Sunday, 10 December 2017

10th - 13th December 2017

Wednesday, 13th December: A fairly typical English winter's day - cold and damp under grey skies, with persistent spotty rain driven on by a westerly breeze.....

Selsey Bill: (0800-0900hrs) (AH)
Red-throated Diver - 2E
Great Northern Diver - 1E, 1W, 2os
Slavonian Grebe - 2os, then E
Great Grested Grebe - 9W
Gannet - 7E, 25W
Shag - 1E
Brent Goose - 1E
Common Scoter - 3E
Red-breasted Merganser - 2E, 2os
Kittiwake - 2W
Razorbill - 1W, 1os

Great Northern Diver (above) & Gannet past the Bill (AH)

Ferry Pool: There were 14 Golden Plovers with c300 Lapwing, eight Shelduck and five Redshanks at the back, with a coupe of Snipe in the reeds, c80 Teal on the water and c250 Wigeon in the arable field.
Also, the Spotted Redshank and three Little Grebes were in the channel opposite and a pair of Gadwall were in the rife. (AH)

Spotted Redshank (above), Golden Plover and Lapwings, Gadwall, Little Grebes & Wigeon around the Ferry (AH)

Church Norton: The Velvet Scoter was still in the harbour, along with half a dozen Little and Great Crested Grebes and a couple of Red-breasted Mergansers, whilst the Whimbrel was still in its usual area.
A Firecrest and a couple of Goldcrests were along the path at the back of the churchyard and half a dozen Jays were being very active in the voicinity.
There was nothing save a lonely Teal on the sea, though a Red-throated Diver, a Red-breasted Merganser, a Mediterranean Gull and two Gannets flew west offshore and half a dozen Skylarks and Meadow Pipits and c100 Greenfinches were along the spit. (AH)

Velvet Scoter and Little Grebes (above), Red-throated Diver, Whimbrel, Meadow Pipit & Greenfinches at Church Norton (AH)

Tuesday, 12th December: A complete opposite to yesterday, if still struggling to get above freezing, with bright sun and barely a breath of wind all morning, though clouding up later.....

Ferry Pool: Just a Snipe, a Redshank, a Mallard and five Moorhens on the pool this morning, with c50 Wigeon on  the field and similar of Wigeon and Teal in the channel opposite. (AH)

Snipe on the Ferry (AH)

North Wall: The Breech Pool held mainly Wigeon and Mallard, though c30 Black-tailed Godwits and a Ruff dropped in (out of view!) at the back. A Rock Pipit was by the sluice, a Kingfisher flew through and a Fieldfare, four Song Thrushes, four Yellowhammers and a dozen Reed Buntings were along the bushes.
In White's Creek there were two Spotted Redshank, c100 Lapwing, c100 Wigeon and 20+ Redshank and Black-tailed Godwit. (AH)

Spotted Redshank and Redshank (above), Rock Pipit, Yellowhammer, Fieldfare & Reed Bunting around North Wall (AH)

East side, Lagoon and Spit: About 2000 Brent Geese dropped into the harbour, and there were large numbers of many of the commoner species, including Pintail, Wigeon, Knot and Dunlin, plus one or two Bar-tailed Godwits. Also, along the hedgerow by the Slipe field there were 200+ Linnets and 20+ Reed Buntings.
The lagoon was fairly empty, with just the drake Goldeneye and a female Pochard of note among the usual Little Grebes, Tufted Ducks and Mallard.
The drake joined the two redhead Goldeneye in the harbour, but there wasn't much else beyond a pair of Red-breasted Mergansers and half a dozen Little and Great Crested Grebes, with just a Kingfisher, half a dozen Skylarks and a Meadow Pipit along the spit. (AH)

Goldeneye (above), Pintail, Red-breasted Merganser, Pochard, Kingfisher, Linnets & Skylark around east side of the harbour (AH)

Honer Reservoir: Twenty Shelduck dropped in on the reservoir and two Egyptian Geese were on the maize field this morning, as were c100 Skylarks and c20 Meadow Pipits. 
Along the hedges there were at least 30 Fieldfare, a handful of Redwing and 40 Reed Buntings, plus a few Linnets, Song Thrushes and Blackbirds. (AH)

Redwing (above) & Fieldfare at Honer Reservoir (AH)

Medmerry: Stilt Pool area - There were six Barnacle Geese with the Brent Geese on the reserve, opposite the Stilt Pool, this afternoon. (IL)

Church Norton: A quick walk at lunchtime found three Shovelers on the 2nd Several - one drake and two females, and there were also two Bullfinches in the bushes near the concrete wall. (AW)

Bullfinch (above) & Shovelers at Church Norton (AW)

Monday, 11th December: A truly horrible morning, with a near gale-force and bitingly cold north-easterly blowing, and persistent heavy sleety rain....

