Saturday, 29 December 2018

29th - 31st December 2018

Monday, 31st December: Another still and fairly mild, though very gloomy, morning to end the year....

Hot off the press! The Review of the Year for 2018 is now available to view - click on the above link to find it (Eds)

And so, as another year draws to a close, the editorial team of Andy, Bart and Owen, together with Justin our Log-keeper, would like to take this early opportunity - before it all gets a bit frantic tomorrow - of wishing everyone a very Happy and Bird-filled New Year. Let's hope the weather is kind to us and the birding is great - and that our little blog battles on! (Eds)

Wood Warbler excitement in spring, near the Visitor Centre.  Perhaps another next year...? (OM)

Selsey Bill: There was a reasonable selection this morning, including four Slavonian Grebes, an Eider and two Great Northern Divers on the sea and a few Red-throated Divers and Gannets on the move, whilst a very tame Kestrel was finding something to eat around the children's playground.. Full log below. (JA/SH/AH)
Great Northern Diver - 2os
Red-throated Diver - 10E, 18W, 4os
diver sp - 1E, 1W
Slavonian Grebe - 4os
Fulmar - 1W
Gannet - 29E, 33W, 20os
Brent Goose - 1E
Wigeon - 1W
Eider - 1W, 1os
Red-breasted Merganser - 24E, 6W, 4os
Kestrel - 1p
Mediterranean Gull - 2E, 2W, 1os
Kittiwake - 1W
Razorbill - 4E, 2os
auk sp - 32E, 6W, 9os
Pied Wagtail - 1p

Slavonian Grebe (above), Red-throated Diver, Gannet (AH) & Kestrel (SH) at the Bill

Medmerry: Breach area - The Hooded Crow was reported as present again (per Twitter)

Ferry Pool: The three Green Sandpipers were on the concealed pool again this morning until something spooked everything around the field, including at least 500 Lapwing and 150 Wigeon. There were also 30 Shoveler and 60 Teal on the pool. (AH)

Lapwings over the Ferry (AH)

North Wall: White's Creek was busy this morning, with highlights including a Spotted Redshank, two Avocets, 31 Golden Plover and 100+ Knot and Black-tailed Godwits, along with numerous Brent Geese, Wigeon, Teal and Dunlin.
The Breech Pool was far too full of water for anything of interest, though a pair of Stonechats were in the paddocks and a Cetti's Warbler was calling nearby. (PB)

Church Norton: A Slavonian Grebe, three Red-breasted Mergansers and ten Gannets were offshore this morning, the two Stonechats were in the horse field and four Avocets were in the harbour, along with the two regular Peregrines, with a different one going over high up. (S&SaH)

Fishbourne Creek: There were at least three Greenshank and two Spotted Redshanks along the channel, plus five Goldeneye and three Red-breasted Mergansers, along with at least 500 Wigeon, 100 Teal, 100 Black-tailed Godwits and numerous Dunlin, Grey Plovers and Redshanks.
The big roost of gulls contained at least 20 Lesser Black-backed, 250+ Common and just a few Mediterranean Gulls, but passerines were few, comprising of a Grey Wagtail, a calling Cetti's Warbler, a couple of flighty Rock Pipits, a Reed Bunting and a couple of Yellowhammers. (AH)

Greenshank (above), Spotted Redshank, Grey Wagtail, Goldeneyes & Red-breasted Mergansers at Fishbourne Creek (AH)

Sunday, 30th December: Another rather grey and murky morning, but with just a light westerly breeze.....

Selsey Bill: Four Sandwich Terns went east, an Eider was on the sea and there were one or two Red-throated Divers going east and west. Full log later. (RJS/AF/CRJ/AH/IP)
Red-throated Diver - 3E, 4W
Brent Goose - 1W, 5E
Common Scoter - 3E
Eider - 1os
Red-breasted Merganser - 10E, 10os
Gannet - 10os
Turnstone - 6W
Mediterranean Gull - 5os
Sandwich Tern - 4E
Razorbill - 1W
auk sp - 9W

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

Ferry Pool: There were three Green Sandpipers on the concealed pool today, with c30 Shovelers, c50 Teal and up to 200 Wigeon on the main pool. (AH)
Later on, a Water Rail was in Red Barn Ditch (behind the Visitor Centre) (SA)

Green Sandpiper (above) & Shovelers and Wigeon on the Ferry (AH)

