After a week away on the Isles of Scilly followed by a few days of quite awful weather, it was good to have a decent day to get out and about. I had intended to walk the cliff top to Kingsdown and back, but hesitated when I heard that a Desert Wheatear was on show at Reculver and a Red-rumped Swallow was gracing Dungeness with its presence. On reflection, as I'd seen three of the former and at least six of the latter in Kent I decided not to change my plans. I set out more in hope than expectation but at least the weather was warm enough to walk in shirt sleeves with no coat. A male Peregrine sped by, and this immediately lifted my spirits.
There were a few butterflies about, and after watching five Red Admirals fly by without pausing I was thrilled to see this Clouded Yellow land within a few yards of me. It's been a good year for this migrant butterfly, and it is pleasing that the weather is mild enough for them still to be flying in November. In addition to the butterflies I also saw two species of migrant moths, a Rusty-dot Pearl and a Silver Y.
No rare wheatears or swallows, but a few Stonechats were in evidence as they pursued their insect prey from the tops of bushes at Hope Point, along the Kingsdown Lees and the undercliff.
AT Kingsdown Undercliff I searched for a Black Redstart, without luck, but there were several Robins defending territories and chasing each other around. I was high tide and and a group of Rock pipits were feeding around the puddles at the end of the foot path. On appeared paler than the others, but they were jumpy and I didn't manage a picture. At this time of year it is normally quite difficult to separate the Scandinavian race. litorralis from the nominate race, petrusus that breeds here. I will certainly have another look at this group of pipits in the near future.