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These are the species recorded in the area so far this year. over Sheppey and on the Swale, and on adjacent areas to the reserve itself, west to Uplees copse and in the trees and scrub opposite the cottages.The only addition to the year list this month was a Jack Snipe on 1st which brought the total for the year to 170 species (two more than last year). The drake Green-winged Teal, though elusive at times, was seen on many dates up to at least 29th with two reported on 7th and 23rd.A Little Owl was working the fence posts as sunlight moved through; a Cettis was mobile along the ditches; and further into Oare , 4 Greenshanks were feeding together near the head of the creek. Still in the locale , a Grey Wagtail worked one of its favourite watercourses.

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3 Great –crested Grebes were off the point disputing fishing rights.

I didn`t recognise the buzzard- sized raptor perched on Mocketts hill. Dave Perrin reported a sighting of a male Hen Harrier later through Sheppey banks—good to know they still get down here for winter given the turbulent times further north.

The most surprising event was when we were watching the Long-billed Dowicher and doing a double take – as TWO Long-billed Dowitchers were feeding together on the East Flood!

We only had one compact camera between us but managed this shot.

I circuited the creek and associated ponds from Oare village.

21 Little Grebe were located and the Kingfisher was very mobile.

0830–1015 Pouring rain and dismal light but eventually caught up with the Green-winged Teal centrally E flood.

Teal numbers again building and birds were restless–although the bird does seem to spend much of its time roosting.

The adult Long-billed Dowitcher was present throughout the month with the juvenile also seen on 14th.

Other birds reported during the month included two drake Goosanders on 2nd, a ringtail Hen Harrier on 3rd and an adult male on 22nd, a Little Stint on 3rd, a Water Pipit on 22nd and a Brambling on 16th. The adult Long-billed Dowitcher was on the east flood.

circa 2000 Wigeon were well into TQ around South Deep and Fowley Island although no sign for me of the Shorelarks, and confirmed separately by two familiar faces. reported Shorelarks returning to the seawall from Fowley—-c`est la vie !

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