Saturday, 1 November 2014

1st - 3rd November 2014

Monday, 3rd November: A wet and fairly miserable morning, dull and overcast with heavy rain - easing off somewhat later - and a fresh SW wind 3-4.
Selsey Bill: Very quiet - just a few Gannets and a couple of Great Crested Grebes west and 30+ Turnstones on the beach. (BFF)

Pagham Spit: A Short-eared Owl flew over the spit this afternoon at 3pm, just after the rain stopped, seen from Church Norton. (SR)
Medmerry: West Sands to the breach - A female Merlin was sheltering in the rocks before shooting off in pursuit of a Meadow Pipit away over the caravans. Also 2 female Eider were seeing the hide tide out in the breach, and there were 40 Ringed Plover, 8 Grey Plover, 4 Dunlin and a Curlew roosting on the pools. (AH)
Eider (above) & Ringed Plover and Dunlin at Medmerry (AH)
Ferry Pool: There were still 18 Avocet present this morning, though the only other waders - despite the big tide - were 4 Black-tailed Godwits. Also at least 40 Shoveler and a dozen Teal were on the pool and 60 Wigeon were on the grass. (AH)
Avocets (above) & Shoveler on the Ferry (AH)
Sunday, 2nd November: A taste of proper autumn this morning; grey skies, rain at times, a strong south-westerly wind gusting almost to gale force and much cooler temperatures. Some late news has now been added to yesterday's blog of a Water Pipit flying over the North Wall.
A Purple Sandpiper past the Bill this morning was the fourth peninsula year-tick in eight days (the others being Great Grey Shrike, Pallas's Warbler and - surprisingly - Bearded Tit), taking the total to 206 species seen.

Selsey Bill (0645 - 1000hrs):  Cloud, showers, SW6-7.  (Obs: SH/PB/AGB/JA/AH)  Highlights on this blustery morning were a Bonxie and a Purple Sandpiper......
Red-throated Diver - 2W
Great Crested Grebe - 3W, 1 os
Gannet - 149W, 200 + os
Brent Goose  30W
Eider - 3w
R/b Merganser - 3E, 3W
Common Scoter - 2E, 4W
Dunlin - 1W
Purple Sandpiper - 1W
Great Skua - 1W
Med Gull - 3W, 3 os
Kittiwake - 8W
Auk sp - 8W
(1145-1245) (SH)
Great Crested Grebe - 8W
Gannet - 1W
Brent Goose - 14W
Red-breasted Merganser - 4W, 3os
Arctic Skua - 1os
Mediterranean Gull - 2E
Kittiwake - 2W
This afternoon there was a Wheatear present. (SR)
Gannet (above) & Mediterranean Gull at the Bill (AH)

East side of the harbour: The Snow Bunting was again present around the sea-defence works near the caravan park, and the Spoonbill was feeding in the harbour mouth. Also a Stonechat and 2 Snipe seen. The Bar-tailed Godwit that was seen a few weeks ago with a broken leg would seem to have lost it completely now, but appears okay and able to feed. (S&SaH)

One-legged Bar-tailed Godwit in the harbour (SH)

Ferry Pool: The Avocet flock has increased again - a total of 18 birds were present this morning. (AH) 

Saturday, 1st November: A bit of rain overnight and into the morning, but with the prospect of a generally dry day with cloud, sunshine and a moderate WSW wind 3-4. As we enter the new month the temperatures are still unseasonably high, though it is not due last much longer......

Selsey Bill: (0650-9000hrs) (JA/SH/AH/SR/SdeH)
Great Northern Diver - 2os
Great Crested Grebe - 2W, 2os
Gannet - 20W, 3E
Brent Goose - 71W, 1E
Common Scoter - 2E
Red-breasted Merganser - 13W
Sparrowhawk - 2p
Dunlin - 1W
Mediterranean Gull - 5W
Razorbill - 14W
auk sp - 20W
Wood Pigeon - 1000+ SW
Stock Dove - 23SW
Meadow Pipit - 4W
Pied Wagtail - 6W, 3p
Church Norton: Very quiet - best bird was the Ruddy Shelduck over the harbour, whilst there were also one or two Goldcrests and Chiffchaffs along the Severals and around the hide, 3 Great Spotted Woodpeckers in the oak copse and a few Teal along the creek by the horse's field. (S&SaH/AH) The Spoonbill was in the harbour again later in the day. (DM)
Goldcrest (above) & Teal at Church Norton (AH)
Spoonbill & Curlew from Church Norton (DM)
Ferry Pool: The Avocet flock had grown to 14 this morning, and a Snipe was at the back, plus the usual Lapwing, Shoveler and Teal were present. (AH)

Avocets on the Ferry (AH)
North Wall: The Short-eared Owl was again present late afternoon and 2 Bearded Tits were also noted (BI). At 1515hrs a Water Pipit flew over; also a Water Rail present and a number of Black-tailed Godwits, one with a deformed bill (J-P Charteris) ( note: The Black-tailed Godwit is just showing the rhynchokinesis thing their bills do by the way, rather than having a deformed bill. Normally happens under the mud when they're feeding, to help them grip food, but their bills also flex when they yawn! (J-PC).

Water Pipit flying over the North Wall, Water Rail and Black-tailed Godwit with deformed bill 
(J-P Charteris)

Medmerry: Easton Lane west - A Black Redstart was on the brick and flint barn this morning, with a Chiffchaff nearby. There were also 3 Stonechats, 20+ Yellowhammers and 30+ Meadow Pipits along the path, plus a couple of Clouded Yellows. A Common Sandpiper was in the tidal area by the poplars, along with a Curlew and 30 Teal and a huge flock of Starlings was flying around over Marsh Farm. (AH)

Black Redstart (above), Yellowhammer & Clouded Yellow at Medmerry (AH)

Long Pool: There were 3 Greenshank along Ferry Channel late this afternoon, along with 20 Redshank and a couple of Grey Plovers. The Water Rail was squealing in the far corner of the Small Pool, and 600-700 Brent Geese were out feeding on the cereal crops along the west side. (AH) 

Greenshank in Ferry Channel (above) & Brent Geese on the west side (AH)

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