Sightings18/06/2021

Harbour Update – posted 18/06/21

The rain arrived today, but luckily held off for our Nightjar walk last night, which ended up being quite exceptional. What initially looked set to be a wet, soggy stomp around Slepe Heath ended up being one of the best Nightjar walks we’ve ever hosted. You know a walks going to be good when you find not one, but two burrowing Sand Lizard right next to the footpath, allowing our group to stand and watch this incredibly rare event. Female Sand Lizards wait for mild, muggy evenings in June to egg lay, and when burrowing, tend to do it during the cover of darkness as they enter a trance like state, fully focused on getting the burrow dug and the eggs laid. As we stood and watched one of the lizards burrowing we were surrounded by Dartford Warbler calls and a distant Cuckoo. Then, at 21:45 the Nightjar put on an incredible display with no less 8 seen bombing around us, producing a whole range of vocalisations at close range, allowing everyone to hear clearly the different call types. Then, the night was finished off with the first Glow Worm of the season. Just magical.

Also today, after a three day absence both Ospreys 022 and CJ7 made a couple of brief appearance on the nest cam, 022 still finding it difficult to share any bit of fish with CJ7, in fact having had three days apart he looked positively terrified of her! Still, it was good to see him/them back and with some nest tidying going on with CJ7 even bringing back some nest material too. With all this hot weather recently, they’ve probably enjoyed a bit of cooling in the rain today.

The Barclays Peregrines were pretty quiet today, although are now mixing it up a little bit and settling on different balcony ledges with one now able to fly, do a circuit then land again (not on the floor)!

The Great White Egret was in Middlebere again and the Marsh Harrier pair were active at dawn despite the rain, provisioning the young¬† of which we still don’t know how many there are? Can’t wait to see the first heads bob up and test flights take place.

Male Osprey 022 back on the nest after a 3 day absence 

Female Sand Lizard nest burrowing – Slepe Heath

 

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