Marsh Farm to Bramber Farm, Sidlesham: There was a new high-count of Cattle Egrets - 26 - today around Marsh Farm, along with seven Little Egrets. There were also a few Redwings and Fieldfares in the hedges, along with a Stonechat and three Yellowhammers, with a Peregrine an a Buzzard over and four Pied Wagtails and 50+ Meadow Pipits on the fields. (SH/PB)

Park Farm, Selsey: The Stonechat and the Redshank were still present, along with at least 60 Curlews in the fields this morning, whilst a Sparrowhawk went over.. (AH/IP/RM)
Later on there were three Mistle Thrushes near the poplars and a Chiffchaff in the hedges. (S&SaH)

Sparrowhawk (above) & Redshank at Park Farm, Selsey (AH)

Chichester Marina: A female Marsh Harrier was sat in a bare tree in the middle of the reedbed at the marina at 3pm, and the Black Swan was with two Mute Swans again in the canal. (HR/DM)

Church Norton: A Slavonian Grebe flew east and a Red-throated Diver, plus a couple of Gannets went west this morning, but there was nothing of note on the sea. 
In the harbour there were at least 1000 Brent Geese before they began to disperse, along with two Goldeneye, a few Pintail and plenty of Wigeon and Teal, plus a few Mediterranean Gulls..
Up to 20 Avocets were at thy far end of the main channel and two Bar-tailed and one Black-tailed Godwits were among the many Dunlin, Knot and Grey Plover seen, whilst the two Peregrines were on their island and a Sparrowhawk went over the Severals.
Just about the only passerines seen were a Stonechat in the horse field and a Skylark on the spit. (AH/IP/RM)

Stonechat (above), Bar-tailed Godwit and Redshank, Mediterranean Gull & Brent Geese at Church Norton (AH)

North Wall: There were 2800 Brent Geese (including good numbers of juveniles) and 46 Curlews this lunchtime on the fields they hope to build 400 houses on along Pagham Road. (JDW/AW).

Brent Geese along Pagham Road (JDW above & AW)

Pagham Lagoon/Spit: This afternoon there was a pair of Pochard on the Lagoon, whilst around the harbour entrance there were two female Goldeneye as well as large numbers of Wigeon, Teal and Pintail. (AW)

Goldeneye from Pagham Spit (above) & Pochards on Pagham Lagoon (AW)

Saturday, 29th December: A fairly mild, mostly grey morning, with a freshening westerly breeze...

Selsey Bill: Not much on the move, though eight Red-throated Divers went east. Full log below. (AH/BI/IP)
Red-throated Diver - 8E, 1W, 2os
Great Northern Diver - 2os
Gannet - 1E, 1W
Red-breasted Merganser - 2E, 4os
Mediterranean Gull - 1W
Razorbill - 1W
auk sp - 1E, 2W

Ferry Pool: There were four Gadwall, seven Shelduck, c40 Shovelers, c80 Teal and c150 Wigeon around the pool, along with c100 Lapwing this morning. (AH)

Wigeon on the Ferry (AH)

Marsh Farm, Sidlesham: There were at least ten Cattle Egrets feeding on a field right in the middle of the farm, so only distant and partially obscured views this morning. (GM)

Park Farm, Selsey: A Stonechat, a dozen Meadow Pipits, a Redshank and c50 Curlews were around the fields this morning, with a Chiffchaff in Park Lane. Also, c150 Golden Plover flew up from the west (presumably emanating from Medmerry). (AH/IP/RM/S&SaH)

Chiffchaff at Park Farm, Selsey (SH)

Church Norton: A Slavonian Grebe on the sea towards Park Lane and a Red-throated Diver going west were all that could be found offshore this morning, though at least 800 Dark-bellied Brent Geese, with a Pale-bellied individual among them, were intermittently on the beach when flushed from Greenlease Farm by the bird-scarer.
There were also at least 200 Knot, 100 Grey Plovers and 1000 Dunlin on the beach, but the harbour just held the usual selection, including the two Peregrines on their island, three Goldeneye and a few Pintail on the far side and large numbers of Wigeon, Teal and Brent Geese throughout.
Also, the pair of Stonechats and a few Meadow Pipits were around the horse field, a Jay and a Buzzard were around the Priory and a few Skylarks were along the spit. (AH/IP/RM/BI)

Pale-bellied and Dark-bellied Brent Geese (above), Slavonian Grebe, Red-throated Diver, Mediterranean Gull & Stonechats at Church Norton (AH)  & Pale-bellied Brent Goose, bottom pic. (BI)

Pagham: There were at least 1500 Dark-bellied Brent Geese on the fields at Church Farm late morning. (BI)

Wednesday, 26 December 2018

26th - 28th December 2018

Friday, 28th December: Another nice day for the time of year, with just a gentle breeze and slowly brightening after a murky start.....

