Wednesday, 13 May 2015

13th - 15th May 2015

Friday, 15th May: Bright with sunshine and cloud and a fairly brisk N to NW wind; not the most enticing of conditions then for sea-watching...! But hey-ho, it just goes to show you can never safely predict what will happen.... JA was sat alone at the Bill when he logged the most interesting watch of the week including a Nightjar which bizarrely spent half an hour offshore at close range!

Selsey Bill (0515-0930hrs): Cloud/sun, NE4. Bird of the day was a Nightjar seen coming in off the sea at 6.45am, which spent nearly half an hour hawking low over the sea before finally heading inland to the east. Also, a Hobby came in off the sea at 6.00am (JA) Otherwise there were a couple of Arctic Skuas and a steady, if modest stream of Gannets, Sandwich Terns and a few Common Terns. (JA/IP/AH) Full log...
Great Northern Diver - 2os
Great Crested Grebe - 1E
Fulmar - 6W
Gannet - 112E, 16W
Manx Shearwater - 2W
Common Scoter - 12E
Hobby - 1N (0556hrs)
Guillemot - 1W
Auk sp - 47W
Nightjar - 1N (0645-see above)
Arctic Skua - 2E (l/p)
Little Tern - 2E
Common Tern - 16E
Commic Tern - 16E
Sandwich Tern - 41E, 6os
Kittiwake - 4E
Mediterranean Gull - 1E
Yellow Wagtail - 1N
Swift - 12N
Swallow - 2N
Additional: 1600-1715hrs: (JA) SW4
Gannet - 2E
Fulmar - 1W
Little Tern - 4os
Common Tern - 1os
Sandwich tern - 22os
Swallow - 3N

North Wall: There was a Greenshank and 35 Black-tailed Godwits on the Breech Pool at high tide this morning, and a Cuckoo was in the Slipe Field. (PC)

Church Norton: A Spoonbill was roosting near Tern Island, and c10 Common Terns and Black-headed Gulls were starting to take an interest in the island. There were also half a dozen Sandwich Terns and Turnstones along the metalwork and similar numbers of Little Terns feeding well offshore. 
Not much on the land - the Cuckoo called intermittently, and one or two Sedge Warblers, Whitethroats and Reed Buntings popped there heads up along the Severals. (AH)

Whitethroat (above), Sedge Warbler & Reed Bunting at Church Norton (AH)

Sidlesham: A pair of Bullfinches were in our lane on the west of the village this morning. Also, a Jay there and a Cuckoo heard. (AH)

Ferry Pool: The flock of c120 Black-tailed Godwits was still present, along with four Gadwall and three Avocets. (AH)

Black-tailed Godwits at the Ferry (AH)

Medmerry: Breach - The two Corn Buntings were still present, and there were two Gadwall and two Common Terns on the pools, but no waders at all. (AH)

Corn Bunting (above) & Gadwall at Medmerry (AH)

Porthole Farm - This evening a Yellow Wagtail was on the settling tanks with several Reed Buntings and Pied Wagtails, a pair of Yellowhammers were in the bushes and there were 1000+ hirundines again, pretty evenly split between House Martins and swallows, plus the odd Swift. Also, a Shelduck was on the field by the barn. (AH)

Yellow Wagtail (above), House Martin & Swallow at Porthole Farm (AH)

Thursday, 14th May: What a contrast to yesterday! A cold morning with a strong ESE wind, initially just cloudy but becoming rainy and only getting worse from there....
and just to cheer you all up, the following message was received from Tony Marr (on the Western Isles) yesterday: I made an evening visit to Mangersta today and did a sea-watch (from 1600-2100): Pomarine Skua – 198 N (largest flock: 63). (BAEM).  (Aaagh! So that's where they are! OM)

Selsey Bill (0645-1215hrs)Dull, cloudy, then heavy rain, wind ESE 6 (Obs: OM/IB/AH/KF)
Somehow I managed to cover five and a half hours, (although the latter half of it was from the car) and I was joined by only three other brave souls during the morning. It proved to be a Skua-less experience again, although a few terns were moving, notably over 100 Sandwich Terns, but otherwise it was a long ordeal with few highlights (OM). Log below...
Great Northern Diver - at least 2 os
Fulmar - 3E, 2W
Gannet - 58E, 12W
Shelduck - 2 p
Common Scoter - 18E
Auk sp - 5W
Dunlin - 3E
Sanderling - 4E
Little Tern - 7E
Common Tern - 33E
Sandwich Tern - 107E
Kittiwake - 1E
Swallow - 6N
Chiffchaff - 1 gardens
Additional 1710-1810hrs: WSW3, cloudy, (JA} 
Great Northern Diver - 1os
Gannet - 15E, 50W
Mallard - 1E
Sandwich Tern - 5E, 4os
Arctic Tern - 2E
Common Tern - 1os
Razorbill - 1E
Swift - 1N

