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Local weather


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31st Dec

The year ended with a continuation of the wet and windy weather of the last few days and limited observations to seawatching. The highlights here were a Great Northern Diver west and two Caspian Gulls on the beach while numbers were provided by a steady flow of Red-throated Divers, Gannets, Kittiwakes and auks.

A Grey Seal was also seen.

Memories of Dungeness and Dungeness Bird Observatory

 Over the years we have heard many stories about the 'Old Days' so we thought it would be good to collect these stories together before they got lost altogetgher. 144 pages of memories, photos and anecdotes are now gathered together and available from the Observatory at £12.00 plus P & P. 2nd class £2.30, 1st class £2.80. 

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30th Dec

Another thoroughly miserable day with strong to gale force SSE winds and heavy rain making even seawatching a real challenge. Of note offshore were five Fulmars, 110 Gannets, 300 Kittiwakes and 300 auks all heading west. A gull session at the Point in the afternoon produced three Caspian Gulls.

Two Grey Seals were feeding offshore.

29th Dec

A miserable morning of strong winds and heavy rain limited observations to a couple of seawatches but not a great deal was seen other than 85 Red-throated Divers, 100 Kittiwakes and 200 auks heading west.  

28th Dec

An hour seawatch this morning produced 175 Brent Geese moving up-channel and 650 Kittiwakes moving down-channel.

25th Dec

Very limited coverage today (for obvious reasons) but a Ring-necked Parakeet flying around the Point was an unexpected sighting.

24th Dec

The Iceland Gull first seen yesterday was seen at the Patch in the morning along with five Mediterranean Gulls and what was presumably the same first-winter Glaucous Gull flew west along the beach but was not seen again. Two Chiffchaffs and four Firecrests were seen in the Trapping Area/Southern Long Pits.

Happy Christmas

 Happy Christmas to all our Friends, Followers and Visitors. Best Wishes for 2023.

Click on the picture 

23rd Dec

A very dull, wet start to the day but as the visibility improved slightly around mid-morning a short check off the fishing boats was made. While passage seemed to be limited to a few auks and Kittiwakes it was clear that there had been an influx of gulls and large numbers of Gannets feeding just offshore. In fact it turned into a bit of a gull fest with the finding of a third-winter Iceland Gull, a first-winter Glaucous Gull and four first-winter Caspian Gulls. In addition, two adult Little Gulls were feeding at the Patch. A party of nine White-fronted Geese also came in over the Lifeboat Station.

Iceland Gull Larus glaucoides   third-winter   Dungeness   23rd December 2022

Caspian Gull Larus cachinnans   first-winter   Dungeness   23rd December 2022
One of four individuals seen this morning.

Gannets Morus bassana   Dungeness   23rd December 2022
Large numbers were feeding very close inshore this morning.

A Common Seal and a Grey Seal were also feeding offshore. 

22nd Dec

A quick check of the trapping area and the Desert this morning produced four Snipe, a Chiffchaff and three Goldcrests of note. The sea was very quiet. 

21st Dec

More wind and rain. Just a first-winter Caspian Gull on the beach and 150 Kittiwakes west offshore of note.

20th Dec

Another wet and windy morning but with a lot more birds offshore. Of note were a Red-breasted Merganser, 191 Red-throated Divers, a Black-throated Diver on the sea, 350 Gannets, a Mediterranean Gull, a Little Gull, a Yellow-legged Gull and three Caspian Gulls (two first-winters and one third-winter), 450 auks and a Marsh Harrier which came in from the east.

A Porpoise and a Grey Seal were feeding offshore.

19th Dec

A wet and windy day with limited coverage. A Little Gull and a Mediterranean Gull were feeding offshore and the only birds of any note.

18th Dec

It was very cold overnight and first thing but the thaw arrived with a vengeance this afternoon with continuous heavy rain and strong winds. A two-hour seawatch in the morning produced 190 Gannets, 20 Kittiwakes and four Mediterranean Gulls passing west and a flock of 60 Lapwing came in.

A Grey Seal was seen offshore.

17th Feb

Very little to be seen on another very cold, calm and clear day although coverage was fairly limited.

A Common Seal was seen offshore.

16th Dec

Still quiet despite the continuing very cold conditions. A Snipe, a Chiffchaff, three Redwings and two Song Thrushes were seen in the Trapping Area.

15th Dec

A search on the land produced two Water Rails, a Woodcock, a Snipe, three Chiffchaffs, five Firecrests and 20 Blackbirds of note. There were lots of gulls at the Patch but the only one of interest to be seen was an adult Yellow-legged Gull.

14th Dec

Very quiet.

Two Porpoise were feeding offshore.

