Thursday, 29 October 2015

29th - 31st October 2015

Saturday, 31st October: A grey and cloudy start with a moderate E/SE breeze.......
Selsey Bill (0635-0830hrs) :  (Obs: SH/PB/AGB/C&ME/JA/SR)
Gannet - 3E, 3W
Shag - 1E, 1W
Brent Goose - 8E, 54W
Common Scoter - 16W
Pintail - 2W
Peregrine - 2os
Sparrowhawk - 1 gardens
Woodpigeon - 800E
Mediterranean Gull - 2E
Meadow Pipit - 21E
Pied Wagtail - 4E
Skylark - 15E
Swallow - 1E
Goldcrest -  2 seen, + lots heard

Goldfinch - 60+ E
Redpoll - 5E
Chaffinch - 6E

Selsey: Park Farm - The Green Sandpiper that over-wintered last year appears to be back for another winter, and there was also a single Redwing here and a Grey Wagtail on the roofs. (IP/S&SaH)

Church Norton: A flock of over 50 Goldcrests was at the western edge of the Oak Copse (Bluebell Wood) though there was nothing else with them. There was a pair of Stonechats at the first Several, and a Merlin flew across the harbour heading towards Pagham, whilst an adult Peregrine was sat on its usual island in the Harbour. (IP)
Lots of Goldcrests around today with 20+ at the first Severals. There was a Rock Pipit on the beach and the Dartford Warbler showed briefly a few times in the gorse bushes by the second Severals  (S&SaH)

 Dartford Warbler (well part of it!) at the Severals and a Grey Wagtail (!) at Park Farm (SH)

Medmerry: Breach viewpoint -  There were four Black Redstarts present in the area today; two on the rocks near the viewpoint and two more around the end caravans with a few Pied Wagtails. Two Wheatears were on the area of rough ground plus a flock of Linnets and a few Meadow Pipits (BI).
Black Redstart at Medmerry (BI) 

Easton Lane to the Stilt Pool - Pretty quiet this afternoon; highlights were a few Yellowhammers, two Stonechats, two Buzzards, and best of all, two Spotted Redshanks opposite the Stilt Pool. (S&SaH)

Spotted Redshank at Medmerry (SH)

Friday, 30th October: Overcast and rather gloomy, with a strong SSE wind and light to moderate rain through the morning..... gradually becoming drier by afternoon.

Selsey Bill (0715-0900hrs): SSE 6, cloud/rain (Obs: JA/OM). There was no sign of yesterday's Snow Bunting and despite the strong southerly wind little at sea either...! Log...
Great Northern Diver - 1 os
Shag - 3E
Gannet - 23W, 10 os
Common Scoter - 17E
Kittiwake - 1W
Pied Wagtail - 2 ob

Selsey: East Beach pool held only 3 - 4 Chiffchaffs and 4 Goldcrests this morning (OM)

Ferry Pool: Three Green Sandpipers, 60 Lapwing and several Avocets were present this morning together with the usual Teal and Shoveler (sorry AH, rest of your voicemail message was not discernable!)

Church Norton: The Whimbrel was still in the harbour and a few Goldcrests were along the hedgerows. The churchyard was quiet with just a couple of Goldcrests about, a Kingfisher was zooming about over the high tide and a few Reed Buntings were by the Severals. Plenty of commoner waders in the roosts and in the harbour Teal, Wigeon, Brent Geese and a Great Crested Grebe (AH/BI)

Reed Bunting at Church Norton (BI)

Pagham churchyard: I spent a good while following a flock (or was it two flocks) of 15 Long-tailed Tits, which was accompanied by a good number of hangers-on, which included 4 Chiffchaffs and at least 10 Goldcrests with Blue and Great Tits thrown in. It looked promising for something rarer to be with them, but if it was there I failed to find it! Also present were a couple of Jays and a Green Woodpecker (OM).

