Saturday, 28 November 2015

28th - 30th November 2015

Monday, 30th November: Remaining very unsettled; gale-force WSW winds, heavy cloud and rain never far away....

Selsey Bill (0740-1115hrs): (Obs: C&ME/SR/AH/CRJ) Not as much moving as yesterday, but there were still Kittiwakes moving west, plus a few auks moving about and the Eider and four Great Northern Divers offshore. Full log below.....
Great Northern Diver - 4os
Gannet - 2E, 20W 

Great Crested Grebe - 1W
Brent Goose - 2W
Eider - 1os
Common Scoter - 3E, 4os
Red-breasted Merganser - 3E, 18W   
Pintail - 1W
Turnstone - 37 ob            
Guillemot - 7W 
auk sp - 10E, 30W
Kittiwake - 13E, 225W

Church Norton: Not a lot going on in the dire weather - just two Red-breasted Merganser and two Mediterranean Gulls offshore, six Linnets flying east along the beach, 30 Wigeon in the creek by the horse field, and 800+ Dunlin and 200+ Knot out on the mud.
There was a flock of 20+ Long-tailed Tits in front of the hide, with a few Goldcrests among them, and about 30 Greenfinches in the adjacent hedge, but that was about it. (AH)

Wigeon (above) & Long-tailed Tits at Church Norton (AH)

Ferry Pool: There were three Avocets on the pool, with around 30 Black-tailed Godwits and 300 Lapwing in the field, and there were approximately 50 Shelduck, Shoveler and Teal along the edges and 200 Wigeon on the grass. (AH)

Shelducks on the Ferry (AH)

Chichester GPs: Ivy Lake - There were a few Common Gulls in with the Black-headed Gulls (one with a full hood) & Herring Gulls as well four Great Black-backed Gulls. Plenty of Cormorants including a group feeding voraciously on a shoal of fish were on the far side by the reeds; also 20 Great Crested Grebes, 30 Tufted Ducks, 8 Canada Geese, two Kingfishers, a Greylag Goose and five Little Egrets, with a highlight were 19 Pochard on the lee side of the lake. A few Long-tailed Tits and Great Tits in the scrub and a Green Woodpecker on the path. 

Drayton: More Pochard here with 10+, and c.20 each of Gadwall, Shoveler and Tufted Duck, a few Great Crested Grebes and Cormorants and 100s of Coot as usual.

Westhampnett: Very quiet and windswept. A few Black-headed Gulls and Tufted Ducks and a single Great Crested Grebe. (BI)

Pochards at Ivy Lake (BI)

Sunday, 29th November: A wild and windy day; cloudy with WSW gales 7-8, occasionally gusting up to force 9......

Selsey Bill (0720-1030hrs): There was a big westward movement of Kittiwakes this morning, totalling over 1400 birds, with at least 1000 of them moving between 9 and 9.45am across a wide front from the beach to the mile-basket line before passage suddenly stopped completely. There were also a Bonxie, five Red-throated Divers and 10+ Great Crested Grebes west, 150+ auks going both ways and an Eider, two Slavonian Grebes and six Great Northern Divers offshore. Full log below. (JA/SH/SR/AH/RJS et al)
Great Northern Diver - 6os
Red-throated Diver - 5W
Slavonian Grebe - 2os
Great Crested Grebe - 33W
Gannet - 3E, 7W
Brent Goose - 4E,  2W
Shelduck - 1E
Wigeon - 4W
Teal - 1W

Shoveler - 6W
Common Scoter - 1os
Eider - 1os
Red-breasted Merganser - 17W
Great Skua - 1os
Mediterranean Gull - 1W
Kittiwake - 1404W
Razorbill. - 4W
Guillemot - 2W
auk sp .- 6E, 187W

Kittiwakes (above), Great Crested Grebes off the Bill (AH)

This afternoon there was no movement at all offshore in a brief look, but the Eider (which appears to be a first-winter male) was in close and there were two Lesser Black-backed Gulls, six Mediterranean Gulls and four Common Gulls in with c200 Black-headed and c60 Herring Gulls feeding along the strandline. (AH)

Eider (above), Lesser Black-backed and Herring Gull & Mediterranean Gull off the Bill (AH)

Church Norton: There were around 200 Knot in the harbour, with about 80 Grey Plovers and 700 Dunlin on the rising tide, along with four Red-breasted Mergansers (with another three going west offshore), three Little and two Great Crested Grebes. A Sparrowhawk shot through in front of the hide and there were a couple of Goldcrests along the path, but that was about it. (AH/RJS)
A drake Goosander was off Tern Island on the high tide at 1.30pm, four Sanderlings went west along the beach and there was a total of ten Red-breasted Mergansers in the harbour and offshore. (S&SaH)

