Sunday, 10 February 2019

10th - 12th February 2019

Tuesday, 12th February: After a decidedly chilly start, another pleasant morning of sunshine and light cloud in a light south-westerly breeze....

Selsey Bill: There were thousands of auks offshore this morning, mostly moving through, along with 150 Kittiwakes, to join the 200+ Gannets feeding offshore. Also a Black-throated Diver and three Great Northern Divers were on the sea, at least six Sandwich Terns and 45 Mediterranean Gulls were also present and a few Red-throated Divers were going in both directions. Full log below....... 
Red-throated Diver - 27E, 16W, 2os
Black-throated Diver - 1 os
Great Northern Diver - 3 os
Great Crested Grebe - 3W, 1os
Fulmar - 1E, 1W
Gannet - 20E, 50W, 200+ os
Brent Goose - 21E, 1W
Common Scoter - 80 os
Red-breasted Merganser - 2W, 6 os
Guillemot - 1E, 4W, 2os
Razorbill - 600W, 150E, 100os
auk sp - 700E, 3000W (Probably an under-estimate; at one time a peak count of 1000W was made in just five minutes and movement was continuous for well over two hours).
Sandwich Tern - 6os, eventually drifted W
Kittiwake - 5E, 120W, 30 os
Mediterranean Gull - 45 os
Common Gull - 3E, 5W
Skylark - 1 over SW

Sandwich Tern (above), Sandwich Tern and Mediterranean Gull, Kittiwake, Fulmar, Red-throated Diver, Guillemot & Razorbills at the Bill (AH)

Selsey: East Beach - One of the four Sandwich Terns off East Beach was ringed - Orange V97. It was ringed as a nestling in June 2015 in Holland, was sighted in Holland again in June 2017 then in Chichester Harbour in November and December 2017. It was seen again in the harbour in March and April 2018 and then Holland in July. This tern clearly does not migrate to Africa during the winter.
Also one of the adults was in summer plumage! (AW)

Ringed Sandwich Tern off East Beach (AW)

Ferry Pool: Two Green Sandpipers were on the concealed pool this morning, whilst a dozen Shelduck, c30 Shoveler, c50 Teal and c200 Wigeon were around the pool, though there were no Lapwings about. (AH)

Green Sandpiper (above) & Shovelers, Wgeon and Shelducks on the Ferry (AH)

Church Norton: The Hooded Crow was viewable around the shingle near the harbour mouth again this morning, and a Sandwich Tern was offshore. (NBd/DC)
The Hooded Crow wasn't showing later on, though three Goldeneyes, the two Peregrines, a dozen Common Gulls, at least 500 Brent Geese and plenty of the commoner waders were in the harbour and up to 20 Skylarks were along the spit. (AH/IP/DF/DS)

Skylark (above) & Common Gull at Church Norton (AH)

Pagham Spit: A/The Hooded Crow was showing nicely opposite the old car park on Pagham Spit this morning. (NBd/TG/GaJ)

Hooded Crow at Pagham Spit (NBd)

Medmerry: Ham Farm - A Hooded Crow was seen near Ham Farm this morning. (HB/ESt) It seems that this could well be a second bird, though inevitably it is difficult to be certain of the timings of both sightings. (Eds)

A comparison between the Pagham & Medmerry Hooded Crows can be seen below. It appears that there may be some subtle differences in plumage although variations are far from conclusive. (per ESt)

 Hooded Crow at Pagham above, and Medmerry, below:

Medmerry - Breach: Not much to report this morning; a Red-throated Diver, a couple of Great Crested Grebes and four Red-breasted Mergansers were offshore, whilst around the rough ground at Toe End were 15 Meadow Pipits, two Skylarks and a Stonechat. A flock of 60 Brent Geese was spread across the mudflats, whilst a similar number of Teal were tightly bunched in reedy vegetation. (OM)

Stonechat at Medmerry, Toe End (OM)

Monday, 11th February: A mix of sun and cloud this morning, fairly mild in the light westerly breeze.....

Selsey Bill: There were plenty of auks moving about, and at least 200 Gannets were feeding well offshore, with 47 Mediterranean Gulls along the beach. Full log below. (AH/BI)
Great Northern Diver - 1os
Red-throated Diver - 6E, 15W, 4os
Gannet - 200+os
Common Scoter - 45os
Red-breasted Merganser - 2E
Common Gull - 2W
Mediterranean Gull - 47os
Guillemot - 3W, 2os
Razorbill - 400W, 50E, 100os
auk sp - 500W, 200E

Guillemots (above), Razorbills, Razorbills and Guillemot & Mediterranean Gulls at the Bill (AH)