Pagham Lagoon: This afternoon a Slavonian Grebe and two Pochards were on the lagoon,  while further along on Pagham Spit there were three Wheatears, two Rock Pipits, 10 Skylarks and say 150 each of Greenfinch and Linnet, sometimes flying around in a great swarm. It was high tide and on Tern Island, among the Curlew, the leucistic bird was present. (ARK per SOS)

Medmerry: Breach - Around the rubble area near the breach this morning were two Black Redstarts, 50 Meadow Pipits, 50 Linnets and a Wheatear, plus a large flock of Starlings and a Kestrel. On the sea defence rocks were three Rock Pipits and the two Bar headed Geese were with the Canada  Geese viewed towards Ham Farm from the viewpoint. (BI)

Meadow Pipit, Wheatear, Black Redstart and Rock Pipit at Medmerry (BI)

Thursday, 29th October: A grey and breezy day, dry at first but with blustery squalls by mid-morning driven on by the strong south-south-easterly wind.....

Selsey Bill (0730-1030hrs): The unexpected star bird of the day was a Snow Bunting that was on the bank and the beach by the 'South-east' wall, at times coming within a few feet of observers, before hopping up on the wall and disappearing, to the frustration of late-comers.
Otherwise there was little to report - there was a Rock Pipit and a few Pied Wagtails about the beach, flocks of c50 Linnets and c30 Goldfinches came and went several times, but were clearly not moving far, whilst offshore the only thing in evidence was a trickle of Gannets west. (AH/OM/PC et al) Log below.....
Gannet - 5E, 12W
Shag - 4E
Brent Goose - 3W
Mediterranean Gull - 1E
Chiffchaff - 1 gardens
Goldcrest - 2 gardens
Pied Wagtail - 8 area
Goldfinch - c.30 area
Linnet - c.50 area
Snow Bunting - 1 ob
Also... late news of a Little Auk offshore early this morning, which then flew W (GH, per his blog)

Snow Bunting at Selsey Bill (upper three AH, lower three OM, bottom two DM)

Medmerry: Breach - There were three Black Redstarts, six Meadow Pipits, a Wren, a Wheatear and a flock of Linnets around the rubble piles just before the Breach this morning. (BI).
Our visit to the Breach proved birdless, but a walk from Chainbridge to the Ham viewpoint produced 31 Golden Plover, 4 Stonechats and  a ring-tailed Hen Harrier battling the strong winds; no sign of the Great Grey Shrike however (BFF/DIS/DM).

 Black Redstart (above) and Wheatear at Medmerry (BI)

Selsey: Coastguard Station - Another Black Redstart was on the house/around the gardens here this morning. (BI)
East Beach - there were 4 Chiffchaffs and 6 Goldcrests present this morning. (OM)

Ferry Pool: The Little Stint was present again this morning, among a reasonable selection of waders. A Spotted Redshank was in Ferry Channel early on, whilst later two were on the pool, along with five Snipe, two Green Sandpipers, twelve Avocets, ten Dunlin, 25 Redshank, 35 Black-tailed Godwits and c80 Lapwing, with similar of the latter on the adjacent cropped field. There were also 50+ Wigeon and Teal, up to 20 Shoveler and four Shelduck present. (AH/OM)

Little Stint with Lapwings, Lapwings & Snipe around the Ferry (AH)

Drake Shoveler (DM)

Church Norton: Not much to report - there were no Black Redstarts about this morning, with just a couple of Blackcaps and Jays, plus a few Goldcrests about the churchyard area, whilst in the harbour the Whimbrel was present along with plenty of Grey Plovers, Dunlin, Curlews and Redshank, plus a Pintail and 50 or so Brent Geese. (AH/BI)
The oak wood at Church Norton was nigh on deserted of avian life today, and with the onset of rain we sheltered in the hide, noting a few Knot, 3 Bar-tailed Godwits and a single Whimbrel  with the usual suspects, though there was not much else except a single Kingfisher. (BFF/DM/DIS)

Pagham churchyard: No sign again of any Black Redstarts here, but two Chiffchaffs and c.10 Goldcrests were present, plus a Green Woodpecker pecking the (wooden?) tiles of the spire! (OM)

Monday, 26 October 2015

26th - 28th October 2015

Wednesday, 28th October: A calm and fairly grey start gave way to a bright morning with sunshine and cloud, and pleasantly mild too, with a gentle SW breeze....

