Friday, 22 May 2015

22nd - 24th May 2015

Sunday, 24th May: Cloudy with periods of hazy sunshine this morning and a moderate breeze W/SW 3, but the increasing risk of showers later...

Selsey Bill (0600-0800hrs): Cloud/sun SSE3 (JA/SR)
Great Northern Diver - 2os
Gannet - 23E, 6W
Fulmar - 1E, 2W
Sandwich Tern - 21E, 4W
Common Tern - 2os
Kittiwake - 1W
House Martin - 4p
Swallow - 4p

Additional (1600-1800): (SH/J&PW) Amazingly, after last week's bird, another Nightjar seen feeding offshore from the Bill in daylight - this one was a female bird, without the white wing flashes, and went west a few hundred yards offshore, keeping low and making slow headway into the wind. 
Fulmar - 2W
Gannet - 15E, 8W
Common Scoter - 24E
Sandwich Tern - 14os including the winter-plumaged bird seen yesterday
Little Tern - 3os
Common Tern - 1os
Guillemot - 2W
auk sp - 1E, 2W
Swallow - 5W, 2N
Nightjar - 1W

Medmerry: Stilt Pool area - No sign of the Little Stint this morning, though there was a Ruff present - rather surprisingly the first for the year on the peninsula. There were also four Little Ringed Plovers, 20+ Avocets, a pair of Redshank and a couple of Gadwall on the pools, plus a dozen Black-tailed Godwits which went off north-east and re-appeared on the Ferry. There are possibly six nesting pairs of Little Ringed Plovers and as many as 18 of  Avocets around the reserve, which is pretty impressive considering both species were occasional breeders on the peninsula before the creation of the Medmerry Reserve. Also, it looks like a pair or two of Black-headed Gulls may be nesting, too.
Other birds around included the two summering Brent Geese, the usual Skylarks, Linnets and Meadow Pipits, and two Sandwich Terns and a Gannet offshore. (AH/PH/PLS)

Ruff (above), Little Ringed Plovers & a Black-headed Gull seeing off a juvenile Cormorant at Medmerry (AH)

The Little Stint was back on the pool early afternoon but disappeared again (S&SaH), though the Ruff was still present later on. Also there were 10+ Little Ringed Plovers around the pool and several displaying Reed Buntings and Meadow Pipits. (AH/SR)

Little Stint (above), Ruff & Little Ringed Plover at Medmerry (SH)

Reed Bunting (above) & Meadow Pipit at Medmerry (AH)

North Wall: There were two Little Ringed Plovers on the Breech Pool this morning, plus a Common Sandpiper in White's Creek and a Cuckoo near the stables. (PC)

Ferry Pool: The seven Sheduck-lings were still present along with the dozen Black-tailed Godwits, three Avocets, four Gadwall and a drake Teal. (AH)

Shelduck-lings (above) & Black-tailed Godwits on the Ferry (AH)

Church Norton: In the harbour there were four Curlew, about a dozen Grey Plover and about 20 each of Dunlin and Ringed Plover. Just two Little and one Common Tern were present, and there was an ominous lack of activity around Tern Island. The Cuckoo was still around the back of the Severals, Linnets were nest-building at the back of the horse field and there were also 12 Tufted Ducks, five Sedge Warblers, four Reed Buntings, three Cetti's Warblers, three Whitethroats, a Buzzard and a Little Grebe, but not much else of note bar the odd Sedge Warbler, Whitethroat, Blackcap and Chiffchaff, none of which was singing very enthusiastically! Also there were two Lapwing pairs with chicks and two Red-legged Partridges along Rectory Lane. (AH/SR/RJS/A&YF)

Red-legged Partridge at Church Norton (AH)

Sidlesham: A Peregrine was over our garden at midday. (AH)

Peregrine over Sidlesham (AH)

Saturday, 23rd May: Dry, with sunshine and some cloud and lighter winds. A pleasant enough day that unusually found both editors birding away from the Peninsula, with AH and some of the regulars heading up to East Anglia whilst yours truly went west to the New Forest with the Hants contingent. I can only hope AH did better than I did, for the awful spring continued and not a single Wood Warbler was located at Acres Down in all the usual spots - quite amazing. However, enough of that, back to our patch.....(OM)

Selsey Bill (0530 - 0845hrs): Sunny with cloud, N2-3  (Obs: SH/JA)
Great Northern Diver - 3 os