Dunlin (above) & Red-breasted Mergansers and Little Grebes at Church Norton (AH)

The Goosander couldn't be refound later on in the harbour, but there were ten Red-breasted Mergansers, the Whimbrel, a Kingfisher and three Mediterranean Gulls in with c75 Common Gulls. (AH/BI)

Common Gulls (above), Red-breasted Merganser and Teal & Whimbrel at Church Norton (BI)

Ferry Pool: There were hardly any Lapwing this morning, though there were 30+ Black-tailed Godwits in the field, and there were around 75 Shelduck along the pool's edge, as were similar of Wigeon, Teal and Shoveler, whilst around 250 Brent Geese went over west. (AH)

Shelduck on the Ferry (AH)

East Head: There were nine Sandwich Terns seen from the Hampshire side of the harbour, opposite East Head, this morning, which is a higher number than have been recorded in the last couple of winters. (KF/JM)

Saturday, 28th November: After a bright and chilly start it was a day that went steadily downhill, with gale force winds and heavy showers by the afternoon.....

Selsey Bill: (0720-0900hrs) (Obs: JA/SH/AB/C&ME/SR)
Great Northern Diver - 4os
Red-throated Diver - 1W
diver sp - 1E
Slavonian Grebe - 3os
Great Crested Grebe - 2E
Gannet - 3W
Little Egret - 1E
Brent Goose - 4E,  5W
Common Scoter - 7W
Red-breasted Merganser - 3E
Kestrel - 1p
Grey Plover - 4W
Sanderling - 2W
Dunlin - 300W (in one flock)
Arctic Skua -1W (juvenile)
Common Gull - 59W
Kittiwake - 355W
Guillemot - 5W
Razorbill - 2E, 1W
auk sp- 13E, 33W
Redpoll - 1N

Sunrise at the Bill (AB)
1400-1530hrs: Wind SW7, heavy showers (Obs: JA/BI)
Red-throated Diver - 2W
Great Northern Diver - 2os
Gannet - 37W
Great Crested Grebe - 3W
Red-breasted Merganser - 5W
Kittiwake - 41W
Guillemot - 3W, 1os
Razorbill - 4W
auk sp - 22W

Ferry Pool: There were around 160-170 Golden Plovers on and over the field this morning with as many as 1000 Lapwing, 48 Black-tailed Godwits and a few Curlews. It was quite a spectacular sight when one of the local Buzzards dropped onto the field and upset them all. Also an Avocet was on the pool with c60 Shoveler, 150 Wigeon, 75 Teal and 30 Shelduck, plus a pair of Canada Geese. (AH)

Golden Plovers (above), Black-tailed Godwits, Lapwings & Buzzard on/over the Ferry (AH)

Later on there was havoc at the Ferry - with a Buzzard buzzing the Lapwings and an immature Peregrine that swooped in and took out a Starling...then drifted off to the fields to eat it. (AB)

Peregrine & Lapwing (above) & Buzzard among Lapwings and Golden Plovers at the Ferry (AB)

Long Pool: First thing this morning a Spotted Redshank was with a dozen Redshank and couple of Grey Plovers in the channel, while a Rock Pipit was on the bank. There were half a dozen Reed Buntings and similar of Goldcrests along the hedges, while a Redwing went over and a Song Thrush was singing from the Tramway. (AH)

Spotted Redshank (above) & Rock Pipit from Long Pool (AH)

Church Norton: Two Goldeneye were in the harbour mouth this morning and a Red-breasted Merganser, a couple of Great Crested Grebes and one Little Grebe were on the water, whilst there were plenty of the regular waders, including a few Knot, and wildfowl present before the tide rose.
A Kingfisher shot through the harbour and eight Pintail went over, but small birds were few, save a Chiffchaff and one or two Goldcrests.
Offshore a Razorbill was feeding very close in and there were also  five more Red-breasted Mergansers, a couple of Great Crested Grebes and a dozen Common Gulls present. (AH)
Also, the Dartford Warbler was again in gorse near the second Several and there were a number of Kittiwakes among the large number of gulls distantly offshore. (S&SaH)

Razorbill (above) & Grey Plover at Church Norton (AH)

Birdham to Itchenor: Nothing spectacular, but had a pleasant walk through the fields from Birdham to the water at Itchenor. On or near the water were Brent Geese, Grey Plovers, Black-tailed godwits, Teal, Redshank, and a resident Kingfisher, near the sluice.

