Friday, 11 October 2013

11th - 13th October 2013

Sunday, 13th October: Overcast and dull with light drizzle, quickly turning to persistent rain. Conditions actually looked reasonable at first for something decent to turn up, but no such luck, at time of writing anyway.... though just picked up news (per RBA) of a Ring Ouzel at last - in a hedge near Owl Copse (Pagham North Wall) at 1145hrs.

Selsey Bill 0715-1000hrs: Overcast, drizzle, rain. W3-4  (Obs: SH et al)
Gannet - 3E, 32W

Brent Goose - 11E, 6W
Shelduck - 3W
Garganey - 1W
Common Scoter - 9E, 1W
Red-throated Diver - 1E
Turnstone - 35 ob
Auk sp - 3W
Guillemot - 2W
Sandwich Tern - 1E
Swallow - 8W

House Martin - 8
Pied Wagtail - 1 ob

Grey Wagtail - 1 ob
Linnet - 5N

Pagham Hbr: Church Norton: Very quiet in the heavy drizzle and strong wind - up to 20 Song Thrushes along the west side, and a few Goldcrests and Chiffchaffs around the churchyard was the 'highlight' before the rain increased and I went home! (AH). Later, a walk up to the beach in the drizzle at 5pm produced a female-type Marsh Harrier heading westwards and a Greenshank over calling (AH).
North Wall: Two Water Rails, 2 Spotted Redshanks, singles of Ruff and Snipe, a Stonechat, 4 Chiffchaffs and 20+ Reed Buntings (S&SaH)  Later, a Ring Ouzel reported in the hedge near Owl copse (per RBA).  

The Ruff at the North wall (Breech Pool) (photo: Sam Hill)

Saturday, 12th October: Sunshine and cloud but still with a blustery force 5 north-easterly persisting.  An early report from Sam Hill watching at Selsey Bill.... highlights were a Short-eared Owl in from the sea, a Brambling N overhead and an Arctic Skua passing through. Also a report from C&ME of a Black Redstart at Greenlease Farm, Church Norton. Fuller details will appear later. (I've also just seen a report of literally hundreds of Ring Ouzels in East Sussex.... someone please find one on the Peninsula!!)

Selsey Bill:0715-1030hrs:  Sun and cloud. NE4-5   (Obs: SH, PM et al)
Gannet - 15E, 20W & 35 os
Brent Goose - 1E, 293W
Wigeon - 1W
Teal - 2E
Shoveler - 2E
Common Scoter - 43E, 2W & 2 os
Ringed Plover - 1 ob
Auk sp  - 2E, 4W
Razorbill - 5E
Sparrowhawk - 1 p
Short-eared Owl - 1N from sea
Arctic Skua - 1E
Med Gull - 2E. 4W
Kittiwake - 1E
Sandwich Tern - 1E, 4W
Redwing - 2N
House Martin - 4E
Swallow - 12E
Wheatear - 1 ob
Meadow Pipit - 40E
Linnet - 24N
Brambling - 1 N
East beach pond: 1 Chiffchaff; lots of Starling activity but no Rosy Starling.

Spent a pleasant morning at East Head, and though there was no sign of the Spoonbill, there were plenty of other birds around - highlights being a Short-Eared Owl in off the sea, a drake Common Scoter and a Red-breasted Merganser off the northern end, 2+ Wheatears, a Stonechat, 10+ Reed Buntings, a Spotted Redshank, 12 Golden Plovers, and dozens of Skylarks, Linnets and Meadow Pipits around. It was also pleasing to see quite a large number of juvenile Brent Geese amongst the several hundred present (AH).

 Adult and juvenile Brent Geese, and Wheatear at East Head (photos: Andy House)

At Church Norton, a Black Redstart was present at Greenlease farm, on the roof of a building behind the Clock Tower - see pic (C&J Moore, C&M Eames)
Black Redstart, Greenlease farm Church Norton (photo: Juliet Moore)

Friday, 11th October: Bright and breezy this morning, with a cool wind N/NE 5-6, but cloudy and dull with rain by early afternoon. The best option seemed a seawatch so I headed for the Bill, where there was some light movement including a couple of late Yellow Wagtails, one of which showed well on the playing field - until Sarah produced her camera! The blustery conditions made things very difficult for finding passerines, then things went downhill as the rain set in, making for a gloomy finish to the day.

Selsey Bill (0725-1030hrs): Sunny with cloud, windy N/NE 5-6 - and thick smoke at times due to the bonfire in Bill House garden!
Gannet - 5E, 29W & 40 fishing os
Brent Goose - 84W
Shelduck - 6W
Wigeon - 5E, 46W
Teal - 2E, 3W
Common Scoter - 5E, 15W
Sanderling - 8W
Curlew - 1W
Auk Sp - 7W
Med Gull - 6W
Sandwich Tern - 2E
Swallow - 8 S/E
House Martin - 2E
Meadow Pipit - 30N
Yellow Wagtail - 2E (1 on playing field for a while)
Pied/alba Wagtail - 15E
Chiffchaff - 3 gardens
Linnet - 24E
Goldfinch - 58E
Siskin - 2E amongst mixed finch flock

Flock of Brent Geese heading west off the Bill (photo: A. House)

Pagham Hbr: Church Norton: Hard going in the strong north-easterly; 3 or 4 Chiffchaffs, up to 8 Song Thrushes, 2 Green Woodpeckers and 2 Jays around the churchyard, the 3 Stonechats on the beach, 8 Reed Buntings, 30 Meadow Pipits, 40 Linnets and 80 Goldfinches over east, and 40 Red-legged Partridges and a Kestrel on Greenlease Farm (AH).

Kestrel and Red-legged Partridges at Greenlease Farm (photos: A. House). You know it's a slow news day when Red-legs feature prominently in the day's write-up!
Just to confirm nothing really at East beach pond Selsey, apart from 4 Chiffchaffs.  One Chiff singing in the rain in my garden this afternoon and one in a neighbour's garden - I'm longing to go out again but it's pouring down! (SR). At Northcommon Farm it was a similar situation with just a couple of Chiffchaffs in the wind-battered trees to show for my efforts (OM).
A visit to West Wittering/Snowhill Marsh was cut short when the rain set in, but I could find no trace of the Spoonbill in my brief look (OM).

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