Selsey Bill: Three SandwichTerns went east and a few Red-throated Divers and a Slavonian Grebe were about, but otherwise unsurprisingly quiet, given the conditions. (BI/AH)
Great Northern Diver - 2os
Red-throated Diver - 8E, 6W, 20s
Slavonian Grebe - 1os
Mute Swan - 2E
Brent Goose - 3W
Wigeon - 10E
Red-breasted Merganser - 10os
Mediterranean Gull - 3os
Sandwich Tern - 3E
Razorbill - 1E

Red-throated Diver (above), Wigeon & Mute Swans at the Bill (AH)

Ferry Pool: There were about 20 Shoveler and 60 Teal on the pool, with c300 Lapwing and c100 Wigeon on the field this morning. (AH)

Lapwings on the Ferry (AH)

Marsh Farm, SidleshamThere were 24 Cattle Egrets in the fields near the farm this morning, a new Peninsula and County high, with nearly all of them sitting in the trees after being disturbed by gunfire. 
There was not much else around, though a Stonechat, a Chiffchaff and a dozen Meadow Pipits were along Church Farm Lane, with the shooting party at Bramber Farm keeping that end devoid of birds. (AH)

Cattle Egrets (above), Stonechat, Chiffchaff & Meadow Pipit at Marsh Farm, Sidlesham (AH)

Ivy Lake: A drake Goosander was on the east end of the lake this morning but was very elusive and the Greylag Geese from Runcton dropped onto Copse lake. (BI)

Goosander at Ivy Lake (BI)

Medmerry: Toe End - Early this afternoon the Hooded Crow was showing very well near the breach, whilst other birds of note included four Sandwich Terns, a female-type Black Redstart, pair of Stonechats, two Corn Buntings and out on the reserve an adult Peregrine was perched on the roof of a derelict building. (B&MC per SOS)

Runcton: The eight Egyptian Geese, along with a Bar-headed Goose and 87 Greylag Geese were on the fields at Runcton Farm this morning. (BI)

Greylag & Bar-headed Geese, above, and Egyptian Geese at Runcton (BI)

Church Norton: The only birds on a flat sea at high tide this afternoon were a flock of 500 Brent Geese, after the very loud bird-scarer went off on Greenlease Farm.
The harbour held lots of the commoner waders, plus a couple of Goldeneye, 50+ Pintail and plenty of Wigeon and Teal, as well as half a dozen Mediterranean Gulls and a half dozen Little and Great Crested Grebes. (AH)

Turnstone (above), Dunlin & Brent Geese at Church Norton (AH)

Thursday, 27th December: A fairly pleasant and calm day overall; dry, cloudy and chilly at first, with just a light NE breeze, becoming brighter with some sunshine by early afternoon.....

Selsey Bill: There were six Eiders offshore by the Mile Basket this morning, five of which eventually moved off east and there were at least seven Sandwich Terns present also; bar those, fairly quiet with just a few Red-throated and Great Northern Divers about. Full log below. (JA/BI)
Great Northern Diver - 1os
Red-throated Diver - 7E, 2os
diver sp - 3E, 2os
Gannet - 4E, 1W
Brent Goose - 13E
Eider - 5E, 2os
Red-breasted Merganser - 1E, 7os
Sandwich Tern - 8os

Marsh Farm, Sidlesham: There were 21 Cattle Egrets present this morning. (BI)

Cattle Egrets at Sidlesham (BI)

Ferry Pool: Late this morning there were 2 Green Sandpipers on the Ferry, with a Buzzard, 2 Stonechats and a Snipe nearby. (AW)

Green Sandpipers on the Ferry Pool (AW)

Park Farm, Selsey: Late this afternoon three Ringed Plover were back and there was also a Black-tailed Godwit in with 50 Curlew. A Chiffchaff, 10+ Pied Wagtails, 20 + Skylarks and two Goldcrests were also logged. (SH)

