Sunday, 21 December 2008

Glorious Mud

From just outside the village it is possible to look north across to The Isle of Thanet.

From this perspective the large Pegwell Bay looks like a narrow inlet between Sandwich and Ramsgate.

When you get to the car park at Pegwell Bay you overlook one of the richest eco-systems you can find. The inter-tidal zone is full of small items of food, crustaceans and various species of worms that feed on algae and other plankton. These are in turn fed on by lager animals, fish when the tide is up and birds when the tide is out. It is unfortunate that many governments regard these areas as wastelands ripe for development and "reclamation". Examples of this governmental vandalism can be found in Cardiff Bay and the Severn Estuary seems to be permanently under threat.

At Pegwell Bay large numbers of birds feed on the mud flats at low tide. Flocks of Lapwings, Golden Plovers and Oystercatchers are normally obvious in winter and they are joined by other species of waders, such as Sanderling, Redshanks, Curlews, Turnstone, Dunlin, Ringed Plovers and Grey Plovers. Occasionally the bay is host to a rarity such as the American (Lesser) Golden Plover in June.
Groups of Shelducks and Wigeon can be seen on the waters edge and they are often joined by other ducks and sometimes Brent Geese.

Groups of Wigeon can be seen flying over the Bay, with their conspicuous white wing panels.

As the tide come up the shore birds move closer and with provide some spectacular views before they move of the roost at Shellness at high tide. Regular updates on the site can be found on Planet Thanet

No comments: