times. The morning saw the first large movement of House Martins with 2000 birds counted along with 700 Swallows, eight Grey Wagtails, three Tree Pipits and four Tree Sparrows. There was a decent sprinkling of commoner migrants on the land with 15 Chiffchaffs, eight Lesser Whitethroats, two Spotted Flycatchers, three Redstarts, three Whinchats and 12 Wheatears of note.

Wryneck Jynx torquilla   Dungeness   7th September 2018
Two Caspian Gulls (a first-winter and a first-summer) and three Yellow-legged Gulls were seen at the fishing boats and an Osprey flew out to sea. Sandwich and Common Terns continue to pour westwards and two Black Terns and 11 Mediterranean Gulls were also seen. 





Caspian Gull Larus cachinnans   first-summer   Dungeness  7th September 2018
Four Porpoises and a Grey Seal were feeding offshore.

A Convolvulus Hawk-moth and an Oak Hook-tip were of note from the moth trap and a Holly Blue butterfly was also seen in the trapping area.