On the way back, in the Spinney were Long-tailed Tits, a pair of Goldcrests and a Redwing, whilst above was a young Buzzard. (GT)

Wednesday, 25 November 2015

25th - 27th November 2015

Friday, 27th November: Cloudy, grey and damp with a blustery SW wind and periods of rain, though still comparatively mild for the time of year.....

Selsey Bill (0815-1030hrs): There was a good westward movement early on, including a Bonxie, 7 Red-throated Divers, 92 Kittiwakes and 55 Gannets, but as the wind went round more westerly the Gannets and Kittiwakes started moving east again. Full log below.(AH/BI/JA)
Great Northern Diver - 3 os
Red-throated Diver - 7W
Gannet - 10E, 55W
Common Scoter - 7W
Red-breasted Merganser - 2W
Oystercatcher - 12p
Turnstone - 15p
Great Skua - 1W (0905)
Kittiwake - 16E, 92W
Mediterranean Gull - 5W, 5os
Common Gull 3W, 2os
auk sp - 12E, 16W

Red-throated Diver (above), Kittiwakes & Gannet at the Bill (AH)

Church Norton: A Firecrest and two Chiffchaffs were in with about a dozen Goldcrests feeding in the sedge in front of the hide this morning. There were a couple of Jays and Green Woodpeckers in the churchyard, but there were not too many other small birds about.
Two Goldeneye flew around the harbour before retreating east, and there were plenty of Brent Geese, Wigeon and roosting commoner waders on the high tide. 
Also, they have finished relaying the car-park, which looks a very great improvement on the previous 'ploughed field' finish! (AH)

Firecrest (above), Chiffchaffs, Grey Plovers and Dunlin & the newly relaid car-park at Church Norton (AH)

Ferry Pool: There were two Avocets, 12 Black-tailed Godwits and 20 Redshank among 10+ roosting Lapwing, and there were 60 Shoveler on the water, and 22 Shelduck and 50+ Wigeon and Teal along the edges. (AH)
A later visit around lunch-time produced a Greenshank, a Green Sandpiper, 5 Avocets, 30 Golden Plover, 15 Snipe, 5 Dunlin - and a first for me - a Red Breasted Merganser (IL).
Nearby, on Yeoman’s field, a Short-Eared Owl was present.(IL)

Sidlesham - St Mary's churchyard: Two Redwings, a Song Thrush, a Mistle Thrush and about 30 very flighty Blackbirds were around the churchyard today, mainly feeding on the large Ilex tree. (BI)


Thursday, 26th November: Another mild day, with a light north-westerly breeze and the odd bit of sunshine....

Selsey Bill (0815-0930hrs): (SR/PC/AH)
Great Northern Diver - 4 os
Red-throated Diver - 2E, 4W
Great Crested Grebe - 5W
Brent Goose - 3W
Mallard - 2W
Common Scoter - 3E, 15W
Red-breasted Merganser - 8W
Oystercatcher - 12p
Turntone - 8p
Razorbill - 4E
auk sp - 5E

Great Northern Diver (above), Great Crested Grebes, Red-breasted Mergansers & Turnstone at the Bill (AH)

Ferry Pool: The grey Wagtail dropped into the rife, and a Green Sandpiper was present again on the pool today, along with a dozen Black-tailed Godwits and 300+ Lapwing. There were 150 Wigeon feeding on the grass, and 50+ Shoveler and Teal and 25 Shelducks also about. (AH)

Medmerry: west side - Merlin was hunting near Marsh Barn at 12.00 today and about 75 Golden Plover came up from somewhere out in the middle of the site. (PH)

East side: There were four Great Northern Divers and a single Red-throated Diver offshore, along with 12 Common Scoter and two Guillemots, whilst along the rock groynes there was a Black Redstart and two Stonechats. (BFF)

Ham Farm to Chainbridge - One Corn Bunting was present along the banks this morning, along with 20+ Skylarks and Meadow Pipits, whilst there was a pair of Stonechats near the farm and another near the Chainbridge, and several hundred Pied Wagtails on a recently ploughed field.
On the tidal pools there were c120 Pintail, along with slightly lesser numbers of Wigeon and Teal, a few dozen Brent Geese, and 30+ Grey Plovers and Lapwings, plus a flock of nine Golden Plover went over. (AH)

Corn Bunting (above), Pintail, Pintail and Teal, Stonechats & Pied Wagtail at Medmerry (AH)