Fulmar - 1E, 2W, 1os
Gannet - 41E, 6W
Shag - 1os
Common Scoter - 2E

Gadwall - 2W
Turnstone - 1E
Sanderling - 1E

Curlew - 2E
Arctic Skua - 1W (l/p)
Little Tern - 7os
Common Tern - 6os
Sandwich Tern - 28os
House Martin - 7p
Swallow - 1N

Additional:  1600 - 1715hrs: (SH/JA)
Great Northern Diver - 1os
Fulmar - 1E
Gannet - 19E, 5W
Guillemot - 1W

Auk sp - 3W
Common Tern - 3 os
Sandwich Tern - 5 os
Kittiwake - 1W

MedmerryA Little Stint was on the Stilt Pools this afternoon.  On the east side there were 4 Knot, 3 Grey Plover, 4 Whimbrel, 25 Black-tailed Godwits plus several Corn Buntings singing from around the seawall. (PH)

Ferry Pool: This morning there were 15 Avocets, 80 Black-tailed Godwits, 1 Redshank, 7 Shelduck ducklings and a Buzzard (CRJ).

North Fields area...on my ride down through the farms today I logged the following;
Fisher: singing male Lesser Whitethroat and 3 Common Whitethroats
Bramber Farm: 2  singing and nest gathering Reed Warblers
Marsh Farm: concrete road, 4 singing Reed Warblers
Mill Pond Marsh: 2 singing Reed Warblers
On the return ride, 2 prs Lapwing on Chalder Farm. (CRJ).

Church Norton: A summer plumage Knot with a Turnstone was the highlight (SH)
Birds seen during the RSPB walk included several Spotted Flycatchers, Sedge and Reed Warblers, Whitethroats, a late Wheatear, Cuckoo, Greenfinches, Goldfinches, Red-legged Partridges and two Mediterranean Gulls. (G Whitehead per SOS)

Friday, 22nd May: Dry with sunshine and cloud, but still with that nagging W wind keeping the temperature down, though feeling pleasant in sheltered spots.... and unfortunately it looks as if the W/NW airstream will dominate until the month's end!

Selsey Bill (0545 - 0815hrs): Unsurprisingly quiet, though seven Brent Geese came in from the east and settled on the sea. The tern flock was beginning to build up again with Sandwich and Common Terns drifting from east and west. Full log below.. (JA/AH)
Great Northern Diver - 1os
Gannet - 12E, 2W
Fulmar - 1E, 1W
Brent Goose - 7os
Common Scoter - 7E
Oystercatcher - 2 ob
Kittiwake - 1E, 1W
Sandwich Tern - 4os
Common Tern - 2os
Auk sp - 2W
Meadow Pipit - 1N
Swallow - 2N
House Martin - 6 p
Chiffchaff - 1 gardens

Later, a light phase Arctic Skua flew W @ 14:15 (BJ/PJ)

Common Tern at Selsey Bill (AH)

Ferry Pool: A Short-eared Owl appeared over Ferry Farm (the buildings south of the Ferry), upsetting the local Wood Pigeons before drifting off eastwards. On the pool there was a family of Shelduck with seven ducklings, and five Avocets and four Gadwall were also present. (AH)  There were 16 Avocets by afternoon (IL).

Shelduck family on the Ferry (AH)

North Wall: There was a pair of Little Ringed Plovers mating on the mud of the Breech Pool this morning, and a Cuckoo was in the trees by the stables. (PC)

Church Norton: A Raven calling and a Marsh Harrier south down the spit heading over the Severals (IL).  

Medmerry: Easton Lane to the Stilt Pool and the Breach - A Cuckoo was calling from the poplars, but the northern end was otherwise quiet. A pair of Little Ringed Plovers were in the pool by Marsh Barn, with further singles on the Stilt Pool and another right down near the breach, and there were at least twenty Avocets scattered about and, though youngsters were hard to find, the parents' behaviour indicated there were a few.

Most surprising bird was a male Wheatear along the fence by the beach, but it was the only indicator of migration, bar a few Dunlin and Ringed Plovers, plus a Grey Plover, near the breach. Skylarks were everywhere, as were Linnets and Meadow Pipits, and a Corn Bunting and a couple of Yellowhammers and Reed Buntings were also present. (AH)

Little Ringed Plover (above), Wheatear, Corn Bunting, Skylark & Meadow Pipit at Medmerry (AH)

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