Gannets (above), Sandwich Tern, Common Scoter, Fulmar & Turnstone at Selsey Bill (AH)

Ferry Pool: As many as 120 Black-tailed Godwits were on the pool at hight tide, plus five Avocets, four Gadwall and 25 Shelduck. (AH)

Black-tailed Godwits & Avocet on the Ferry (AH)

Church Norton: Unsurprisingly dire in the conditions - a couple of Common Terns and Whimbrel, along with 30 or so Dunlin in the harbour, the Cuckoo calling a couple of times from the Priory and a pair of Red-legged Partridges behind the churchyard was really about it. (AH)

Red-legged Partridge at Church Norton (AH)

Wednesday, 13th May: A beautiful spring morning, starting with a light N breeze soon veering to a favourable ESE direction with plenty of sun. We could have done with some of this a fortnight ago, as it would appear that the bulk of migration is mostly done.....although when it comes to numbers, some might argue it has barely begun!

Selsey Bill (0640 - 1340hrs): Sunny, bright, N1-2 then ESE2-3: Very quiet - a few Common Scoter and Sanderling east and a couple of Bar-tailed Godwits  being the only birds of note.  (Obs: OM/PC/AH/DSh/DF et al) A seven hour stint in the hope of a few Poms or at least a decent bit of passage was not rewarded, even though the conditions looked good....... some people are on the pitch, they think it's all over, it is now (well, perhaps!)   Log below.....
Great Northern Diver - still 4 os (s/plum)
Fulmar - 1W
Gannet - 19E, 6W
Common Scoter - 53E
Turnstone - 13E
Sanderling - 13E
Bar-tailed Godwit - 2E
Little Tern - 2os
Common Tern - 5E, 9W, 25os
Commic Tern - 9E
Sandwich Tern - 54E, 10os
Swallow - 7N

A bit of boredom setting in at the Bill...whilst scanning around for birds, the Moon was the best I could find, and this lazy Common Tern promptly went to sleep on a green triangle rather than migrate! (OM)

Ferry Pool: Similarly quiet - the only waders present were single Redshank and Lapwing, and wildfowl were represented by 25 Shelduck and a half dozen Gadwall. (OM/AH) Also seen later in the morning were a Greenshank, three Avocets and 76 Blck-tailed Godwits. (MD)
A Red Kite went north over the Visitor Centre at 12.30. (PH)

Church Norton: Early on the Cuckoo was on the edge of Priory Wood, and a few Whitethroats and Chiffchaffs were making themselves known. Still three or four Whimbrel in the harbour, and about ten Little Terns and a few Common and Sandwich Terns were offshore. (AH)

Whitethroat at Church Norton (AH)

Later in the morning there were at least two Spotted Flycatchers around the churchyard area and three Spoonbills were in the harbour, along with at least three Sanderling, two Turnstones, three Whimbrel and a Grey Plover in with over a 100 Dunlin and Ringed Plover. 
On the sea there were two Great Crested Grebes and on the path by the harbour there was a pair of Red-legged Partridges. (MD)

Sanderling from Church Norton (AH)

Medmerry: Easton Lane to the breach - Two Yellow Wagtails in the fields opposite the Stilt Pool were noteworthy, and there were plenty of Skylarks, Meadow Pipits and Linnets with them, whilst a 'Greenand'-type Wheatear was in the fields by the beach and a Cuckoo was near the poplars. 
The first three Avocet chicks were on the pool with their parents, and their were at least 30 adults present, too. There were up to four Little Ringed Plovers and three Whimbrel about, c50 Black-tailed Godwits near the poplars, 16 Dunlin and seven Ringed Plovers on the creek along from the breach, where there were also two Brent Geese, and a dozen or so Sandwich and Common Terns were offshore.
Also, along Ham and Easton Lanes there were at least four Yellowhammers.  (AH)

Yellow Wagtail (above), Cuckoo, Avocet family, 'Greenland' Wheatear, Yellowhammer & Stock Dove and Wood Pigeon at Medmerry (AH)

North Wall: A Cuckoo was at Welbourne and 42 Mute Swans were on White's Creek. Just a few Moorhens and a single Little Ringed Plover on the sorry looking Breech Pool. How can an SSI site be so neglected and badly managed?. Along the wall were the regular Reed, Sedge and Cetti's Warblers and the same species could be heard along Pagham Rife as far as the pumping station. Pairs of Tufted Ducks and Coots were all Honer reservoir had to offer. Along the road to Honer were nesting Whitethroats and Yellowhammers. Blackcaps and Chiffchaffs singing in Owl Copse where there was a lot of Grey Heron activity presumably feeding young. (JDW) 

 Two views of the current state of the Breech Pool, looking less than well maintained (JDW)

Sidlesham: Our second family of Swallows returned to our sheds at the weekend and were busy renovating their nest this morning. (AH)

Swallows in a Sidlesham garden (AH)

No comments:

Post a Comment