Pagham Spit/ Lagoon: The five Pale-bellied Brent Geese were in the same spot as yesterday by the bench at the south end of Pagham Lagoon accompanied by plenty of Dark-bellied Brents, Teal, Wigeon, Redshank and Turnstones. On the Lagoon itself were plenty of Tufted Ducks, Coots and Little Grebes., whilst the three Goldeneye, (two males and a female) were on on the Little Lagoon on the spit.
Along the Spit there were a large mixed flock of Greenfinches & Linnets, six or seven Stonechats and two Chiffchaffs. In the harbour there were thirty Pintail and in the roost to the back of Tern Island were good numbers of Knot and Grey Plover. (BI)

Pale-bellied Brent Geese (above), Goldeneyes, Wigeon & Grey Plover and Dunlin from Pagham Spit (BI)

East Head/Snowhill Marsh: It was not as windy as forecast, although little in the way of sunshine, making it a fairly pleasant day. Very little noted offshore in the channels except a few Great Crested Grebes and nine Red-breasted Mergansers. From the northern end of the head I scoped two Short-eared Owls hunting over Pilsey Island with another 2 hunting in the dunes and salt-marsh around the head. Nice flock of 25 Greenfinch feeding along the tide line with 20 Skylarks and 4 Stonechats. 
On Snowhill Marsh there was another Short eared Owl (put up by a dog) hunting around the southern edge of the bushes. Single Water Rail, 20 Common Snipe, 30 Golden Plover and 2 Greenshank were the highlights. (BFF)

Wednesday, 25th November: A reasonably mild and largely dry day, mainly cloudy but with some hints of the sun and a light-moderate NW wind....

Selsey Bill (0740-1150hrs): There were a minimum of eight Great Northern Divers offshore this morning, including six together on the sea when a couple of others went over west. Otherwise it was quieter than yesterday, with a few Brent Geese, Common Scoters and Red-breasted Mergansers going west and a few Gannets and auks going east. Full log below. (C&ME/AH)
Great Northern Diver - 8 os       
Gannet - 14E, 5W
Great Crested Grebe - 7E, 4W 
Brent Goose - 19W
Common Scoter - 9E, 11W, 8os
Red-breasted Merganser - 11E, 4W
Razorbill - 10E, 3W
Guillemot - 2W
Auk sp - 15E, 6W
Mediterranean Gull  - 3W                       
Goldfinch - 21W                         


Great Northern Divers (above) & Common Scoters at the Bill (AH)

St Mary's churchyard, Sidlesham: The Lesser Redpoll was back, feeding in the Alder along with 2 Siskins and 15 Goldfinches. Also 2 Redwings, 2 Jays, c25 Goldcrests and a vocal Mistle Thrush present. (SR)

East Beach Pond: While the locals were marvelling over the Mute Swans a highly vocal Green Woodpecker flew in and then out again. Another patch tick for me, this is a rare bird for East Beach. (SR) 

Chalder and Marsh Farms: There were 2 Grey Wagtails, a Green Sandpiper (in wet area next to the muck heaps), c30 Curlews including our friend 'milky', 3 Chiffchaffs, 12 Long-tailed Tits, c20 Chaffinches, c40 Pied Wagtails, c20 Goldfinches, another Jay, an impressive flock of c200 Starlings and a Brown Hare around the farms. (SR)
Ferry Pool: There were arond 20 Black-tailed Godwits on the pool this morning, plus at least 400 Lapwing and the usual Teal, Shoveler and Wigeon numbers, plus a few Shelduck. (AH)

Long Pool: There was a drake Gadwall on the pool itself, whilst a Kingfisher and a Grey Heron were in the rifes, and there were a dozen or more Goldcrests, a couple of Wrens and a few Reed Buntings along the bushes. (AH)

Gadwall (above), Goldcrest & Grey Heron along Long Pool (AH)

Pagham Spit/Lagoon: This morning there was, as well as a handful of our usual Dark-bellied Brent Geese, Wigeons, Teal, 1000 Dunlin and some other waders, most interestingly, a close-knit family of five Pale-bellied Brent Geese on the massive high tide in the Lagoon-corner of Pagham Harbour. The Pale-bellied Brent Geese kept close as a family - both parents and three juveniles - to begin with swim-feeding, but getting out sometimes along the tideline, then back in the water, fairly unfazed by passers-by.
There were three Goldeneye on Pagham Lagoon, two males and a redhead, presumed female. (ARK per SOS)