Sculthorpe Marsh Harrier in Kent

Study bird sighted on Isle of Sheppey

Green Tagged Marsh Harrier
Photo © Phil Haynes

The first long-distance report of a marsh harrier tagged on the nest at Sculthorpe Moor has come from Kent. The sighting was at the end of October on the Isle of Sheppey, on the Thames Estuary, over 160 km away.

Individual AD was one of the first brood to have unique green wing tags fitted by Trust volunteer and bird ringer Phil Littler in the 2011 season and therefore is one of the pioneer subjects in the new study of marsh harrier dispersal and migration from the Wensum Valley in Norfolk.

AD was photographed on Sheppey by Phil Haynes, of the Swale Wader Group, which has conducted a similar study of Sheppey marsh harrier nestlings since 2009.

harrier_link_104Wensum Valley marsh harriers have lime green wing tags with two numbers or a letter and a number in white. Please report all sightings – click on the link (left).

Marsh harriers with white wing tags and two black digits are from Sheppey or nearby in Kent, and sightings reports can be made here.

To identify and report sightings of any other colour-tagged marsh harriers, visit the European Colour-Ring Birding website’s excellent search tool for field observers by clicking here.

Read about how the Wensum Valley marsh harrier wing tagging project got off the ground here.

One Response to Sculthorpe Marsh Harrier in Kent

  1. I believe I saw a marsh harrier near the mill in Hunton on Wednesday 18th marsh. I am not a particularly knowledgeable bird watcher but I always like to identify anything that I see that is unusual. This bird was a large bird of prey, much bigger than a kestrel or sparrow hawk, and had a distinctive white cape. I got two good sightings and only just missed getting a photograph.