The rest of Tuesday morning was spent on Sandwich estate along the Old Deal Road in pleasant sunshine.
Old Deal Road February 2020
A few migrants topped by two or three Whinchats. Supporting cast were twelve Whimbrel, several buzzards (two sat on gateposts 10 metres apart), at least five Kestrels, a covey (or family group) of ten Grey Partridge, one Pheasant, a few Whitethroats, one Blackcap, one Lesser Whitethroat, one Great-spotted Woodpecker, small flocks of Goldfinches and Linnets and large flocks of Starlings many youngsters looking like Rollers with their pattern Beige heads and spotted, shiny black fronts. Rooks, Crows and Jackdaws everywhere and a few Stock Doves and a great many Wood Pigeons.
The top bird was undoubtedly a Ring-tailed Hen Harrier hunting low over Worth Marshes – every time it turned the sun shone off its fawn feathers and it fanned its tail showing the bars across it. We watched it for around fifteen minutes before it drifted over the buzzards and out of site.
That concluded a really nice morning’s birding. What Maggie and I call ‘quality birding’. No great rarities, no spectacular flock sizes and only a couple of ‘year ticks’. But terrific views of some top birds.
It was much sunnier when we got home and looking around the garden we had a Common Blue butterfly. For us that is uncommon as almost all the ‘blue’ butterflies we get are Holly Blues. Below a decent photo with wings folded, and a terrible photo of wings apart, but showing just how blue this butterfly is.