Thursday, 17 March 2016

17th - 19th March 2016

Saturday, 19th March: Much as yesterday's weather.... mainly cloudy and dull, with high pressure still dominant and a cool, moderate NE wind persisting....

Selsey Bill (0700-1030hrs): (Obs:  (C&ME/JA/SR/AH) There was a fair passage of over 100 Common Scoter east this morning plus more on the sea, and a few Gannets, Red-throated Divers and Red-breasted Mergansers were heading east, as well, though there was no repeat of yesterday's visible migration. Also there were still half a dozen Great Northern Divers, the Eider and two Common Seals offshore. Full log below....
Red-throated Diver - 4E, 1os
Great Northern Diver - 6os
Diver sp - 2E
Gannet - 22E, 6W
Brent Goose - 50E
Eider - 1os                            
Red-breasted Merganser - 3W, 18os
Common Scoter - 121E, 46os
Teal - 2E
Shoveler - 2E
Peregrine - 1 loitering
Auk sp - 1E, 10W                       
Starling - 53N     

Common Scoter (above), Red-breasted Mergansers & Common Seal at the Bill (AH)

Ferry Pool: At last, a summer visitor! A Little Ringed Plover was on the pool early on, but was not present later, but there wasn't much else about - just four Avocets, eight Black-tailed Godwits, six Shelduck, 20 Teal and about 50 Wigeon that flew into Ferry Channel. (AH)

Little Ringed Plover on the Ferry (AH)

Church Norton: A male Black Redstart was in the horse field at Park Farm, Selsey with the female type bird that was there previously still present, and two Grey Herons dropped in nearby.

There were over 2,000 Brent Geese flying over the North Wall, the harbour held a female Goldeneye and at least ten Pintail at the top end of the harbour, whilst offshore was a male Red-breasted Merganser and two Common Scoter flew through. (IP)

Black Redstart at Park Farm, Selsey (IP)

North Wall: A Spotted Redshank was in White's Creek (and three had been present earlier) with about 50 Redshank and Black-tailed Godwits, with 75 of the latter, along with four Snipe and 60 Teal on the Breech Pool. Also, up to a dozen Chiffchaffs were in the sheltered hedges around Owl Copse, and a huge flock - 2000+? of Brent Geese came into the reservoir from the back fields. (AH/IB) 

Spotted Redshank (above), Snipe & Brent Geese from the North Wall (AH)

East side/Pagham Lagoon: In the harbour there were a pair of Goldeneye, 15 Pintail, a dozen Knot, 250 Black-tailed Godwits and plenty of Curlew and Grey Plover, whilst along the hedges of the Slipe Field there were 20+ Reed Bunting and Linnet, plus a couple of Chiffchaffs.
There was a redhead Goldeneye on the Lagoon, along with six Pochard, a couple of Great Crested Grebes and still plenty of Little Grebes and Tufted Duck. (AH)

Goldeneye (above) & Reed Bunting from east side of harbour (AH)

Medmerry: Easton Lane - Late this afternoon around 25 Fieldfares flew off the uncropped fields and over the farm to some pines to roost. also a Green Sandpiper was in the first pool. (AH)

Friday, 18th March: A much cloudier day, but with high pressure and the cool NE wind still prevailing....

Selsey Bill (0715-1230hrs): (Obs: C&ME/SR/JA/AH/BI) An interesting morning, dominated by plenty of Meadow Pipits - in excess of 400 by 10.30am, and a few Pied Wagtails coming in off the sea. Other birds of note included some Red-throated Divers, three Eider and 10+ Gannet, some Common Scoter and Brent Geese east (including a flock of the latter that came in from way out), three Chiffchaffs (including one off the sea) in the Bill House garden and the usual four plus Great Northern Divers and a couple of Sandwich Terns offshore. Full log below....
Red-throated Diver - 8E, 1W
Great Northern Diver - 4os
Diver sp - 1E, 1W
Slavonian Grebe - 1os
Great Crested Grebe - 1W, 1os
Fulmar - 1W
Gannet - 12E, 1W
Brent Goose - 71E
Eider - 3E, 1os

Red-breasted Merganser - 12E, 5W, 4os
Common Scoter - 67E 
Curlew - 11E, 1W             
Dunlin - 10E              
Sanderling - 2ob  
Sparrowhawk - 1 area           
Sandwich Tern - 1E, 1W    
Pied/alba Wagtail - 26N  