Selsey Bill (0745-1000hrs).     (Obs: M&CE)
Great Northern Diver - 1W, 1os

Gannet - 4W
Shag - 2E
Brent Goose - 10E, 50W
Eider - 1W (male)
Red-breasted Merganser - 2E, 1W

Common Scoter - 15E, 10W
Razorbill - 1E
Mediterranean Gull - 2E

Later, two Black Redstarts at the Bill, on a sea-fronting house (near Wight Way), whilst at East Beach there was a single female-type Black Redstart around the fishing huts (SR).
A Green Sandpiper had returned to Park Farm reservoir this evening (SH)

Green Sandpiper at Park Farm reservoir (SH)
Ferry Pool: The Little Stint was again present this morning, along with two Green Sandpipers, six Snipe - all together at one point, a dozen Dunlin and Redshank, plus eight Avocets, 25 Black-tailed Godwits and c150 Lapwing, plus a visit from the Grey Wagtail. (AH)

Little Stint with Dunlin and Teal (above), Snipe & Black-tailed Godwit on the Ferry (AH)

Church Norton: The two Black Redstarts were present again in the churchyard this morning, initially along the back hedge but them among the gravestones, to the annoyance of the many local Robins. There were a couple of Chiffchaffs and quite a few Goldcrests about, too, plus a pair of Jays, but elsewhere was quiet, though a Merlin shooting across the bay and upsetting the finches on the spit livened it up! Otherwise, the Whimbrel was in its usual spot near the bench, there were 50+ Brent Geese in the harbour and a couple of Reed Buntings along the Severals. (AH)

Black Redstarts (above), Merlin & Redshank at Church Norton (AH)


Black Redstarts and Redshanks at Church Norton (M.Rose)

Medmerry: Breach viewpoint - A Short-eared Owl was quartering the fields to the east this morning, and two Black Redstarts and two Wheatears were on the rocks. (A&YF)

Porthole Farm area - The great Grey Shrike was still present this afternoon. (RJS)

North Wall: A Grey Wagtail was in the horse paddock, at least half a dozen Snipe were on the Breech Pool with 20 or so Black-tailed Godwits, with another flock of half a dozen or so of the former flying around before settling further back along the rife, a Water Rail was briefly viewable, a Kingfisher passed through and a couple of Stonechats were present.
There were plenty of Brent Geese and Wigeon in the harbour on the high tide, and a Yellow-legged Gull was on view before the tide rose too high. Also a couple of Redpolls were in the trees along the track to the harbour and a Fieldfare was in the hedge, but there was no sign of any Black Redstarts in the churchyard, although there were plenty of Goldcrests and three Chiffchaffs there. (OM/PC/AH)

Grey Wagtail (above), Snipe & Black-tailed Godwit from North Wall (AH)

Fieldfare at the North Wall, and Yellow-legged Gull (right) with Lesser Black-backed Gull (OM)

East side: A serious bit of bush-bashing for me in various secluded spots between White's Creek and the Lagoon this morning, but nothing unusual found, just 6 Chiffchaffs (including one singing on and off for several minutes), at least 20 Goldcrests and 15 Long-tailed Tits.(OM)

Chichester: Just off the peninsula, a Ring-necked Parakeet flew over Orchard Street in the middle of the city this afternoon. (SH)

Runcton: Only a single Coal Tit in my garden this morning and a Hornet trying to drown itself in the pond this afternoon. This is entirely unprompted by the authors of this blog, but if you receive the Birdwatch/Birdguides weekly email you can take part in the annual Birders preferences questionaire, among which you can vote for your favourite Blog, wouldn’t it be great if all the regular observers of this blog voted for it, in due thanks to Owen and Andrew’s magnificent efforts. (CRJ).
(Note: included at the request of CRJ. We are very flattered of course, but leave it entirely to the individual to decide if they think it appropriate or not - Eds..)

Tuesday, 27th October: A lovely morning - mild, a bit less breezy than yesterday and a bit of sun, though due to deteriorate later on......

