Elmley Marshes

Elmley Marshes
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  • Forum Thread: Saturday 20th August.

    Hello All, We had a good march around the reserve on Saturday. First is a record shot of a colour-ringed Spoonbill as mentioned in Gordon's blog Grey Heron Sky Lark Meadow Pipit Green Sandpiper Ruff Reed Warbler Peregrine And finally...
  • Forum Thread: Recent trips.

    Hello All, A few photos of recent trips to Elmley below. Wellmesh pool which has been allowed to dry because of Blue Green Algae. The Flying Dutchman Ruff Whinchat Cygnets And Mum taking time out Wood Sandpipers Little Stint alone and with a LRP....
  • Forum Thread: Elmley Last Week

    Hello All, Below are some photos from Elmley last week. Two immature Spoonbill dropped in very briefly Common Sandpiper Green Sandpiper Ruff Avocet Chick Hobby with unfortunate victim. Kestrel Greylag Family And finally...
  • Blog Post: 12th September

    As the highest tide of this series was yesterday, I sort of expected that the wader roost at Wellmarsh hide today wouldn't be quite as good. Funny how things are: there were more waders and a much better variety today. There are increasing numbers of juvenile curlew sandpipers (28) and little stint...
  • Blog Post: Another pec sand

    Highlight today was the discovery of the reserve's 2nd pectoral sandpiper of the autumn on the Flood at Wellmarsh hide. July's bird was an adult, but this bird was a juvenile, which is pretty much what you would expect at this time of year. Adults of the high Arctic breeding Calidrid waders ...
  • Blog Post: 2nd July

    After a weeks absence, the 2 sub-adult spoonbills were back on the Flood at Elmley this afternoon, showing from Wellmarsh hide. Not as many black-tailed godwits present as the past few days (the tide wasn't particularly high), but still at least 350, as well as 27 spotted redshank, 2 greenshank &...
  • Blog Post: 30th June

    A brief look on the Flood this afternoon produced at least 800 black-tailed godwit & 20 spotted redshank, along with single ruff, turnstone, green sandpiper & snipe. One of the black-tailed godwits out from Wellmarsh hide had been colour ringed and wore 3 "bracelets" on it's left...
  • Blog Post: Another red kite

    ...and I missed this one too! I was tied to the office for most of this morning, but escaped late am to do the various checks around the reserve. A quick glance at the "additional sightings" sheet in the carpark revealed that some lucky visitor had connected with our 2nd record of the year...
  • Blog Post: A Hat-trick of Grebes

    Today did not inspire. Overnight rain & more persistant rain this morning didn't fill me with any particular desire to get out on the reserve. But the pump needed re-fuelling and the sheep needed checking, so it was on with the waterproofs & waders & out on the quad bike. The rain had...
  • Blog Post: WHISKERED TERN!

    I was going to call this blog "March of the Med Gull", but more of that later. Todays visit by a whiskered tern was a long over-due first for the reserve and quite clearly the days highlight. Found by Rob Clements at c.10am, the bird stuck around the grazing marsh and Flood until c. 5pm...
  • Blog Post: 4th August

    Despite 6mm of rain falling in the space of 15 minutes or so during this afternoon's thunder storm, I still had to run the big Syke's 6" diesel pump onto the Flood for a few hours to top up dwindling water levels. It would be nice to be able to rely on rainfall to keep the Flood wet at the...
  • Blog Post: Short-eared owl

    This winter has been pretty hopeless for short-eared owls at Elmley. We had a run of records in the autumn and then very little after the first cold snap, with the last record back in January. Until now. For the past day or so, a bird has been hunting the fields around Kingshill Farm. I was returning...
  • Blog Post: VIP visit

    We had to comb our hair and run a hoover over the office today, as we welcomed a couple of VIP's to the reserve. Chris Corrigan, the SouthEast Regional Director and Mike Henderson, a Lib Dem councillor on Swale Borough Council visited and were gven the grand tour. The weather could have been better...
  • Blog Post: Been a long time since I rock & rolled..

