Monday, 6 September 2010

Roll over Rainham

This may look like a building site to you but to me this is a wide creek around 1m deep, stretching away from the sea wall, and then sub-dividing into narrower ditches and foot-drains (lower picture). Winter rainfall will fill and flood the site, draining down in summer to reveal muddy pools and edges. Specially designed scrapes will pull birds towards the viewing positions. This is the start of the next mega wetland site in Essex. This site will be special! Work started this week on Bowers Marsh to create a complex of wet grassland, scrapes and saline lagoons. Roll over Rainham.

Across the way, Vange Marsh scrape continues to pull in the birds. A shot below from last weekend shows Spoonbill, Red-necked Phalarope and Saltmarsh Goosefoot (don't believe everything you read in British Wildlife) - got them all? A quick sift through the mud and water today revealed one reason for the site’s success – food. Abundant chironomid larvae in the mud (bottom picture) and corixids (Lesser Water Boatman) in the slightly brackish water. Even West Canvey is getting in the act with a Temminck's Stint.

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