Saturday, 29 August 2015

29th - 31st August 2015

Bank Holiday Monday, 31st August: A typically wet Bank Holiday to end what has been a fairly dull, damp and cool August this year. Cloudy with periods of rain and a northerly wind today - even attracting a yellow weather warning from the Met Office due to the potential for heavy rainfall!

Selsey Bill (0630-0930) (SH/JA) Very little moving on the sea, but 40+ Yellow Wagtails and plenty of hirundines were moving through, plus an attendant Hobby. Full log below....
Gannet - 20E, 3W
Great Crested Grebe - 1E
Common Scoter - 5E
Wigeon - 8E, 3W
Dunlin - 12W

Hobby - 1
Commic Tern - 14W
Sandwich Tern - 8E, 1os
Kittiwake - 1E
Mediterranean Gull - 8E, 1os
Yellow Wagtail - 41E (first seen on beach and Oval field)
Sand Martin - 3E
House Martin - 53E
Swallow - 16E
Willow Warbler - 1 gardens

(1500-1800) (SH)
Balearic Shearwater - 4E (together just beyond Mile Basket Line)
Gannet - 74E, 10W

Common Scoter - 9E
Mediterranean Gull - 1E, 1os
Sandwich Tern - 10E, 4W, 3os
Common Tern - 11E

Swift - 2p
House Martin - 50p
Swallow - 7E

Ferry Pool: There was a Greenshank at the back this morning, in the company of six Green Sandpipers, and a Knot dropped in very briefly before flying off west. There were also three Avocets, at least a dozen Shoveler, though eight flew off, c40 Black-tailed Godwits, c100 Lapwing and c50 Teal. (AH) This afternoon there were still four Green Sandpipers and also four Common Sandpipers present. (IP)

Greenshank, Green Sandpipers and Shoveler (above) & Shovelers on the Ferry (AH)

Church Norton: No sign (unsurprisingly, given the weather!) of the Wryneck up to late morning, but the two Redstarts, a Whinchat, two Wheatears and quite a few Whitethroats were about the area, and a Spotted Flycatcher, a Blackcap and a Great Spotted Woodpecker were in the churchyard. 
Also, a flock of eight Wigeon (seen earlier past the Bill) went east, offshore, and a group of 25 or so Knot dropped into the harbour, where there were also three Common and one Sandwich Terns. (AH/IP)

Wigeon (above) & Great Spotted Woodpecker at Church Norton (AH)

This afternoon in better conditions there was a bit more about, including a Pied Flycatcher, at least half a dozen Spotted Flycatchers, a Redstart, several Blackcaps and Willow/Chiffs and a couple of young Green Woodpeckers around the hide/churchyard area. There were also several more Redstarts, a Lesser Whitethroat, a Whinchat, at least three Wheatears and plenty of Whitethroats along the Severals/beach area, and 20+ House Martins went over. (IL/SR/IP/AH)

Pied Flycatcher, Redstart & Green Woodpecker (above) (IL), Whinchat, Wheatear, Spotted Flycatcher & Whitethroat (below) (AH) all at Church Norton

Medmerry: Stilt Pool area - The Marsh Harrier was present again, along with two Bar Headed Geese, four Common Sandpipers, two Greenshank. and lots of Sand Martins and Yellow Wagtails. Also, a Black Tern went westwards into the Solent. (IL)

Bar-headed Geese among Canada Geese at Medmerry (IL)

Breach area - There was a party of nine Curlew Sandpipers (just one of which was a juvenile) on the mud by the breach this afternoon. (GH on his blog)

Sunday, 30th August: A very grey start, with a modest easterly breeze, but quite mild.....

Selsey Bill: (0630-1000hrs) Cloudy with hazy sun, wind light NE 2-3 (JA/PB/AGB/SR)
Gannet - 32E, 17W, 12os

Fulmar - 3W
Balearic Shearwater - 2E (0840) c. half-mile range, good views
Grey Heron - 1W (mobbed by gulls)
Common Scoter -18E
Tufted Duck - 1E
Wigeon - 1W
Dunlin - 4E
Golden Plover - 1E
Oystercatcher - 3 ob
Sandwich Tern - 8E (2 with food), 9W

Kittiwake - 1W
Mediterranean Gull - 4E, 2W
Yellow Wagtail - 3 p (2 on beach)
Swallow - 41E, 122N from sea!
Sand Martin - 13N, 6E
House Martin - 8N, 28p

