Folkestone & Hythe Birds

and other natural history

Last updated: 25th May
The 2017 area bird year list is 174 species (173 species at the same time last year)

25th - A Turnstone and 29 Ringed Plovers flew east past Samphire Hoe, where a Yellow Wagtail flew in off the sea and a Common Sandpiper and a Reed Warbler were also seen. A Little Egret, a Hobby and 2 Grey Partridges at Donkey Street (Ian Roberts).


7 Diamond-back Moths at Horn Street, where The Sycamore, White-point and Nematopogon metaxella (Buff Long-horn) were new for the year. A Silver Y and 6 Diamond-back Moths at Seabrook, where Cream-bordered Green Pea was new. 3 Silver Ys and 10 Diamond-back Moths at Hythe, where Pseudargyrotoza conwagana (Yellow-spot Twist), Argyresthia cupressella (Cypress Tip Moth) and Hedya pruniana (Plum Tortrix) were new, as were Eupoecilia ambiguella (Vine Moth) and Scoparia pyralella (Meadow Grey) at Samphire Hoe and Mother Shipton at Donkey Street and Hythe Roughs. The first Brown Argus was also noted at Hythe Roughs (Ian Roberts).


24th - A superb adult Long-tailed Skua was seen close inshore off Hythe and later flying east past Mill Point this evening. 2 Greenshank and 2 Common Sandpipers at Donkey Street (Ian Roberts / Brian Harper). 3 Common Sandpipers at Samphire Hoe (Steve Cutt). A Wheatear, a Hobby and a Little Owl at Church Hougham (Mark Kennett).


14 Diamond-back Moths at Horn Street, where Pretty Chalk Carpet, The Flame, Mottled Rustic, Celypha striana (Barred Marble) and Myelois circumvoluta (Thistle Ermine) were new for the year. A Silver Y and 9 Diamond-back Moths at Seabrook, where Puss Moth was new for the year (Paul Howe). A Rusty-dot Pearl, 6 Silver Ys and 6 Diamond-back Moths at Hythe (Ian Roberts). 

Greenshanks at Donkey Street

(Ian Roberts)

Yellowhammer at Donkey Street

(Brian Harper)

Common Sandpiper at Botolph's Bridge (Brian Harper)

House Martins at traditional cliff nest at Samphire Hoe (Andy Luckhurst)

Pretty Chalk Carpet at Horn Street

(Paul Howe)

Puss Moth at Seabrook
(Paul Howe)

Bird's Wing at Horn Street

(Paul Howe)

Elephant Hawk-moth at Horn Street

(Paul Howe)

23rd - A Red Kite and a Hobby flew over Horn Street (Paul Howe). A Ringed Plover, 2 Whimbrel and 5 Turnstone flew past Samphire Hoe (Ian Roberts). A Hobby flew over Round Hill (Kevin Harding).


2 Silver Ys and 3 Diamond-back Moths at Horn Street, where Elephant Hawk-moth, Bird's Wing and Snout were new for the year, also a Silver Y at Seabrook (Paul Howe) 5 Diamond-back Moths at Hythe (Ian Roberts). 


22nd - 2 Red Kites flew north over Cheriton (Dale Gibson). A Manx Shearwater, 5 Dunlin, 5 Oystercatchers and 8 Whimbrel flew past Samphire Hoe, also 8 Swifts arrived in off the sea (Steve Cutt). A male Peregrine over Horn Street (Paul Howe).


Agrotera nemoralis (Beautiful Pearl) at Heane Wood was new for the year (Kevin Button). 2 Silver Ys and 6 Diamond-back Moths at Hythe, where Eyed Hawk-moth and Willow Beauty were new for the year (Ian Roberts). A Silver Y and 9 Diamond-back Moths at Seabrook, whilst at Horn Street additions to the year list included Grey Pug, Ethmia quadrillella (Comfrey Ermel) and Eupoecilia angustana (Marbled Conch) (Paul Howe). Mullein Wave at Samphire Hoe was also new for the year (Paul Holt).

Eupoecliia angustana at Horn Street

(Paul Howe)

Ethmia quadrillella at Horn Street

(Paul Howe)

White-banded Carpet at Heane Wood (Ian Roberts)

Silver-ground Carpet at Heane Wood (Ian Roberts)

21st - 25 Swifts at Seabrook (Paul Howe).


