24th March 2014
A lovely sunny day so Andy and I popped down to Rainham Marshes to see if there were any early migrants. As has often been the case recently there was nothing in front of the Pyfleet Scrape hide so we decided to do an anti-clockwise circuit. Considering the warm and sunny weather there were not many birds in song, except that is for Cetti's Warblers. There seem to be more than ever this year and the one close to the cordite stores was particularly vocal. As is normally the case it was deafening just a few yards away but totally hidden until, that is, it broke cover and flew into a tree. Although it was fairly deep inside it was just visible and offered a rare opportunity for a shot. Not my best, but a good start to the day.
Continuing round along the northern edge by the railway a Coot was enjoying the sun on the sheltered edge of his reedmace home, and a Reed Bunting put in a rather stunning appearance posing on a fresh green Hawthorn. A good sign of Spring but not quite what we were looking for, so as we entered the return leg we left the reserve via the one-way turnstile and went up on to the river wall.
The tide was right out so no sign of any pipits, but as we walked west along the foreshore we could see movement amongst the vast quantity of rubbish dumped there by the tidal surge. We walked almost up to Coldharbour Lane before we caught up with the four Wheatears that were always moving ahead of us. Our patience was eventually rewarded when we managed to approach close enough for some shots although it is noticeable that many shots have a rubbish background or, to be more precise, a background full of rubbish. So what do you think of it so far?