Medmerry: West Sands to the Breach - There were a minimum of seven Black Redstarts this morning, thus - three together around the Go-kart track near the windmill, two along the front of the caravan site and a further two towards the breach, though strangely none at all on the rocks at the west end which they preferred last autumn. There were plenty of Linnets, Pied Wagtails and Meadow Pipits by the Go-kart track and towards the breach, but not much else on view bar a couple of Stonechats at the latter site. Around the pools there were 30 or so Ringed Plovers, 10 Dunlin and two or three Curlews. (AH)

Black Redstarts (above) & Meadow Pipit at Medmerry (AH)

Selsey Bill (0715-1115hrs): Dry, sunny, SE4  (Obs: C&ME/DS/DF).   
Great Northern Diver - 2os
Red-throated Diver - 2E, 1W
Gannet - 9E, 7W

Shag - 8E                                      
Brent Goose - 1E, 2W                             

Common Scoter - 2E, 7W
Red-breasted Merganser - 2E, 9W
Wigeon - 7E, 2W
Curlew - 1E                   
Mediterranean Gull - 5E, 1W                                   
Kittiwake - 4E            
Razorbill - 2W

Auk sp - 4E, 2W
Great Spotted Woodpecker - 1E             
Meadow Pipit  - 54E 

Pied Wagtail - 7E
Swallow - 6E                
Starling - 6N                
Chiffchaff - 2 gardens
Goldcrest  - 2 gardens

North Wall: The two Black Redstarts were still present around Pagham Church this morning. (PC)
In the ploughed field north of Church Lane there were 560 Lapwing, 300 Starlings and a lone Wheatear, and a late Swallow passed over eastwards. On the Breech Pool were 11 Common Snipe and 2 Grey Herons plus a few Teal and Mallard and along the Wall there was a pair of Stonechats and Honer Fields 2 and 3 held a mixed flock of Corvids numbering around 400 plus at least 300 more Starlings. There was still one Black Redstart in Pagham Churchyard together with a mixed flock that contained at least 18 Long-tailed Tits. (JDW) 

Black Redstart in Pagham Church & Grey Heron from North Wall (JDW)

Ferry Pool: The Little Stint was at the back again early this morning but had disappeared later on. There were five Green Sandpipers this morning, along with a Snipe, 12 Dunlin and a roosting flock of 31 Avocets before they decamped to the harbour. At least 120 Redshank were roosting at high tide, the Grey Wagtail came and went a couple of times, and there were 30+ Shoveler among the duck before they too all went into the harbour. (AH/PH/AB)
The Little Stint was still present mid-afternoon along the side of the pool. (PC)

Avocets over the Ferry (AH)

Medmerry: Porthole Farm - The Great Grey Shrike was still around the hedgerows south of the buildings, and there were at least 30 Yellowhammers in the adjacent hedges, plus two pairs of Stonechats. (AH/AB)

Great Grey Shrike (above), Yellowhammers & Stonechats at Porthole Farm (AH)

Church Norton: No sign of any Black Redstarts in the churchyard in a quick look, though a Mistle Thrush was present, and a dozen Pied Wagtails were sat on the roof. There were at least 75 Brent Geese in the harbour. (AH)

Mistle Thrush (above) & Pied Wagtail at Church Norton (AH)

Runcton: In the lane south of the village today there were a pair of Stonechats and a Chiffchaff. Up until yesterday there were three Coal Tits visiting the feeders in the garden -  they all looked grey on the back but prolonged observation  always revealed a hint of olive, so not “Continentals!“ (CRJ)

Monday, 26th October: After yesterday's still conditions, a real blustery day with the wind in the south-east and a mix of sun and cloud.....