Church Norton: Seven Slavonian Grebes were offshore from the Spit, as well as a distant Velvet Scoter and three Red-breasted Mergansers, plus another Merganser in the harbour with unusual black eye markings. The two Peregrines were around. with the male feeding on a kill, whilst along the spit there were a few Skylarks and Meadow Pipits. (AW)

 Red-breasted Mergansers at Church Norton (AW)

 Peregrines in the harbour at Church Norton (AW)

Slavonian Grebes (above) and distant Velvet Scoter offshore, and Meadow Pipit on Norton Spit (AW)

Apuldram/Fishbourne Creek: A Firecrest was in the car park near the church, with a small flock of Long-tailed Tits, whilst a Song Thrush was singing stridently nearby. There were plenty of birds out in the channel, including several hundred Wigeon and similar of commoner waders, plus four Greenshank and a Spotted Redshank. Two Grey Wagtails were along the edge of the strandline and ditches, but trying to check out the six or so Rock Pipits present in the saltmarsh proved to be a somewhat frustrating business, with all of them very flighty today, giving just brief views before diving into cover! At least 15 Yellowhammers and a couple of Reed Buntings were also nearby along the hedgeline. (OM) 

Ivy Lake: The highlight today was a smart male Bullfinch along the path but otherwise it was the usual fare of Coots, Great Crested Grebes and Tufted Ducks. (BI)

Sidlesham SF: A quick look around the sewage farm produced six Pied Wagtails, ten Meadow Pipits and a large flock of Starlings this morning. (BI)

Boxing Day, Wednesday, 26th December: A cool and grey, but fairly still, morning, with just a light southerly breeze picking up as the day progressed....

Selsey Bill: Another morning with a bit of variety, including seven Sandwich Terns offshore. Full log below. (SH/JA/CN/IP)
Great Northern Diver - 3os
Red-throated Diver - 14E, 2W, 2os
diver sp - 1E
Great Crested Grebe - 2W, 3os
Gannet - 26E, 14W
Brent Goose - 12W
Wigeon - 2E
Eider - 4E, 2os
Common Scoter - 3E, 6os
Red-breasted Merganser - 15os
Mediterranean Gull - 1E
Kittiwake - 1E, 1W
Sandwich Tern - 7os
auk sp - 4E, 6W

Ferry Pool: There were just a dozen Shovelers and c50 Teal on the pool, with c50 Lapwing on the field this morning. (AH)

Teal on Ferry Pool (AH)

Park Farm, Selsey: There were two Mistle Thrushes about again this morning and there were still 50+ Curlews and c20 Pied Wagtails, Meadow Pipits and Skylarks, plus a couple of Linnets, on the fields. (S&SaH/AH/IP/CN)

Church Norton: There were two Firecrests with four Goldcrests in the car park, and seven Siskins in the trees at the bottom of the path towards the harbour. (A&YF)
Later there were five Slavonian Grebes offshore, along with a couple of Great Crested Grebes, whilst in the harbour there were two Goldeneye, three Red-breasted Mergansers, a few Pintail and plenty of Wigeon and Teal.
Also, one of the Peregrines was sat near their island, five Avocets were in the main channel and several Bar-tailed Godwits were among the large numbers of Knot, Grey Plover and Dunlin present, with a couple of hundred Golden Plover again appearing west of Priory Wood.
A couple of hundred Brent Geese were commuting between the sea and Greenlease Farm, where a Merlin was seen to shoot through, the two Stonechats and c30 Meadow Pipits were around the horse field and a few Skylarks were along the spit. (S&SaH/AH/IP/CN)

Slavonian Grebes (above), Meadow Pipit, Stonechats (all AW), Goldeneye, Common Gull & mixed waders (AH) at Church Norton

Medmerry: The Hooded Crow was still present today and four Red-breasted Mergansers and c.40 Common Scoter were offshore. (A.Huttly)

Runcton: There were 79 Greylag Geese and one Bar-headed Goose on the fields today along with five Mute Swans and two Canada Geese. (BI)

Greylag Geese at Runcton (BI)

Ivy Lake: A quick look this morning found c.100 Pochards, nine Gadwall and c.20 Tufted Ducks on the water and a large mixed Tit flock along the path. (BI)