Monday, 10 September 2018

10th - 12th September 2018

Wednesday, 12th September: A much colder morning in the fresh northerly breeze, with a bit of drizzly rain under mostly grey skies.....

Selsey Bill: (C&ME)
Turnstone - 17p
Mediterranean Gull - 16os
Sandwich Tern - 16os
Swallow - 186E
House Martin - 1E

Ferry Pool: The Little Stint was showing well again this morning, and the two juvenile Little Ringed Plovers re-appeared, too. Also present were 88 Lapwing, 16 Shelduck, a dozen or so Black-tailed Godwits and c40 Teal, with a Common Sandpiper in the channel opposite. (AH/CRJ)

Little Stint (above), Little Ringed Plover, Common Sandpiper & Shelduck at the Ferry (AH)

Church Norton: The only migrants seen were two Spotted Flycatchers, three Whitethroats and a Chiffchaff around the hide and Mound area, where also four Ravens went over together, heading east, with five Jays and a flock of 50 Linnets also in the area.
The two Peregrines were in the harbour, as were a few Pintail and lots of Little Egrets, Redshank and Curlew, plus 75 Oystercatchers and two Greenshank, whilst c40 Grey Plovers were sat out on the shingle off the beach until the tide pushed them off. (AH/CRJ/PC)

Raven (above), Redshank & Grey Plovers at Church Norton (AH)

Medmerry: Easton Lane to the Stilt Pool - The banks were very quiet early this morning, with a lone Wheatear and a dozen Swallows heading west being the only migrants noted, though a handful of Corn Buntings and a dozen Yellowhammers were around their favoured bushes.
The Stilt Pool held two Little Stints, seven Dunlin and a few Lapwing and Black-tailed Godwits, along with large numbers of wildfowl before they dispersed, including c30 Wigeon, c60 Gadwall and c200 Teal.
Several hundred Canada Geese were roaming around the reserve, whilst around the poplars area there was a Greenshank, c40 Black-tailed Godwits, ten Shelduck and at least 200 Teal. (AH)

Little Stint and Dunlin (above), Yellowhammer and Corn Bunting, Corn Bunting & Canada Geese at Medmerry (AH)

Tuesday, 11th September: A very grey and windy day, if still fairly mild, with a strong westerly blowing and mostly heavy cloud cover.....

Firstly, a response from the Civil Aviation Authority to AB, regarding the very low-flying plane that repeatedly spooked all the birds in the harbour, back in January. Hopefully the pilot has learnt his lesson!

Thank you for using the online form regarding G-MZPJ low flying at Pagham Bird Sanctuary on 10/01/2018. Please accept our apologies for the delay in responding. In some cases we will need to seek specialist advice from the relevant department in the CAA which can take longer if your email is more complex.
The Civil Aviation Authority’s General Aviation Unit assessed your report and subsequently asked the pilot to come into the CAA for an interview.
After the matter was put to the pilot he responded by saying that he was always very conscious about low flying and that he was aware of the 500 foot rule and always flies with a chart. He accepted that he disturbed the birds and he apologised for the concern and disturbance he caused you.
The GAU took the appropriate action by asking the pilot to undergo at least two hours of practical navigation training . This has now been completed to a high standard and the CAA are satisfied that the pilot has now been fully briefed. The pilot has assured them that in the future he will avoid flying low over Bird Sanctuary’s. 
We thank you for bringing it to our attention and I will ensure that your report is logged onto our complaints and enquiries database for future reference.

Selsey Bill: Very little was moving this morning, though at least 16 Sandwich Terns and 50+ Mediterranean Gulls were lingering offshore. Full log later. (AH/C&ME)
Gannet - 34E, 25W
Common Scoter - 31E
Turnstone - 9p
Mediterranean Gull - 3E, 50os
Sandwich Tern - 28os
Swallow - 2W

(1640-1740hrs) My worst ever sea-watch! (SH)
Gannet - 1E, 1W
Sandwich Tern - 1E

Sandwich Tern (above) & Mediterranean Gulls at the Bill (AH)

Ferry Pool: The Little Stint was present early on (A McIntyre), but not later, when there was just the usual mix of c80 Lapwings, c20 Black-tailed Godwits, c50 Teal and half a dozen Shelducks, plus two Reed Buntings over and a handful of Yellow Wagtails among the cattle. (AH)

Teal on the Ferry (AH)

This evening there were two Spotted Redshanks, three Whimbrel and a dozen Black-tailed Godwits in the channel opposite, with 20+ Sand Martins and Swallows feeding low over the harbour. (AH)

Spotted Redshank (above) & Whimbrel in Ferry Channel (AH)