A Diamond-back Moth and 4 Silver Y at Seabrook, where Agonopterix scopariella (Broom Flat-body) was new for the year and Setaceous Hebrew Character, Aethes smeathmanniana (Yarrow Conch), Lathronympha strigana (Red Piercer) and Phycitodes binaevella (Ermine Knot-horn) were new for the year at Horn Street (Paul Howe). White-banded Carpet, Grey Birch, Satin Lutestring, Peach Blossom, Silver-ground Carpet, Foxglove Pug and Scalloped Hazel were amongst several additions to the year list at Heane Wood. Privet Hawk-moth at Cheriton was also new (Brian Harper / Ian Roberts).  

20th - A Glaucous Gull at Hythe (Sean McMinn).


The Lychnis and Scrobipalpa costella (Winter Groundling) at Horn Street were new for the year (Paul Howe), as was Anthophila fabriciana (Common Nettle-tap) at West Hythe (Ian Roberts). 


19th - A Yellow Wagtail, a Sand Martin and 13 Swallows flew in off the sea at Samphire Hoe (Steve Cutt / Ian Roberts).


A Dark Sword-grass and a Silver Y at Cheriton (Brian Harper). 4 Silver Ys at Seabrook (Paul Howe). A Silver Y at Hythe (Ian Roberts).


18th - A Yellow Wagtail and 6 Swallows flew in off the sea at Samphire Hoe, also 3 Whimbrel flew east and a Shag was seen offshore (Ian Roberts).

Common Marbled Carpet at Hythe was new for the year (Ian Roberts).

Glaucous Gull at Hythe (Sean McMinn)

17th - 6 Common Crossbills flew over Samphire Hoe (Steve Cutt).


Ruby Tiger and The Shears at Horn Street (Paul Howe) and Peppered Moth at Lympne (Lucy Carden) were new for the year.


16th - A Sand Martin, a Grey Partridge, 6 Swifts, 6 Swallows and 8 House Martins at Abbotscliffe (Mark Kennett).


A Dusky Hook-tip and a Diamond-back Moth at Horn Street, where Alder Moth, Dingy Shell, Small Angle Shades and Freyer's Pug were new for the year.  A Diamond-back Moth at Seabrook where Crambus lathoniellus (Hook-streaked Grass-veneer) was new for the year (Paul Howe).  A Silver Y and a Diamond-back Moth at Cheriton (Brian Harper). A Diamond-back Moth at Hythe, where Light Emerald, Large Yellow Underwing and  Cydia pomonella (Codling Moth) were new for the year (Ian Roberts).

Dusky Hook-tip at Horn Street

(Paul Howe)

Alder Moth at Horn Street

(Paul Howe)

Small Angle Shades at Horn Street

(Paul Howe)

Light Feathered Rustic at Seabrook

(Paul Howe)

15th - The first Spotted Flycatcher of the year at Brockhill CP (Paul Trodd). A Red Kite flew over Kiln Wood. An Arctic Skua, a Whimbrel and 5 Manx Shearwaters flew past Samphire Hoe, where 3 Swifts and 10 Swallows arrived in off the sea and 2 Wheatears were seen (Ian Roberts / Steve Cutt / Phil Smith).


A good selection of butterflies at Samphire Hoe included Adonis, Common, Small and Holly Blue, Clouded Yellow, Green Hairstreak, Dingy Skipper and Small Heath (Phil Smith). 3 Diamond-back Moths and 4 Silver Ys at Seabrook and a Diamond-back Moth at Horn Street, where May Highflyer was new for the year (Paul Howe).


14th - A Willow Warbler and a Black Redstart at Samphire Hoe, where at Whimbrel and 7 Dunlin flew east (Ian Roberts).


A Diamond-back Moth at Seabrook (Paul Howe).


13th - A Great Skua, 3 Pomarine Skuas, 4 Arctic Skuas, 6 Little Terns, 16 Whimbrel and 281 Common/Arctic Terns flew east past Samphire Hoe, also a Reed Warbler and 2 Willow Warblers there (Martin Collins / Phil Smith / Paul Holt / Ian Roberts). A Common Sandpiper at Seabrook (Paul Howe).


The first Small Blue of the year at Samphire Hoe (Paul Holt).


12th - A Common Sandpiper at the Hythe Redoubt, a Corn Bunting and 4 Yellow Wagtails on Donkey Street, 2 Grey Partridges and 2 Cuckoos at Botolph's Bridge Road and a Wheatear, a Cuckoo and a Dunlin at Hythe Ranges, where 3 Swallows flew in off the sea (Brian Harper / Ian Roberts). An Oystercatcher and 3 Red-breasted Mergansers flew east past Samphire Hoe (Martin Collins).