Selsey Bill (0715-0915hrs):  Cloudy, dry, wind SE5: Not as much moving at sea as might have been hoped for, though the first two Great Northern Divers of the autumn were seen, both going east. Otherwise there were a few Gannets and auks moving about, and a steady eastbound movement of Linnets and Goldfinches, plus a couple of Swallows and a small fall of Goldcrests, whilst the first signs of autumn Woodpigeon emigration also got underway. The log below is of minimum totals, as it's impossible to keep looking up when you're checking the gardens! Others may have additional counts.... (Obs: OM/AH/GH/SR)
Great Northern Diver - 2E
Gannet - 3E, 10W
Shag - 1E
Common Scoter- 1E
Razorbill - 1W
auk sp - 4W
Mediterranean Gull  - 2W
Swallow - 2S
Woodpigeon - 400+ out S
Stock Dove - 39SE
Pied Wagtail - 13E
Meadow Pipit - 12E
Goldcrest - 25+ gardens
Chiffchaff - 2
Linnet - 120E
Goldfinch - 320E

Count that lot! Part of the Woodpigeon flock departing the Bill (OM)

Selsey: A check of the regular sites didn't produce a great deal........around the area of Warner Lane there were 11 Snipe on the damp spots, plus 2 Stonechats, just 2 Chiffchaffs and several Goldcrests.
Northcommon Farm held just a few Chiffchaffs and Goldcrests, and it was much the same at East beach, where there were five and six respectively (OM).

Medmerry: A juvenile Marsh Harrier was hunting the seawall between Greenwood Farm and Easton Farm at 10.30 this morning. (PH)
The Great Grey Shrike was still present this afternoon near Porthole farm, (PH/per Pete Charleston).

Easton Lane to the Stilt pools: Two Stonechats and four Wrens around the car park. A flock of Yellowhammers were around Easton sluice and a flock of Linnets, plus two more Stonechats further down. Two Black-tailed Godwits were on the mud where the cattle have been, whilst on the pools, fifty Canada Geese and two Bar-headed Geese and a few Wigeon & Teal were present. Offshore, there were two Grey Seals. (BI)

Ferry Pool: About 60 Golden Plovers were flying about over the pool this morning, but didn't seem to want to settle. On the pool were two Green Sandpipers, six Dunlin, about 20 Redshank, 22 Avocets and the usual Lapwing, Black-tailed Godwit and wildfowl flocks. Also the Kingfisher buzzed over early on and a few Goldcrests were in the hedges. (AH/OM)
Later on a Little Stint was present among the Dunlin. (A. Gray per SOS)

Golden Plovers (above) & Green Sandpiper over Ferry (AH)

Church Norton: There were at least 50 Goldcrests around the hide and car-park, along with 20+ Long-tailed Tits and a couple of Chiffchaffs. Also a Mistle Thrush was on the tall pine in the car-park, three Redwings flew out of the churchyard and a couple of Swallows went over.
Elsewhere was pretty quiet for anything out of the ordinary, with 50+ Brent Geese and a few Wigeon and Teal being about the only birds in evidence on the high tide, and no visible migration evident along the beach or Severals. There was a single Dunlin in with 30 Turnstones on the beach and at least a dozen Gannets were drifting west well offshore, whilst the only birds around Greenlease Farm were three Grey Partridges in with around 30 Red-legged Partridges. (AH)
Later there were two Black Redstarts in the churchyard; also a Green Woodpecker, a Kestrel, 2 Chiffchaffs and 10+ Goldcrests (which seem to be everywhere today!)  (SR)

Black Redstart in Church Norton churchyard (SR)

Mistle Thrush (above), Goldcrest, Long-tailed Tits, Dunlin & Grey and Red-legged Partridges at Church Norton (AH)

Pagham: Church Lane: A check of the churchyard here paid off with two Black Redstarts actually on the church roof; also logged were two Chiffchaffs and six Goldcrests. (OM)

 Black Redstarts on Pagham church (OM)

Pagham North Wall: Little to report from the Breech pool, apart from six Snipe and a selection of Wigeon, Teal and one Pintail. A couple of Cetti's Warblers were calling from nearby and a Grey Wagtail went over. (OM)

White's Creek/East side: Plenty of the regular wildfowl in the channel and the only highlights were a fairly late Common Sandpiper and 67 Golden Plover. Several Chiffchaffs and about eight Goldcrests were also scattered along the hedges. (OM).