Wednesday, 10 June 2015

10th - 12th June 2015

Friday, 12th JuneA Met Office forecast of warm humid weather with some severe thunderstorms and heavy rain....... mmm! well, after little more than a dampening overnight it was sunshine and heavy cloud this morning with a NE breeze - the deluge having largely passed us by - though there are further warnings of heavy rain this afternoon. The Hudsonian Whimbrel made the television news yesterday evening - on South Today at least. Also, late this afternoon a Red-footed Falcon was seen over the harbour.
Church Norton: The Hudsonian Whimbrel wasn't showing early on, though it was reported as present again later on, via the news sites. Very quiet otherwise, with calling Cuckoo, Blackcap and Chiffchaffs the highlight, and just a few Curlews and Common and Sandwich Terns evident in the harbour. (AH)
Later this afternoon, when the wind dropped the Hudsonian Whimbrel showed quite well out on the mud along the west side in the company of two Whimbrels and two or three Curlews. (BI/AH)
This afternoon a male Red-footed Falcon was seen going east over Church Norton Spit, then Pagham Spit, before being lost to view. (IL)
Hudsonian Whimbrel at Church Norton (BI)

Ferry Pool: A Green Sandpiper was present this morning, along with eight Avocets, ten Redshank, four Lapwing and c100 Black-tailed Godwits. (AH)

 Green Sandpiper (above) & Avocets on the Ferry (AH)

Late this afternoon there were 8 Redshank, 76 Black-tailed Godwits, 11 Avocets, 4 Teal, the Shelduck family, 3 Lapwings, 3 Reed Buntings, 1 Reed Warbler and a Whitethroat around the pool. (SR).

Selsey Bill: A short watch - 7.30-8.15am - produced little, just 20 Gannets feeding well offshore and 12 Sandwich Terns east. The House Martins were still busy in their puddle, with at least 20 birds coming and going. (AH)
For the BTO House Martin survey I have found 15 nests found so far within the Bill recording area, including 3 under construction. (SR)
House Martins at the Bill (AH)

Medmerry Breach: Three Whimbrel dropped in briefly early on, and a Little Tern and a couple of Sandwich Terns were feeding in the channels. Very little else was about, though, just a couple of Ringed Plovers, 20 Oystercatchers, 10 Shelduck and at least 30 Linnets. (SH/AH)
Linnets (above) & Oystercatcher at Medmerry (AH)

Thursday, 11th June: More of the same weather-wise; dry and sunny, some scattered cloud, but with a strong, cool E/NE wind. Similar on the bird front too; the Hudsonian Whimbrel was still present early morning.....

Could visiting bird-watchers looking for the Hudsonian Whimbrel please park at the Pagham Harbour Visitor Centre car-park (it's free!) and walk up from the Ferry, as the Church Norton car-park is very small and overfull, which is causing issues for churchyard users. Currently the bird is in the vegetated saltmarsh along the west side, midway between the Ferry and Church Norton, so it as close to park at the Visitor Centre anyway. 
Also there is a wedding tomorrow, and a practise today, so part of the car-park will be cordoned off, further reducing access, and obviously we would hope that people will respect the couple's big day.
Thanks AH/OM/IL (warden) 
Hudsonian Whimbrel-watchers viewed from Owl Point (AH)

Church Norton: The Hudsonian Whimbrel was still present along the west side of the harbour, though not showing especially closely, or well, in the vegetated saltmarsh. Also three Grey Plovers, a Whimbrel and three Curlews were present, a Cuckoo went over the harbour and several Whitehroats and Linnets were in the bushes. A juvenile Goldfinch and a flock of about 20 juvenile Long-tailed Tits were in the churchyard and a couple of Lapwings were along Rectory Lane. (AH et al)
The Hudsonian Whimbrel was still present early evening (IP et al), a visiting birder reported a Spoonbill flying over the harbour at lunchtime, and there was a Peregrine and several Common and Little Terns in the harbour this evening. (AH) 
Juvenile Goldfinch (above), juvenile Long-tailed Tit & Lapwing at Church Norton (AH)