Coleophora lutipennella (Common Oak-case Bearer) at Hythe Ranges and Psychoides filicivora (Fern Smut) at Hythe were new for the year (Ian Roberts), as were Sharp-angled Peacock at Seabrook and Blood-vein at Horn Street (Paul Howe). A Four-spotted Chaser at Donkey Street (Brian Harper). 


11th - 2 Black-throated Divers, 3 Great Skuas, a flock of 6 Pomarine Skuas (at 08:58), 6 Arctic Skuas, 7 Manx Shearwaters, 18 Little Terns, 20 Whimbrel and 527 Common/Arctic Terns flew east past Samphire Hoe (Steve Cutt / Ian Roberts).


A Silver Y at Cheriton, where Green Carpet was new for the year (Brian Harper).


10th - A Marsh Harrier flew north over Horn Street and a Cuckoo was calling at Seabrook (Paul Howe).


Additions to the moth year list, which has now overtaken last year's, included Clouded-bordered Brindle at Seabrook (Paul Howe) and Carpatolechia proximella (Black-speckled Groundling), Poplar Lutestring, The Seraphim, Sallow Kitten and Brown Silver-line at Folks' Wood (Brian Harper / Ian Roberts).


9th - 7 Red Kites flew west at Samphire Hoe, a Bar-tailed Godwit, a flock of 6 Manx Shearwaters and 10 Whimbrel flew east, 293 Sandwich Terns were feeding offshore and a Yellow Wagtail, 2 Swifts and 27 Swallows flew in off the sea, whilst a Wheatear and a House Sparrow were also noted there (Steve Cutt / Ian Roberts). A Green Sandpiper, a Little Egret, a Cuckoo, 2 Corn Buntings and 2 Yellow Wagtails at Donkey Street and a Common Sandpiper at Nickolls Quarry (Brian Harper). A Cuckoo at Seabrook (Paul Howe / Martin Whybrow).


There were a number of additions to the moth year list including Vine's Rustic at Seabrook, Figure of Eighty, The Nutmeg, The Campion and The Cinnabar at Seabrook (Paul Howe) and Rustic Shoulder-knot at Cheriton (Brian Harper).


8th - An Arctic Skua, a Red-breasted Merganser, a Mute Swan, 2 Sanderling, 2 Red-throated Divers, 8 Manx Shearwaters, 41 Whimbrel, 83 Common/Arctic Terns and c.150 Black-tailed Godwits east past Samphire Hoe (Steve Cutt / Phil Smith / Ian Roberts). A female Marsh Harrier at Nickolls Quarry. 2 Corn Buntings and 3 Yellow Wagtails at Donkey Street (Brian Harper). Single Cuckoos at Palmarsh (Jamie Tomsett) and Seabrook (Martin Whybrow).


Toadflax Brocade, Buff-tip and The Fern were new for the year at Cheriton (Brian Harper), as were Pyrausta despicata (Straw-barred Pearl) and The Fern at Horn Street and Phtheochroa rugosana (Rough-winged Conch), Caloptilia alchimiella (Yellow-triangle Slender), Maiden's Blush, Small White Wave, Tawny-barred Angle and Poplar Hawk-moth at Seabrook, whilst 2 further Gravitarmata margarotana (Pine Cone Moth) were of note there (Paul Howe). A Harbour Porpoise off Samphire Hoe, also 2 Dew Moths there and Light Feathered Rustic was new for the year at Hythe (Ian Roberts). The first Adonis Blue at Round Hill, Folkestone (Alfie Gay).

Cuckoo at Donkey Street

(Brian Harper)

Corn Bunting at Donkey Street

(Brian Harper)

Yellow Wagtail at Donkey Street

(Brian Harper)

Red Kite at Cheriton

(Brian Harper)

Bordered Straw at Seabrook

(Paul Howe)

White Ermine at Horn Street

(Paul Howe)

Tawny-barred Angle at Seabrook (Paul Howe)

Phtheochroa rugosana at Seabrook (Paul Howe)
7th -  A Tree Pipit flew in off the sea at Abbotscliffe (Marcus Lawson). 2 Manx Shearwaters, 5 Arctic Skuas, 6 Bar-tailed Godwits and 56 Whimbrel flew past Samphire Hoe, also a Yellow Wagtail, a Wheatear and 3 Swallows there (Martin Collins / Steve Cutt / Mark Kennett / Ian Roberts).

