Friday, 7 April 2017

7th - 9th April 2017

Sunday, 9th AprilAn altogether better day, with plenty of sunshine and a light easterly breeze........

Selsey BillAfter yesterday's white-out there was some genuine movement today, including the first three Little Terns of the year, 30+ Common Terns, 300+ Sandwich Terns, 20+ Little Gulls (including a flock of 13), three Arctic Skuas, an Avocet, nine Velvet Scoters and 300+ Brent Geese. Full log below....
0600-1135hrs: (JA/SH/PB/AGB/IP/PM/AH/M&KG/SH et al)
Red-throated Diver - 4E
Great Northern Diver - 5os
Fulmar - 3E, 9W
Gannet - 23E, 6W
Canada Goose - 2E
Brent Goose - 312E
Shelduck - 2E, 4W
Eider - 2os
Velvet Scoter - 9E
Common Scoter - 211E, 6W
Red-breasted Merganser - 1E
Gadwall - 4E
Teal - 8E
Avocet - 1E
Bar-tailed Godwit - 1E
Whimbrel - 10E
Peregrine - 1 with prey, area
Arctic Skua - 3E (all d/p)
Little Tern - 3E
Common Tern - 32E
Sandwich Tern - 357E
Little Gull - 21E
Kittiwake - 1E
Mediterranean Gull - 7E
Common Gull - 7E
Swallow - 6N
Pied/alba Wagtail - 4N
Wheatear - 2 gardens
Linnet - 9N

Peregrine with Starling prey (above), Common Scoter, Avocet, Little Gulls, Brent Geese & Wheatears at the Bill (AH)

Happy sea-watchers at the Bill (AH)

Park Farm, Selsey: A Willow Warbler, three Swallows and two Buzzards were around the farm, and a Blackcap was in our garden in the north of the village. (S&SaH)

Ferry Pool: Just four Shelduck on the pool this morning. (AH)
Later the first report of a Nightingale with one singing near the Visitor centre.(IL)

Church Norton: Not too much evidence of migration, though a Whitethroat was at the back of the horse field, a Swallow was over the harbour and up to half a dozen Wheatears were along the beach, but beyond that there were just the odd singing Blackcap, Chiffchaff and Willow Warbler.
The two lingering Eider were offshore this morning, two Gadwall flew around the Severals and in the harbour there were five Avocets, two Sanderling, the Whimbrel, up to 20 Sandwich Terns and up to 50 Mediterranean Gulls, whilst a Fulmar appeared out of the harbour mouth and west east. 
There were lots of butterflies about, too, including an Orange-tip, several Brimstones, a Comma and 20+ Speckled Woods. (AH/IP/S&SaH)

Sandwich Tern (above), Wheatear & Ringed Plover at Church Norton (AH)

Medmerry, Easton Lane to the Stilt Pools: It was generally quiet along the banks apart from the singing Skylarks and a few Meadow Pipits, Yellowhammers and Linnets. At the Stilt pools were two Little Ringed Plovers, two pairs of Gadwall, 40 Avocets and 50 Black-headed Gulls. One Great Northern Diver was still offshore and there were two more Little Ringed Plovers along the beach. (BI) Later a Redstart was at the pools. (RN)

Saturday, 8th AprilEventually it was a fine and sunny day, with a light E/SE breeze, but not before most of the morning was written off to rolling banks of dense and persistent fog.....

Selsey Bill: There can be few things more frustrating or irritating for the sea-watchers than foggy conditions on a day that, superficially at least, holds promise..... but today was such a day! A few Sandwich Terns were moving east, as did a Whimbrel, but the dire visibility put an end to any sea-watching, though a couple of Wheatears dropped in later in the morning, and a couple of Meadow Pipits also arrived. Full log below....
0630-1100hrs: ....(JA/SH/PB/PM/IP/AH/OM et al)
Great Northern Diver - 1os
Brent Goose - 1W
Turnstone - 20 ob
Whimbrel - 1E
Oystercatcher - 5W
Sandwich Tern - 15E
Mediterranean Gull - 4E
Sparrowhawk - 1 gardens
Meadow Pipit - 2N
Chiffchaff - 1 gardens
Wheatear - 2N dropped onto beach