    Well, here we are again. After a lot of investigation & loads of techy stuff waaay over my head, the bottom line is that I am now able to get onto the RSPB website from Elmley. So hopefully, normal service has been resumed. It's been about a month since my last update and in terms of water...
  • Blog Post: 7th July

    Bah!! White-tailed plover (or lapwing if you prefer) is one of those fantasy birds that I always imagined I'd find at Elmley. So when one finally turns up in the region, where does it end up? Rainham RSPB. Wrong side of the Thames. Still, a cracking bird & well done to Howard et al for pulling...
  • Blog Post: Shepherding

    Our sheep grazier rang yesterday to let me know that he was bringing up his rams to the reserve today (next years lambs!) and that the flock of tegs ( last years lambs) were due their inoculations. So it was out on the quad this morning to drive the 213 tegs off the Flood and into the pens. They've...
  • Blog Post: "My Ford Fiesta is full of stoats"

    NOT a quote from a Monty Python sketch, but another bizarre occurence for the Elmley warden. I'd experienced a bit of car trouble today and having got back to the reserve was slightly concerned by the smell of "overheating car" when I got out. Lifting the bonnet, I noticed 2 things: firstly...
  • Blog Post: Pectoral sandpiper

    The first rare of the autumn was found at Counterwall hide this afternoon. An adult pectoral sandpiper arrived in the company of a couple of ruff & stuck around, often showing very well right in front of the hide. Pec's are usually regarded as "Yanks", but their breeding range extends...
  • Blog Post: "Go, Cows!"

    A busy day on the reserve today, with the grazier coming in to pick up the last of his cattle, so we were out first thing to get them into the pens, ready for the lorry to arrive. We may bring in some other animals, just to "tickle" the sward a bit, but there's not much cow food left. Still...
  • Blog Post: A bit more like it!

    Well, the promised sunshine finally arrived today. And what a difference! Splendidly sunny (although still with a cool northerly breeze), it's really starting to feel more like spring. One of the sure signs was evident this afternoon, when a distinctive squealing call revealed a male marsh harrier...
  • Blog Post: 11th September

    The high tide roost at Elmley today saw 24 curlew sandpipers & 6 little stint, along with 193 dunlin, 3 spotted redshank, 2 ruff, 150 avocet, 5 bar-tailed & 25 black-tailed godwit, 2 turnstone, 200 ringed plover, 1 common & 3 green sandpiper & a greenshank. Raptors included a merlin,...
  • Blog Post: Mr Blue Sky

    The weather over the past few days has, by & large, been fantastic! Gloriously sunny days, light (or even no) winds, crisp & clear. On Saturday afternoon, the visibility was so good that, looking through my 'scope from Kingshill Farm, I could pretty much count how many people (12 - 15 I thought...
  • Blog Post: 2nd August

    No sign today of Saturday's pectoral sandpiper, but wader numbers & variety continue to increase. High tide this evening saw the following waders on the reserve: 12 spotted redshank, 1 greenshank, 275 curlew, 4 whimbrel, 5 ruff, 105 black-tailed godwit, 1 bar-tailed godwit, 35 grey plover, 7...
  • Blog Post: home again..

    Back at Elmley having spent 3 days in York at the RSPB Warden's Gathering (which included a very enjoyable trip to a previous stomping ground at Blacktoft Sands - plenty of good birds, including at least 26 spotted redshanks, 3 curlew sandpipers & a skein of pink-footed geese headed south. If...
  • Blog Post: 2nd April

    There's now been up to 3 spoonbills on the Flood on a daily basis since last weekend, but only 2 were present today. And I could only see one this evening, but hopefully one or more will hang around until tomorrow. Raptors today included 2 each of buzzard, sparrowhawk & peregrine + ring-tail...