Willow Warbler - 5 gardens
Whitethroat - 3 gardens

There were up to eight Swifts feeding overhead just inland from the Bill this evening. (IP)

Selsey: Northcommon Farm area: Migrants included 2 Spotted Flycatchers, 2 Redstarts and a small party of Goldcrests (at 'flycatcher corner') Also there was an adult and eight young Grey Partridges in the pea field at the end of Golf Links Lane. (S&SaH)

Church Norton: There was no sign of the Red-backed Shrike this morning, though the Wryneck was still in the bushes at the edge of the horse field. There were three Redstarts (including a male) in the vicinity, along with a couple of Whinchats and Wheatears, plenty of Whitethroats and at least one Sedge Warbler. 
There were up to ten Spotted Flycatchers about, including at least six in the churchyard, and the odd Blackcap and Willow/Chiff present, too, plus a continuous flow of hirundines east, most of which were Swallows. A Pied Flycatcher was also located early morning (CG et al).
Around Park Farm/Greenlease Farm there were single Grey and Yellow Wagtails, plus another Spotted Flycatcher and a Blackcap.
There were still one or two Sandwich and Common Terns in the harbour, including one of the latter bringing in fish to Tern Island, and chasing off the gulls, suggesting it may still have a youngster there. Not much else of note out on the mud, though there was a juvenile Shelduck present. (AH/IP/SH/PB/AGB/A&YF/RJS et al)

Wryneck (above), Whinchat, Redstart & Spotted Flycatcher at Church Norton (AH)

This evening there were 20+ Yellow Wagtails and two Reed Buntings around Park Farm, two Spotted Flycatchers at the rear of the first Severals, along the front there were four Whinchats, the Wryneck showing in what is becoming its usual bush, two Wheatears and a male Redstart, whilst there were a Common Sandpiper and a Kingfisher along the concrete spit. (S&SaH)

Ferry Pool: There were 2 Ruff early on but by 0900 one had disappeared, whilst seven Green Sandpipers were also present; numbers of the latter also soon reducing (CG). There were four Green Sandpipers and two Common Sandpipers around the edges this morning, but only one of the Ruff. Shoveler numbers had risen to seven, whilst there were 40+ Teal, and a big roosting flock of c120 Lapwing and c40 Black-tailed Godwits. (AH/SHo/DM/DIS)

Shoveler on the Ferry (AH)
Common Sandpiper (above), Ruff (centre two) and Black-tailed Godwit at the Ferry Pool (DM) 

Selsey: Warner Lane paddocks/area -  A quick look here was much less productive than yesterday, with just a handful of Whitethroats present, plus several hundred Swallows overhead. (AH)

Swallow at Warner Lane paddocks (AH)

Medmerry:  Easton Lane to Stilt Pool      (C&ME/SH/BI/SR)
The Wryneck was still present near Marsh Barn, and other species logged were as follows....
Black Swan - 1
Ruff - 2
Avocet - 5
Common Sandpiper - 6   
Yellow Wagtail - 7
Yellowhammer - 5
Reed Bunting - 6
Lesser Whitethroat - 2
Whitethroat - 12
Wheatear - 1

Redstart - 1
Skylark - 2
Willow Warbler - 6
Also small flocks of Meadow Pipit, Linnets & Goldfinch,
plus a constant stream of hirundines mostly Swallows.

Redstart (at top) and Wryneck (at bottom) & Black Swan at Medmerry (BI)

Eastons Lane - Ham Farm:  A Hobby was at Ham farm, whilst a female Marsh Harrier was hunting and was seen to catch a Starling. Also 10+ Wheatears and 3 Buzzards logged. (S&SaH)

 Marsh Harrier, Kestrel and Wheatear at Medmerry (SH)

Porthole Farm to Ham Farm - There were at least half a dozen Wheatears on the harvested fields this evening - each with a big round straw bale to itself! Not much else was seen - just a Spotted Flycatcher by the houses, a Sedge Warbler in the ditches and the Marsh Harrier, which was sat out in the middle of the reserve from the viewpoint. (AH)

Wheatears at Medmerry (AH)

Saturday, 29th August: A lovely start to the Bank Holiday weekend, bright after a grey start and still, but with the inevitable threat of rain later in the day....