Sandwich Tern (AH) (above) & Herring Gull (SH) at the Bill

The fog rolling in from the east (SH) (above) and the log-keeper (JA) waiting for the fog to clear at the Bill (AH)

 Some of the regulars kicking their heels, waiting forlornly for the fog to lift..... (OM)

A later sea-watch was more successful.....
1200-1300hrs: (SH)
Red-throated Diver - 1E
Gannet - 3W, 1os
Brent Goose - 41E
Common Scoter - 42E
Sandwich Tern - 10E, 2W
Common Tern - 1W
Common Gull - 1E
Pied/alba Wagtail - 1N

Swallow - 2N

(1730-1840hrs) (JA/SH)
Great Northern Diver - 6os
Red-throated Diver - 2E
Gannet - 2E, 1W, 1os
Red-breasted Merganser - 5E
Whimbrel - 1E
Common Gull - 2E
Sandwich Tern - 6E, 1W
Common Tern - 1E

Selsey: A Willow Warbler and a Blackcap were present in a garden to the north of the town (SH).

Selsey: Northcommon Farm: After cutting my losses at the Bill I tried at the farm   -  where at least the fog had lifted – but it was dead and all I logged were a couple of Curlews, a Green Woodpecker and a single Willow Warbler. With every man and his dog now out in the fine weather it was time to call it a day and head home for a cup of tea! (OM)

Ferry Pool/Long Pool: A Grey Wagtail flew down the rife, where a Cetti's Warbler was calling, and a Lapwing was displaying over the field, whilst on the pool there were a pair of Avocets, 12 Shelduck and six Teal. (AH) A Green Sandpiper was briefly present this morning. (N.Bond) Along the Long Pool reeds were three Sedge Warblers, a dozen Linnets and and a pair of Reed Buntings. (BI/N.Bond) 

Avocets & Shelduck on Ferry (AH), Sedge Warbler at the Long Pool (BI)

Church Norton: There were at least six Sandwich Terns in the harbour, with another three east along the beach, but not too much else beyond at least ten Mediterranean Gulls and a few Teal, Black-tailed Godwits and Curlews.
There were a couple of singing Blackcaps and Chiffchaffs and some very active Goldfinches around the hedges, a Stock Dove by the concrete wall and a few Linnets along the beach, but that was about it. (AH)
Later around Park Farm there were 2 Buzzards and a Sparrowhawk, whilst in the harbour were a Peregrine and 10 Sandwich Terns. plus 2 Swallows and a Sparrowhawk over the Severals and a Blackcap nearby. (SH) There were two Firecrests around the churchyard gates this morning. (N.Bond)

Sandwich Terns (above), Stock Dove, Linnet & Goldfinches at Church Norton (AH)

Medmerry, Easton Lane to the Stilt Pools: A Great Spotted Woodpecker was drumming by the first sluice and a Green Woodpecker was in the poplars but generally quiet on the sluice pool and mud in this area. Plenty of Meadow Pipits and Linnets, a pair of Reed Buntings and a few Yellowhammers were along the banks on the way down with singing Skylarks overhead and on the fenceline. On the pools were c.40 Avocets, two Little Ringed Plovers, six Mediterranean Gulls, one of which was ringed, and a sole female Wigeon. Offshore, 16 Common Scoters went east and there were two Great Northern Divers on the sea. Three Swallows came in from the sea and were over the beach-side pools for a while and there were 12 more Avocets out in the reserve. (BI)

Yellowhammer, Little Ringed Plover & Mediterranean Gulls at Medmerry (BI)

Medmerry: Porthole Farm - There were at least two House Martins in with three or four Sand Martins and a dozen Swallows feeding over the bare fields this evening. Also about were at least a dozen Mediterranean Gulls, a couple of Yellowhammers and Linnets and a few Pied Wagtails, and there were another couple of Swallows on wires at Oakhurst Farm. (AH)

Swallows (above) & Mediterranean Gull at Medmerrry (AH)

Friday, 7th April: The spell of fine weather continues, with another clear and sunny day with barely a breath of wind.....