Pagham Lagoon/Spit: The Hooded Crow was out on the shingle from the spit this morning, feeding all on its own. There were also several big flocks of waders roosting at low tide, including 100+ Grey Plovers, 200+ Knot and 500+ Dunlin among them.
There were five five Goldeneye in the harbour, plus a few Mediterranean and Common Gulls and a few dozen Wigeon and Shelduck, but generally it was quiet.
Pagham Lagoon just held a dozen Tufted Duck, two Wigeon, a handful of Little Grebes and c30 Mediterranean Gulls. (AH/SR)

Hooded Crow (above), Knot and Grey Plovers & Knot, Grey Plovers and Dunlin from Pagham Spit (AH)

Church Norton: First thing this morning there was a Marsh Harrier high over the harbour and the two Peregrines were together on their island. At least 1000 Brent Geese were spread about and there were four Goldeneye near the harbour entrance. (AW)
Later on, a Raven was out on the shingle at the harbour mouth. (IP)

Marsh Harrier (above), Goldeneyes, Peregrine, Brent Geese & Skylark at Church Norton (AH)

Chalder Farm: Two Cattle Egrets were present this afternoon. (TG-P)

North Wall: There wasn't too much going on here, though there were at least 500 Lapwings, 100+ Wigeon, 50+ Teal and around 20 Black-tailed Godwits in White's Creek, with 500 Brent Geese out in the harbour. The Breech Pool only held eight Tufted Ducks and 20 or so Teal. (AH/TK)

Wigeon and Teal (above) & Brent Geese from North Wall (AH)

West Itchenor: The Nuthatch was calling again today in the copse by Chalkdock marsh. (PH)

Drayton Pits: The Great White Egret was seen in flight over the North Pit, where there were also Bullfinches glimpsed and heard at either end and about 40 Pochard and a few Tufted Duck were on the water. (AH)

Great White Egret at Drayton Pits

Medmerry - Easton Lane area: There were 250+ Stock Doves in the car park area and two Green Sandpipers nearby on the flood area. (TG-P)

Chainbridge to Ham Farm area: Two Barn Owls were around Chainbridge sluice this afternoon, whilst a Merlin was in hot pursuit of a Skylark over Ham Farm. (TG-P)

Selsey: East Beach - This afternoon off East Beach there were three Slavonian Grebes, three Red-breasted Mergansers and a dozen Razorbills, all,together, offshore, with two Red-throated Divers flying west. (AW)

Razorbill (above) & Slavonian Grebes off East Beach (AW)

Sunday, 10th February: A fairly cold and grey morning, after early rain, and with a fresh westerly breeze.....

Selsey Bill: There were nine Sandwich Terns feeding around the Mile Basket this morning and two Slavonian Grebes went west, but otherwise there was a reasonable selection of the regular species to be seen. Full log below. (JA/SH/PB/IP/AH)
Great Northern Diver - 2os
Red-throated Diver - 15E, 30W, 1os
diver sp - 1E
Slavonian Grebe -2W
Great Crested Grebe - 1W, 1os
Gannet - 4E, 36W, 20os
Brent Goose - 7E
Common Scoter - 50os
Red-breasted Merganser - 3E, 1W, 7os
Common Gull - 2E
Mediterranean Gull - 5os
Sandwich Tern - 9os
Guillemot - 5W
Razorbill - 2E, 29W, 9os

Red-throated Divers (above) & Common Scoters at the Bill (AH)

Pagham Beach: I found a Hooded Crow amongst the Carrion Crows and gulls feeding along the shoreline of Pagham Beach. (O Crawshaw per SOS)

Ferry Pool: There were just 12 Shelducks and 20+ Shoveler and Teal on the pool and c100 Lapwing on the field this morning. (AH)

Lapwing and Shelducks on the Ferry (AH)

Drayton Pit: The Great White Egret was viewable on the south pit from the gate this morning, whilst there were also a Jay and the usual Pochard, Shovelers and Tufted Ducks present. (PB)

Marsh Farm, Sidlesham: There were still at least six Cattle Egrets around the farm this morning. (per RBA)

Medmerry: Easton Lane - A Barn Owl was seen from the car along Easton Lane this afternoon. (sR/BJ)

Park Farm, Selsey: Around 100 Brent Geese were on the fields this morning, along with c40 Curlews, until spooked by the loud bird-scarers. Also, 200+ Golden Plovers drifted over high from the Medmerry direction. (AH/IP/RM/S&SaH)

Brent Geese at Park Farm, Selsey (AH)

Church Norton: There were three or four Red-throated Divers and a handful of distant Gannets offshore this morning, plus a couple of Great Crested Grebes and a Red-breasted Merganser.
The harbour held good numbers of the regular waders, plus five Bar-tailed Godwits and a few Ringed Plovers, both Peregrines were present, as were a few Common and Mediterranean Gulls, whilst 1000 Lapwings were up at the far end. A dozen or so Linnets and Skylarks on the spit, though, were about the sum of small birds seen. (AH/IP/RM/S&SaH)

Bar-tailed Godwits (above), Grey Plover and Dunlin at Church Norton (AH)

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