Church Norton: The juvenile Red-backed Shrike was still in the horse field from early on, and the Wryneck was also present around the same area, to the delight of the many observers this morning.
Also along the Severals were c20+ Whitethroats, 2 Lesser Whitethroats, 3 Sedge Warblers, c5 Reed Warblers, a Willow/Chiff, a male and a female Redstart and a Kingfisher. Interestingly the Whitethroats chased the shrike all over the place, and it was the Sedge Warblers that pushed the Wryneck out of its bush to sit out on the fence. There were also five Roe Deer in the field and lots of hirundines (mostly Swallows with a few Sand Martins) were moving overhead.
Offshore a pair of Common Scoter flew east, a couple Gannets were about and three Great Crested Grebes were on the sea, whilst on the beach there were up to three Wheatears, and in the harbour there were a dozen Sandwich Terns and a Sparrowhawk went over.
In the churchyard there was a Spotted Flycatcher and a juvenile-type Redstart and, unusually, three Coal Tits, whilst  behind the hide were another Spotted Flycatcher, a Garden Warbler and two Blackcaps, and in the car-park there was a singing Chiffchaff. 
There were also two more Spotted Flycatchers around Greenlease Farm. (AB/PB/SH/AH/IP et al)
This evening a walk along the Severals in the rain was brightened up by a juvenile Hobby chasing an unidentified passerine around the beach before retiring unsuccessful towards Priory Wood. (AH)

Red-backed Shrike (above) (AH) & Wryneck (AB) at Church Norton

Garden Warbler (above), Whitethroat & Sparrowhawk at Church Norton (AH)

Clouds over the sea (above) & sunrise over the harbour at Church Norton (AB)

Selsey Bill (0900-1030hrs): A leisurely visit this morning, where I met this year's Pom King JA to hand over the Pom Trophy; duty done, we then spent time checking the gardens whilst keeping an eye on the sea. There wasn't a great deal happening offshore, but a few migrant warblers were found in the gardens, before we called it a day....(OM)... log below:
Gannet - 2E
Fulmar - 1W
Common Tern - 2E
Sandwich Tern - 3W
House Martin - c.20 p
Sand Martin - c.20 p, some heading E
Blackcap - 1
Whitethroat - 3
Willow Warbler - 5

Pom King 2015 Justin Atkinson receives the trophy in a low-key ceremony at the Bill (OM).

Selsey: Warner Lane paddocks/area - A few migrants were present today....
including four Yellow Wagtails in and out of the horse compound, 10 Whitethroats, a Lesser Whitethroat, 2 Willow Warblers, 3 Whinchats and a Spotted Flycatcher, whilst overhead was a mixed hirundine flock of c.20 each of Sand and House Martin and 40 Swallows (OM).

 Yellow Wagtails and Whinchat at Warner Lane paddocks, Selsey (OM)

Ferry Pool: On the pool this morning there were the two juvenile Ruff, a Green Sandpiper, a Common Sandpiper, eight Avocets, three Shoveler, 12 Black-tailed Godwits, 80 Lapwing and c40 Teal. (AH/AB/PB)

Ruff on the Ferry (AH)

The highlights of our walk between the Visitor Centre and the sewage Works were -
20+ Yellow Wagtails ( among the cows )
2 Common Redstarts (one male )
Spotted Flycatcher
2 Lesser Whitethroat
3 Swift (C&CM/C&ME)

Medmerry: Easton Lane to the Stilt Pool - Highlight was the Wryneck, viewable occasionally in the hedge from the gate just north of Marsh Barn. Otherwise, migrants were relatively few, but included three Whinchats, 20+ Yellow Wagtails flying about, just a single Wheatear and a few Reed Warblers, Sedge Warblers, Whitethroats and Willow/Chiffs, plus many hundreds of Sand Martins, House Martins and Swallows - the former being most numerous.
There were at least eight Common Sandpipers spread about the area on the big tide, plus a Green Sandpiper and up to four Greenshanks, though waders on the Stilt Pool were few - just two Ruff and a couple of Common Sandpipers.
On the pool there were at least 60 Teal and 350 Canada Geese, plus the Mute Swan pair and all seven well-grown cygnets and a family of well-grown Tufted Ducks. (AH)

Wryneck (above), Whinchat, Sedge Warbler, Common Sandpiper, Sand Martin & Sand and House Martins at Medmerry (AH)

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