Selsey Bill: Passage remains very slight at the moment, with fine conditions not conducive to grounding migrants on the coast. As ever though, a few bits were on the move, including four Red-throated Divers, four Shoveler and 18 Sandwich Terns east, and 10+ Swallows in off the sea, whilst eight Great Northern Divers were offshore. Full log below...
(0600-1000hrs): (JA/C&ME/AH/TR/RS)
Great Northern Diver - 8os
Red-throated Diver - 4E, 1W
Fulmar - 1W
Gannet - 17E, 6W, 10os
Shag - 1E
Brent Goose - 3E
Shoveler - 4E
Common Scoter - 2E, 17W
Red-breasted Merganser - 3E, 1W
Oystercatcher - 3E, 2W
Sanderling - 2E
Turnstone - 2p
Common Gull - 8E
Mediterranean Gull - 7E
Sandwich Tern - 18E, 4W
Razorbill - 1os
Swallow - 11N
Linnet - 3S
Carrion Crow - 2N

Sandwich Tern (above) & young Herring Gull waiting for breakfast at the Bill (AH)

(1045-1225hrs) (HR/DM)
Great Northern Diver - 2os
Gannet - 1E, 1W
Cormorant - 2E, 3W
Brent Goose - 1E
Eider - 2os
Sparrowhawk - 1p flew through the Bill garden
Oystercatcher - 2W
Sandwich Tern - 2E, 4W
Swallow - 5N

1545-1715hrs: (C&ME)
Red-throated Diver - 1E
Gannet - 5E, 2W
Brent Goose - 37E 
Grey Plover - 2E
Sandwich Tern - 14W
Swallow - 1N

Ferry Pool/Ferry Channel: A Little Ringed Plover was at the back, and there were also 16 Teal and four Shelduck on the pool and a pair of Gadwall flew out from the field. 
The Spotted Redshank and Greenshank were in Ferry Channel again and a Grey Wagtail flew over, whilst it was quiet around the tramway, with just a singing Willow Warbler, three Blackcaps and six Chiffchaffs of note.(AH) Later on there were three Sedge Warblers and a Reed Warbler in the reeds along the Long Pool. (BI)

Spotted Redshank (above), Greenshank, Spotted Redshank and Greenshank & Blackcap around Ferry Channel (AH) Sedge Warbler, bottom, by the Long Pool (BI)

Medmerry: Ham Farm - It was generally very quiet, with only one Corn Bunting in evidence, plus a couple of Skylarks along the banks, a couple of Willow Warblers and a Chiffchaff singing around the buildings, a pair of Buzzards over and c30 Mediterranean Gulls among the flock following a tractor on the cultivated fields. (AH)

Chiffchaff (above) & Buzzard at Medmerry (AH)

Medmerry (west): Two Garganey on the Stilt pools, flew out onto the reserve (1545hrs) (IL)

North Wall: Two Stock Doves were in Pagham Churchyard.

On White's Creek there were 28 Redshank and a Spotted Redshank that is rapidly changing into breeding plumage. On Breech Pool were 5 Gadwall, a Shoveler, 65 Teal, 140 Black-tailed Godwits and a Snipe, plus 2 singing Sedge Warblers and 3 Cetti's Warblers along the Wall and a Chiffchaff and Blackcap at Owl Copse. On Honer reservoir were 19 Tufted Ducks and 2 Shoveler. A Red Kite was quartering fields along Honer Lane until seen off by the local corvid mafia, and Brown Hares were in several of the back fields. (JDW/OM)

Out in the harbour, viewed from the North Wall, the high tide wader roost held 320 Grey Plover, 20+ Knot, 60+ Dunlin, another 64 Black-tailed Godwits and 22 Bar-tailed Godwits, with 76 Shelduck and 5 Brent Geese nearby. Around the stables, 2 recently-arrived Swallows were inspecting their chosen home and 2 Greylag Geese flew noisily over, whilst a Kestrel  was hunting nearby. A good selection of the commoner butterflies included Brimstone, Small Tortoiseshell, Peacock, Comma and Speckled Wood.(OM)

 Swallow, Kestrel and Speckled Wood around the North Wall. (OM)

 Spotted Redshank in White's Creek and Black-tailed Godwits on the Breech Pool (JDW)

Northcommon Farm: There was very little here today, save two singing Willow Warblers and an odd looking Jackdaw. (AB)

Jackdaw at Northcommon Farm (AB)

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