Meadow Pipit - 625N       
Chiffchaff - 3 gardens

Eider (above), Chiffchaff & Brent Geese passing the 'Mile Basket' at the Bill (AH)

Selsey (West): A flock of 37 Curlews was feeding in the fields (BI)

Ferry Pool: A Green Sandpiper was with five Lapwings, and there were two Avocets, nine Black-tailed Godwits, four Redshank, four Shelduck and a dozen Teal this morning. Early on 30 or so Grey Plover and 50 or so Dunlin came over from Medmerry direction heading for the harbour, and also three Meadow Pipits went over. (AH)

Green Sandpiper with Lapwings (above) & Avocet and Shelduck on the Ferry (AH)

Church Norton: Not much beyond a few Black-tailed Godwits, Grey Plover, Curlew and Wigeon in  the harbour, but there was a flock of c150 Brent Geese sat huddled on the foreshore and was joined by another 30 birds that came in from well offshore and circled the harbour a couple of times before settling in with them. They certainly behaved as though they were passing through and not our regular birds. (AH)

Brent Geese at Church Norton (AH)

Medmerry: (East side): Fairly quiet although the/a Black Redstart was on the rocks near the caravans, there were also a few Pied Wagtails and about 40 Meadow Pipits arrived from the sea. The breach area was similarly quiet with just one or two Little Egrets on show. (BI)

(West side): Again quiet. The Peregrine was out on the reserve, there were 42 Avocets on the stilt pools with a few Tufted Ducks and the Black-headed Gulls, a few Skylarks were singing and Meadow Pipits were along the path. (BI)

Thursday 17th March: A better day than yesterday, bright and with some sunshine, but still with a strong and cool north-easterly holding up migration.....

Selsey Bill (0715-1315hrs): sunny, NE4. (Obs: C&ME/C&JM/OM/AH) Several Fulmars and Common Scoter were moving, plus three Great Northern Divers, a Slavonian Grebe and a Great Crested Grebe offshore; but boy, it really was very quiet and hard to maintain the enthusiasm over 6 hours....the main excitement being counting the Meadow Pipits arriving from the sea! A certain observer was the cause of some amusement with his new (angler's) chair, whilst those that strolled along the beach to the local WC's stole the show with an arriving Grey Wagtail and a Red-legged Partridge in the gardens. Full log below....
Red-throated Diver - 1E
Great Northern Diver - 3os
Slavonian Grebe - 1os
Great Crested Grebe - 1E, 2os
Fulmar - 3E, 1W
Gannet - 1E, 1W
Brent Goose - 1W
Red-breasted Merganser - 13E, 4W, 4os
Common Scoter - 11E
Mallard - 2p (local birds)
Kestrel - 1 over gardens
Curlew - 1E
Red-legged Partridge - 1 gardens
Meadow Pipit - 57N
Grey Wagtail - 1N
Song Thrush - 2 gardens

Turnstones unconcerned by the presence of a lorry delivering shingle (above) & Great Crested Grebe at the Bill (AH)

It was something of a team effort getting OM settled in his new chair for the long sea-watching season ahead! (AH)

Selsey, East Beach: A Stonechat was along the beach this afternoon, not the migrant I was hoping for but a migrant nevertheless. (SR)

Ferry Pool/Long Pool: Not much change again, with two Avocets, ten Black-tailed Godwits, four Redshank and 25 Lapwing on the pool, plus 100 each of Wigeon and Brent Geese on the field, before the latter decamped to the water. 
Not much along the Long Pool, though there were a couple of singing Chiffchaffs and one or two Goldcrests and Long-tailed Tits. (AH/OM)

Brent Geese (above) & Black-tailed Godwits at the Ferry (AH)

Medmerry: Stilt Pool - The Avocet count had risen to 36 birds this morning, though otherwise very little of note. (PLS)

Breach area - Equally quiet here, with just a Meadow Pipit and a Pied Wagtail on the ground, and just a Red-breasted Merganser, two Curlew and ten Shelducks on the pools. (AH)

Meadow Pipit (above) & Red-breasted Mergansers at Medmerry (AH)

Church Norton: The Whimbrel and a few Curlews were about this afternoon: (M. Rose)

Whimbrel (above) & Curlews at Church Norton (M. Rose)

North Wall: A Spotted Redshank was at the Breech Pool thhis afternoon. (M. Rose)

Spotted Redshank (above) & Roe Deer from the North Wall (M. Rose)

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