22nd Sep

A nice day after a foggy start produced another large movement of Swallows in the afternoon along with five Grey Wagtails and two Yellow Wagtails in the morning whilst the best of the grounded migrants was a single Firecrest. The sea was also fairly quiet with seven lingering Arctic Skuas and two Great Skuas passing west being the highlights.

Six Porpoises and a Grey Seal were seen offshore and a Brown Hare was seen on the land.

A Clouded Yellow was the best of the butterflies.

A search just after dusk this evening produced plenty of singing Tree Crickets in the usual area.

Today two of us attended a meeting at Sandwich Bay which was looking at ways of working more closely with our french colleagues on a "Migrating Birds of the Straits of Dover" project. It was an enjoyable day and great to meet up with our french friends again. Thank you to Caroline Delelis for organizing and chairing the meeting and to Sandwich team for hosting us.



21st Sep

Given the change to a more southerly breeze the day was a bit disappointing. There were very few grounded migrants and overhead passage was more or less limited to hirundines with 3500 Swallows passing through along with three Grey Wagtails and 105 Meadow Pipits. Other grounded bits included 20 Chiffchaffs and five Wheatears.
Seawatching was also slow but six hours of observation eventually produced 20 Arctic Skuas, two Great Skuas, a Black Tern and 625 Sandwich Terns.

Two Clouded Yellows were seen during the day.

20th Sep

There was a decent arrival of Chiffchaffs this morning along with a latish Willow Warbler, 12 Blackcaps and a Sedge Warbler.
More hirundines moved through with 5000 Swallows and 650 House Martins and six Grey Wagtails and six Siskins also passed overhead. The Osprey made a couple of visits into the area again.

About 14 Arctic Skuas and a Mediterranean Gull were lingering offshore.

Three Porpoises were feeding offshore and Brown Hare was seen on the land. 

On a more or less unrelated subject but of great interest was the snagging in pot lines of an aeroengine by Joe Thomas and brought ashore this afternoon. It is a 9 cylinder radial engine and various suggestions have been made on Twitter as to what it may have been part of. The most likely options so far appear to be either from a B-17 Flying Fortress or Dornier D-17. Hopefully there will be a definitive answer shortly.  




Covered in a variety of deep sea life we do not usually see.

19th Sep

A small arrival of migrants on the land included 55 Chiffchaffs but hirundine passage increased considerably with 15,000 Swallows and 650 House Martins. Other bits passing overhead included eight Yellow Wagtails, seven Grey Wagtails, two Tree Pipits, a Redpoll and 14 Reed Buntings
Four Arctic Skuas were lingering offshore and the first Brent Geese of the autumn flew west along with eight Shelducks and 22 Eiders. The Osprey flew over the area again.

Five Porpoises were seen offshore.

Two White Storks flew NE over Lydd-on-sea this afternoon.

18th Sep

A surprising day with an arrival of at least 150 Chiffchaffs along with a Short-eared Owl, a Barn Owl,  five  Blackcaps, a Garden Warbler, three Spotted Flycatchers, three Redstarts and a Whinchat. Birds passing overhead included a Buzzard, a Hobby, ten Tree Sparrows, six Grey Wagtails and 14 Reed Buntings and the Osprey reappeared around the Point in the morning. At least three Arctic Skuas and a Little Tern were seen offshore.

Six Porpoises were seen offshore and two Brown Hares were seen in the Desert.

A Delicate was the highlight of a small catch overnight.

17th Sep

The day began with thick and very wet fog which only rarely produces anything of real note and today was no exception. There was a noticeable increase in Chiffchaff numbers but very little else in the way of grounded migrants. Overhead passage was also very slow until the skies cleared after which there were good numbers of Swallows and House Martins and the Osprey made another flyover into the Observatory recording area.
Two Yellow-legged Gulls were attracted to the offerings at the fishing boats whilst at least six Arctic Skuas were patrolling offshore.

Arctic Skuas Stercorarius parasticus   Dungeness   17th September 2017 
At least five Grey Seals and four Porpoises were feeding offshore.

Five Clouded Yellows and a Hummingbird Hawkmoth were seen.

16th Sep

A bright and sunny morning saw a small arrival of Chiffchaffs and Willow Warblers but most of the interest was overhead with the first big movement of hirundines for some time and later in the morning some excellent raptor activity. Very conservative estimates of numbers were 2000 each of Swallow and House Martins with a few Sand Martins also still moving through. The highlights of the raptor movement was a Honey Buzzard and 17 Buzzards whilst the "local" Osprey made several visits into the Observatory recording area. Four Grey Wagtail also flew over and perhaps most surprising was a flock of ten Ravens which may well be a record Dungeness count.

Whilst movement offshore appeared to have virtually ceased there was still plenty of activity with at least six Arctic Skuas marauding up and down the beach, good numbers of Sandwich Terns still feeding, the Eider floating around and a brief appearance of a first-year Caspian Gull at the fishing boats.


Eider Somateria mollissima   Dungeness   16th September 2017

Arctic Skua Stercorarius parasticus   Dungeness   16th September 2017

Six Porpoises were feeding offshore and a Brown Hare was also seen.


Two Clouded Yellows and two Hummingbird Hawkmoths were seen around the Observatory and a Pearly Underwing was the only moth of any note trapped overnight.