Medmerry Breach: This morning there was a Ruff and three summer-plumaged Knot around the pools, along with a Bar-tailed Godwit, six Grey Plover and 12 Dunlin. (SH)
Ferry Pool: A Greenshank was roosting at high tide with a dozen Redshank and there were still two Little Ringed Plovers, eight Avocets, c100 Black-tailed Godwits and the family of six Shelduck-lings present. (AH)
Greenshank (above) & Shelduck-ling on the Ferry (AH)

Halseys Farm - North Wall: Pretty quiet through the farm, bar a Chiffchaff and the odd Whitethroat, and along the North Wall there were a number of Whitethroats, and plenty of singing Reed, Sedge and Cetti's Warblers, but no waders were on view anywhere, bar a few Lapwings in the harbour. (AH)
Whitethroat from North Wall (AH)

Wednesday, 10th June: Similar weather to yesterday - dry with sunshine and cloud but still with a nagging fresh - strong NE wind keeping the temperature down.
The main news is that the Hudsonian Whimbrel was still present again early this morning....and remained until at least 2100hrs after going missing for a while.
On a different note, the Spring sea-watching summary for 2015 together with data tables, compiled by JA, is now complete and available to view - just click the link on the title bar.

Church Norton: The Hudsonian Whimbrel was again present with a Whimbrel, but viewing for the growing crowd was difficult as it was in the creeks near the concrete slabs with the sun directly behind it. Unsurprisingly little else was noted in the very strong north-easterly, though a Chiffchaff and a Blackcap were singing. The Lapwing was still defending her chick along Rectory Lane, a pair of Ringed Plovers have nested in the same cropped field and there were two Red-legged Partridges (AH/C&ME/CRJ/SR).
Later, the Hudsonian Whimbrel was viewable on the mudflats from the Hide/steps area at midday, but then flew towards North Wall at around15:30 and was lost from view from the Church Norton side (via Sussex Birders Facebook/BI/SR/RBA). However it re-appeared at Church Norton and was back viewable from the hide area by early evening (RBA)...

Lapwing (above) & Red-legged Partridge at Church Norton (AH)

There was no sign of the Hudsonian Whimbrel for quite some while this afternoon, but the tide was very full and it was blowing a north-easterly gale. Not much else to be seen, but the Cuckoo fought valiantly against the wind to cross the harbour to Pagham Spit, and there were a handful of Gannets and Common and Sandwich Terns offshore and a couple of Little Terns in the harbour. (AH)

Common Tern (above) & Sandwich Tern at Church Norton (AH)

Selsey Bill: Nothing moving on the sea early on, bar half a dozen Common Terns west, but the House Martins were again enjoying the muddy puddles (courtesy of SR!), with at least twenty birds present, coming and going from east and west. (AH)

House Martins at the Bill (AH)

Ferry Pool: There were 14 Avocets this morning, along with the Shelduck family, eight Redshank and the 100 or so Black-tailed Godwits, all of which got very upset with a low-flying Buzzard.  (AH)

Black-tailed Godwits (above), with Avocets & Buzzard on the Ferry (AH)

Long Pool: Two Lesser Whitethroats were calling repeatedly, and Sedge and Reed Warblers, Whitethroats, Reed Buntings and Linnets were present all the way along. Twenty Swallows with a few Swifts and House Martins were overhead, whilst there were a dozen (presumably returning) Lapwing in Ferry Channel, and a Common Tern went over.(AH)

Whitethroat on Long Pool (AH)

North Wall: Far from the madding crowds - the North Wall was a place of wind and solitude this morning! The 40 or so Mute Swans continue to loaf and sleep around the sluice gates. Last weekend they were joined by a pair with 4 cygnets, still there today but unfortunately with only 2 cygnets. Apart from 8 Tufted Ducks there was nothing to report from the Breech Pool, though Whitethroats and Reed Buntings were feeding young along the Wall and a party of Long-tailed Tits were foraging through Owl Copse. Also, a family of young Swallows being fed at Honer Farm. Other than that all very quiet. (JDW) 

Juvenile Swallow (above) & Mute Swan family from North Wall (JDW)

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