US social scientist Kenneth Boulding : ‘If you believe exponential growth can go on in a finite world, you are either a madman or an economist’.

Sunday, 21 February 2010

21/2/10: Cray and Thames Rd wetland birds include 'white heron'

Out with the Thames21 Cray Riverkeepers today. Got wetter walking there in the rain than while clearing litter from the banks and the water by Maxim Rd, Crayford, since it stopped once we'd arrived. The usual lamentable array of plastic bags, bits of polystyrene and drinks cans, plus a chair and some dumped doors.

There were half a dozen or more House Sparrows in a bramble and rose thicket by disused factory premises on the south side of the river. Two Goldfinches landed briefly on shrubs outside the flats.

I noted the following birds along the Cray between Maiden Lane and Thames Rd:

4 Redwing
2 Ring-necked Parakeets
1 Moorhen
2 Great-spotted Woodpeckers chasing each other through a large Willow tree
2 Blue Tits
1 Magpie nest building
3 Mute Swan
3 Mallard

1 Rabbit was also seen.

I wanted to see what was using the Thames Rd wetland (a field deliberately flooded as part of a mitigation scheme for development elsewhere).

Thames Rd wetland looking south to sewer embankment and beyond

Thames Rd wetland looking east towards railway bridge

Walking along the sewer embankment the first birds spotted were 2 Chaffinches flocking with 6 Goldfinch.

There were 2 Coot on the water, a 'normal' pair of Mallard and a normal male and dark companion with a white breast. On the open water at the east end of the site, a male Shoveler floated into view. At one point there were 28 Black-headed Gulls, flown in from the Council dump site over the road, here. A lone Little Egret was spotted foraging for food, with apparent success. It took flight, but came back a short while later, a clear view being afforded for some time.

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