The highlight of a quiet autumn migration was the appearance of a juvenile Rose-Coloured Starling which appeared for a few days with the starlings feeding in the saltmarsh off the tramway near the visitor centre. The migrants started for flow through and many birdwatchers marvelled at Redstarts, Ringed Ouzels, Spotted and Pied flycatchers as they fed up before their crossings to the continent and on towards Africa. Out in the harbour Ospreys delighted the public as up to three birds regularly preformed around the site. But as the “twitchers” waited for the “mega” they spent their time satisfying their hunger for the unusual watching Wryneck and Yellow-Browed Warbler.

Pied Flycatcher, Redstart and Wryneck


However, time moves on and soon the summer visitors leave our shores and the harbour is filled up with the winter waterfowl and waders. The sounds of Wigeon, Teal and Brent Geese slowly started to fill the air as the cooler days started to push these species southwards. Lapwing a scarce breeding bird during the summer suddenly became more numerous around the mudflats and on the fields, soon joined by the whistle of Golden Plover. The Cattle Egret that graced the reserve over last winter slowly return until 25 were present by mid November. A brief fly over of Glossy Ibis was a first for the year but did not come down to the disappointment of many.

Cattle Egret


Out on the spit a Snow Bunting was located at Church Norton but only for the day but to the relief of many it reappeared for a few days at Medmerry, joining a Black Redstart one of many in the local area at the beginning of November. Less confining was a Lapland Bunting which was briefly seen on the North Wall before disappearing in to the saltmarsh.

Lapland Bunting


As the winter takes hold the invertebrates settle down to see out the winter in their little hidey holes until spring. But some are still active over the period however we did not expect a Long-Tailed Blue spotted at Church Norton. Nevertheless, a December Moth in the trap was a more regular resident.

December Moth