13th Dec

It is still very quiet on both land and sea despite the continuing cold weather. A Water Rail and a Chiffchaff were in the Trapping Area and a first-winter Caspian Gull was seen at the Patch.

A Porpoise was feeding offshore.

12th Dec

Very quiet offshore despite the arrival of some very wintry weather. A Firecrest and a Dartford Warbler were seen on the land.

A Porpoise was feeding offshore.

11th Dec

Limited daylight and time spent WEBS counting meant very little coverage of the Observatory recording area.

10th Dec

Two White Storks flew over the recording area this afternoon. A Black Redstart was seen in front of the Power  Station.

Three Grey Seals were feeding offshore.

Elsewhere, the Green-winged Teal was seen on Burrowes again and the Dotterel reappeared with Golden Plovers at Cockles Bridge. Two Whooper Swans continue to be seen on the ARC Pit. The two Glossy Ibis appear to have moved to Dengemarsh and several Cattle Egrets continue to be seen in the wet fields between Boulderwall and Lydd.

9th Dec

Thick, freezing fog through the morning severely limited any observations and meant a day of  paperwork.

8th Dec

The first really cold weather of the winter appeared to have had very little effect on the birds with just five Chiffchaffs in the trapping again and a Siskin overhead. There was no sign of any movement offshore.

7th Dec

Two Dartford Warblers were associating with two Stonechats at the Point and two Chiffchaffs and five Redwings were seen in the Trapping Area.

A Grey Seal was seen offshore.

6th Dec

A first-winter Caspian Gull was roosting at the fishing boats this morning, a Jack Snipe was seen at the Long Pits and a Woodcock, five Chiffchaffs and a Firecrest were seen in the trapping area.

A Grey Seal was feeding offshore.

5th Dec

Very quiet offshore and just five Chiffchaffs in the trapping area of interest.

The Green-winged Teal was seen on Burrowes Pit again and the Dotterel was seen in a flooded field at Lydd Airport.

4th Dec

Five Teal, an Eider and two Red-breasted Mergansers flew west and three Mediterranean Gulls were feeding offshore. Three Chiffchaffs were seen in the trapping area.

The drake Green-winged Teal was seen on Burrowes Pit again.

3rd Dec

Five Red-breasted Mergansers and a Sandwich Tern were seen offshore and a Woodcock and a Chiffchaff were seen in the trapping area.

The drake Green-winged Teal was seen on Burrowes Pit again and a Dotterel was seen amongst the Golden Plovers at Cook's Pool on the RSPB Reserve. A flock of 11 Pink-footed Geese were in the fields at the back of Scotney. Sixteen Cattle Egrets and two Glossy Ibis were feeding in the flooded fields between Boulderwall Farm and Cockles Bridge. 

2nd Dec

Very little movement offshore with just three Red-breasted Mergansers, two Little Gulls and two Sandwich Terns of interest. A Chiffchaff was seen in the trapping area.

Elsewhere, the drake Green-winged Teal was seen again on Burrowes Pit.

1st Dec

Thirteen Little Gulls flew west and a few Gannets, Red-throated Divers and auks were seen offshore, a Snow Bunting flew over the fishing boats and a Firecrest was seen in the trapping area.

A Porpoise and two Grey Seals were feeding offshore.

The drake Green-winged Teal was seen on Burrowes Pit again.

30th Nov

A party of seven Pink-footed Geese which flew north over the area in the afternoon and a Snow Bunting around the Point were the highlights of the day. A first-winter Caspian Gull, eight Little Gulls and six Mediterranean Gulls were feeding at the Patch while four Sandwich Terns and 100 Razorbills were offshore and birds passing included 12 Wigeon, a Pochard, two Velvet Scoters and a Black-throated Diver. A Woodcock also came in from the east and seven Chiffchaffs, two Redpolls and 100 Goldfinches were seen in the bushes. 

Two Grey Seals and a Porpoise were seen offshore and a Badger was seen in the Observatory garden.

The Green-winged Teal was seen again on Burrowes Pit on the RSPB Reserve.

29th Nov

Limited coverage today but seven Little Gulls and seven Mediterranean Gulls and an Arctic Tern were seen at the Patch and two Chiffchaffs, a Dartford Warbler, six Fieldfares, 120 Chaffinches and a Siskin were seen on the land. 

28th Nov

Very little offshore passage with just 28 Teal and eight Mediterranean Gulls and two first-winter Caspian Gulls at the fishing boats. The Patch continues to be active with 20 Little Gulls, another Mediterranean Gull, an adult Mediterranean x Black-headed Gull hybrid and an Arctic Tern feeding there.

A handful of birds on the land included two Fieldfares, six Redwings and three Song Thrushes.

Three Grey Seals and a Common Seal were feeding offshore.