Selsey Bill: (0800-0915hrs) (AH)
Red-throated Diver - 1E
Great Northern Diver - 2E, 1W
Gannet - 14E, 34W
Common Scoter - 2E
Red-breasted Merganser - 1E
Common Gull - 2W
Kittiwake - 1E, 2W
Razorbill - 1W

Gannet at the Bill (AH)

Medmerry: Toe End - The regular flock of 30 or so Common Scoters was still offshore, whilst a male Velvet Scoter went west and ten or more Gannets went east. (SH)

Ferry Pool: There were seven Shovelers, six Shelducks, nine Redshank, c60 Teal and c150 Lapwing around the pool and field, whilst there were a Spotted Redshank, a Little Egret and two Little Grebes in the channel opposite. (AH)

Spotted Redshank (above), Little Egret & Shovelers and Redshank around the Ferry (AH)

Church Norton: The Velvet Scoter was once again in the main channel and four Red-breasted Mergansers were towards the harbour mouth. Out on the mud there were three Bar-tailed Godwits, c100 Knot and c500 Dunlin, plus at least 20 Shelducks, whilst the Whimbrel was in its usual area and 16 Red-legged Partridges were along Rectory Lane. (AH/AW)

Bar-tailed Godwit (above), Knot and Dunlin, Dunlin, Shelducks & Red-legged Partridges at Church Norton (AH)

Chi GPs - Drayton Pits: At least 125 Shovelers from the railway gates this morning along with two Great Crested Grebes, two Cormorants, 25 Tufted Ducks and 36 Pochards. (BI)

Sunday, 10th December: A complete contrast to yesterday, with a strong gale-force westerly blowing all morning and intermittent heavy rain....

Selsey Bill: There wasn't much moving beyond a few Gannets and the odd Kittiwake, and there were also three Sanderlings on the beach. Full log below......
0745-0930hrs:   (SH/IP/AH)
Red-throated Diver - 1E
Great Crested Grebe - 4W
Gannet - 6E, 44W
Teal - 2E
Red-breasted Merganser - 2W, 1os
Sanderling - 3 ob
Razorbill - 1os
auk sp - 1E
Kittiwake - 4W
Mediterranean Gull - 1os
1300-1430hrs: (SH)
Red-throated Diver - 2E
Great Crested Grebe - 1W, 1os
Gannet - 10E, 13W
Red-breasted Merganser - 7W, 2os
Common Scoter - 10 os
Kittiwake - 7W
Mediterranean Gull - 1E

Sanderlings (above), Gannet & Great Crested Grebe at the Bill (AH)

Ferry Pool: About 40 Teal, 20 Wigeon, five Shelduck and a Redshank were on the pool, with c30 Canada Geese and c300 Lapwing on the field. (AH)

Wigeon and Teal (above) & Redshank at the Ferry (AH)

Church Norton: The Velvet Scoter was back in the main channel this morning, and there were half a dozen Red-breasted Mergansers and similar of Little and Great Crested Grebes present, too. The big flock of - c150 - Knot was back on the mud with at least 500 Dunlin, and at least 500 Brent Geese were on the far side.
A Peregrine was see to take a Dunlin and a Sparrowhawk was seen to take a Redshank, both kills being dispatched with extreme efficiency!
Very few small birds were seen, though a Firecrest was with two or three Goldcrests in one of the sheltered bits of hedgerow, along with 40 Greenfinches, and a Meadow Pipit was on the beach. (AH/IP)
Later there were two Goldeneye on the second Several, plus two Mediterranean Gulls offshore. (SH)

Velvet Scoter (above), Knot, Dunlin & Greenfinches at Church Norton (AH)

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