A decent night in the moth traps saw 17 macros and 7 micros added to the year list, including Silver Y, The Rivulet. Mottled Pug and Pale Prominent at Seabrook (Paul Howe), Light Brocade and Tachystola acroxantha (Ruddy Streak) at Cheriton, Broad-barred White at Hythe and Syndemis musculana (Dark-barred Twist), Epinotia immundana (Common Birch Bell), Scalloped Hook-tip, Pebble Hook-tip, Pale Prominent, Iron Prominent, Coxcomb Prominent and Orange Footman at Heane Wood (Brian Harper / Ian Roberts). A Clouded Yellow at Samphire Hoe (Martin Collins / Ian Roberts) and 2 Dew Moths, 4 Walls and 5 Dingy Skippers at Abbotscliffe (Marcus Lawson) were also of note.

6th - A Red Kite flew over Cheriton and a Purple Sandpiper at Hythe (Brian Harper). 6 Arctic Skuas, 71 Whimbrel and 360 Sandwich Terns flew east past Samphire Hoe, also a Redpoll, a Yellow Wagtail and 2 Swallows flew in off the sea there (Steve Cutt / Ian Roberts).

Bordered StrawTawny Pinion and Knot Grass at Seabrook and Sandy Carpet, Clouded Border and White Ermine at Horn Street were new for the year, also a Hairy Dragonfly at the latter site (Paul Howe). Lime Hawk-moth at Cheriton was new for the year, also a Hare at Botolph's Bridge (Brian Harper).


5th - A Little Ringed Plover at Nickolls Quarry and 2 Purple Sandpipers at Hythe (Brian Harper). A Manx Shearwater, a Brent Goose and 27 Whimbrel flew east past Samphire Hoe and a Siskin and a Yellow Wagtail flew over (Steve Cutt / Ian Roberts). 2 Wigeon off Hythe and 4 Little Terns flew east (Ian Roberts). 2 Swifts at Hythe (Glenn Tutton).

Small Phoenix at Horn Street and Pseudoswammerdamia combinella (Copper-tipped Ermel) at Seabrook were new for the year (Paul Howe), as was The Spectacle at Cheriton (Brian Harper).

4th - A Wheatear at Samphire Hoe and 2 Whimbrel flew east (Ian Roberts / Brian Blackman).

Pale Tussock, Garden Carpet and Small Copper at Horn Street were new for the year (Paul Howe). A Harbour Porpoise off Samphire Hoe (Ian Roberts / Brian Blackman).

3rd - A Swift, a Sand Martin, 2 Hobbies, 17 House Martins and 85 Swallows flew in off the sea at Samphire Hoe, also a Ring Ouzel, a Reed Warbler, a Black Redstart and 2 Wheatears there (Steve Cutt / Ian Roberts). A Purple Sandpiper still at Battery Point (Brian Harper). A Cuckoo at Hythe Ranges (Jamie Tomsett).

Small Dusty Wave at Hythe was new for the year (per Paul Howe). A Brimstone at Sandling was also of note (Brian Harper).

2nd - 6 Manx Shearwaters, 8 Great Skuas, 15 Whimbrel and 70 Common Scoter flew past Samphire Hoe, also 9 Wheatears there (Ian Roberts / Mark Varley). A Purple Sandpiper still at Twiss Road, Hythe and 9 Manx Shearwaters flew past Mill Point (Brian Harper).

Elachista rufocinerea (Red-brindled Dwarf) at Horn Street was new for the year (Paul Howe).

1st - A Willow Warbler and 13 Wheatears at Samphire Hoe (Phil Smith / Ian Roberts). Further Wheatears at Hythe, Willop Outfall, Donkey Street (2), Battery Point (2) and Botolph's Bridge (4), giving a day total of 13 (Brian Harper).

The first Dingy Skipper and Wall butterflies at Samphire Hoe, also a Green Hairstreak there and a Dew Moth larva (Phil Smith / Paul Holt).

January and April 2018 sightings have been archived - click on the links for a review of the bird sightings or the moth, butterfly and other sightings for the year to date.

The 2017 Folkestone & Hythe Bird Report and 2017 Non-avian report are available as free downloads (click on the links to open).