My first proper day out of the year and indeed, for two weeks so it was off to RSPB Dungeness on a sunny bright morning all be it only barely above freezing at 9am.

Male Bearded Tit on Reeds
Male Bearded Tit

Female Bearded Tit on Reeds
Female Bearded Tit

It’s strange, I’d been hoping to photograph Bearded Tits for over a year, I’d go to the Reserve Viewpoint where everyone see’s them, but never did.
Suddenly, in October I saw a female at Minsmere, then a male at Dungeness, this morning I saw a pair, not on the Scrapeboard but flitting around the Reeds for a more natural photograph.
In fact, they were there for a good 10 minutes. A fine start to the day.

Male Reed Bunting (ringed)    Wild Funghi
Ringed Male Reed Bunting and Funghi, name I don’t know

There wasn’t a lot around the main Reserve so I ventured off, parked my Van at the Old Lighthouse and had a walk along the Beach. It seems that many birds enjoy a nap when the sun comes out, but the brisk walk helped to shake of the remainders of my Cold a bit.
After some lunch in the Camper I drove along to the ARC thinking the Bearded Tits would be my one and only ‘nice’ highlight, would stroll around and head off home.

Chiffchaff in January
Chiffchaff enjoying the early afternoon sun

As luck would have it (luck is the big word in birdwatching I’ve found), although fairly common birds, a Chiffchaff posed well in the Reeds by ‘The Pines’, some Reed Buntings were flying around here and there then upon a short walk accross to Boulderwood Farm at the RSPB Entrance, some Tree Sparrows were making good use of the Bird Feeders.

Tree Sparrow on Feeder
Tree Sparrow sharing Feeder with female Reed Bunting

It’s interesting speaking to people around and about, so many are very much like me, theyve become Pensioners and looked for something that’s going to interest them, get them out, keep relatively fit by walking at their own pace, in genral, a purpose.
You also find that some take it up simply for something to do and not convinced they’ll enjoy it, but they do, then before they know it, it’s out almost every day and venturing beyond the local area to see more and more.

Retirement I guess is a big reminder of age, but all the more reason to live the life and not, as the old TV Series suggested, ‘waiting for God’ !




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