Sunday, February 27, 2011

An aerial view

East India Dock Basin: Dave Morrison

Dave Morrison took this photograph from a local tower block. it's an interesting perspective on the patch and shows quite well what a compact site it is; the largest area of woodland to the left is the copse at East India Dock Basin, the smaller area to the right on the other side of the dock is the eastern scrub, the green area above this is the meadow where I found a March 1st Wheatear in 2009. The eastern reedbed can be seen immediately to the right of the copse and just behind this the northern scrub where London's eighth Barred Warbler was found in September 2006. The building in the centre is the mothballed housing development on the Pura Foods peninsula, to the left of this a small section of Bow Creek is just visible; the flyover in the distance is the A13 road which marks the northern boundary of the patch. Many thanks to Dave for allowing me to use his image here.


Not a cloud in sight and bright sunshine, the dock put on a new coat today, unfortunately it was'nt one of many colours. February continued to be mundane as far as birds were concerned. The only species of note were a Stock Dove flying south and a male Reed Bunting flying over the road. A few birds were singing in the copse, including a Chaffinch, and still no sign of the elusive Water Rail.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Redshanks: Slight Return

Another grey day, and another day of few birds. EIDB was very quiet, just 1 Teal and 20 Tufted Ducks. The copse was empty apart from a single flowering Daffodil (hardly Wordsworth). A Grey Wagtail was feeding on a pool on Orchard Wharf. There was 130 Teal on Bow Creek and 15 Redshanks were in the roost with a Common Sandpiper. This is the highest Redshank count this year, but still way below what is usually present at this time of year. Met up with Nick, and we watched the Thames for awhile and talked about Gull identification, though this did not induce any interesting Gulls to pass by.

Friday, February 11, 2011

What a Brown and Grey day

Another gloomy dank morning on the River Thames. Water,mud and sky all merged into one (like a ECM Records cover). Tufted Duck count was 30, but no Teal were present on the Basin, and only about 50 on Bow Creek. The dock area was very quiet, and the Copse had just a few Chaffinch and Blue Tits.
A circuit of Bow Creek and the Ecology Park fared little better, with just 2 Redshank, continuing the very quiet start to 2011. Five Great Black-backed Gulls ( 2 adults, 1 2nd win and 1 1st win) were also on Bow Creek, with six adults on the Thames. Another stroll around the Dock revealed a Great Spotted Woodpecker in the Copse, the first of the year, and number 50 for me in 2011, though its been a hard slog to reach that total. I know you should'nt wish your life away, but I will be glad when March arrives and the expectation increases, with perhaps a little colour to brighten up the place.