North Wall: All 12 Cattle Egrets were in the harbour off Owl Copse early on, before flying back towards the fields. Also, the Spoonbill was still present, and there were four Spotted Redshanks, a Greenshank, a Whimbrel and a Common Sandpiper in White's Creek. (A McIntyre)
Later on, White's Creek was a wind tunnel and so few waders were present - just a handful of Black-tailed Godwits, Redshanks and a Spotted Redshank. Early on there was a trickle of eastward bound Swallows and these were the only migrants recorded. 
A female Marsh Harrier was in the vicinity of Marsh Farm and sauntered off westwards with an escort of Carrion Crows, whilst the Cattle Egrets were in the large field east of Marsh Farm, among a herd of some 300 cattle who were bunched together and laying down which made counting difficult, though there were at least present. 
In Pagham churchyard there were two Stock Doves and two Kestrels whilst along Church Lane Starlings were flocking and I made a count of around 700. (JDW)

Cattle Egrets (above), Kestrel & Starlings around the North Wall (JDW)

Late this afternoon the Spoonbill was close in, in White's Creek, along with a Spotted redshank,and a Wheatear was along the path. (AB)

Spoonbill (above), Spotted Redshank & Wheatear around the North Wall (AB)

Marsh Farm, Sidlesham: At least 100 Yellow Wagtails were around the cattle this morning. (A&YF)

Church Norton: There weren't too many migrant birds about this morning, though a Spotted Flycatcher, a Whitethroat and a handful of Blackcaps and Willow/Chiffs were in the sheltered hedges around the hide and a dozen or so Swallows, House Martins and Sand Martins moved through..

The harbour was very quiet, with just a few Pintail and Shelducks among a scattering of Redshank and Curlews, whilst a flock of 22 Grey Plover were briefly on the beach before flying back into the harbour, a Gannet and a dozen Mediterranean Gulls were offshore, around 80 Linnets were on at the start of the spit and three Sparrowhawks were tussling over Priory Wood. (AH/AW)

Spotted Flycatcher (above), Spotted Flycatcher and Blackcap, Linnets, Mediterranean Gulls & Grey Plovers at Church Norton (AH)

Monday, 10th September: Another bright and breezy morning, with a brisk westerly and a mix of warm sun and white cloud.....

Selsey Bill: (0800-1015hrs) (C&ME)
Gannet - 5W
Common Scoter - 1W
Turnstone - 11p
Curlew - 1W
Arctic Skua - 1W (d/p)
Sandwich Tern - 26os
Razorbill - 1W
Meadow Pipit - 5N
Pied Wagtail - 4W
Swallow - 15
Willow Warbler - 1p

Ferry Pool: The Little Stint was still present early on, but otherwise it was the usual mix of c10 Lapwing, c25 Black-tailed Godwits, c40 Teal and a dozen Shelduck, with a Whimbrel in the channel opposite.
The Tramway circuit was quiet, with just a handful of Blackcaps and a couple of Whitethroats about, plus a flock of 100+ Goldfinches. (AH)

Little Stint on the Ferry (AH)

North Wall: The North Wall area remains busy for both birds and bird-watchers, with highlights including at least eight fairly mobile Cattle Egrets, up to four Redstarts, four Spotted Flycatchers and three Whinchats around Halsey's Farm, a Curlew Sandpiper in White's Creek and the Spoonbill and a Yellow-legged Gull in the harbour.
Among other birds seen were two Greenshank, two Spotted Redshank, a Whimbrel, a Common Sandpiper and a Reed Warbler (briefly in the waterside vegetation) in White's Creek, plus plenty of Wigeon and Teal, two Kingfishers on Owl Water, a Raven over Halsey's Farm, two Snipe  flying off from the rife there, a Yellow Wagtail over the North Wall and a wide scattering of Whitethroats, Lesser Whitethroats and Blackcaps, plus at least three Sparrowhawks and a couple of Swallows over. (AH/BI/TR/IH/IB/DP/MP et al)

Redstarts (above), Spotted Flycatcher, Cattle Egrets, Spoonbill, Spotted Redshanks, Greenshank, Common Sandpiper, Yellow-legged Gull, Sparrowhawk & Wigeon and Pintail around the North Wall (AH)

Later on, all 12 Cattle Egrets were amongst the cattle close to Macracapra Copse, and being closely watched by a Raven in the macracapra trees. Overhead there were a Hobby and a Marsh Harrier, whilst towards Marsh Farm there were four Stock Doves and two Jays. (JDW)

Cattle Egrets around the North Wall (JDW)

Selsey: A Red Underwing was in the moth-trap today. (SH)

Red Underwing in a Selsey garden (SH)

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