Sunday, 16 June 2019

16th - 18th June 2019

Tuesday, 18th JuneAfter a mild, still and muggy start the dark clouds increased bringing heavy rain by mid-morning, with more heavy showers due.....

Ferry Pool: A dozen Redshank and four Lapwings were on the pool, plus the Shelduck family, whilst a couple of Black-tailed Godwits were in the channel opposite.
The Reed Warblers were still around the roadside reeds, whilst the Sedge warbler was still singing from the Small Pool, a Blackcap was nearby and a Cuckoo was at the far of the Long Pool, viewable from the Tramway. (AH)
Later 28 Redshanks were on the pool. (AW)

Cuckoo (above), Sedge Warbler & Shelducks around the Ferry (AH)

Long Pool: A Cuckoo was showing very well along the hedges this morning. (AW)

Cuckoo along the Long Pool (AW)

Park Farm, Selsey: This evening six Swifts, 10+ Swallows and 20+ House Martins were over the fields and buildings, with a Sparrowhawk and a juvenile Green Woodpecker in the vicinity, too. Also, a Blackcap has been singing for the last couple of days in our garden nearby. (SH

Church Norton: A quick look before the rain set in produced three Curlews and plenty of Little, Common and Sandwich Terns. (AH/IP

MedmerryEaston Lane to the Stilt Pool - A Barn Owl was out hunting till quite late this morning and a Spotted Redshank flew out from somewhere near the Poplars, heading off west and calling loudly.
The banks held the usual mix of Whitethroats, Reed Warblers, Yellowhammers, Linnets and Skylarks, plus several Reed Buntings, whilst up to 200 Mediterranean Gulls were on and over the newly cultivated fields.
There was no sign of the Spoonbill on the Stilt Pool, which was generally quiet, but there were three Little Ringed Plovers, two Avocets, a Lapwing, 16 Gadwall and three families of very differently aged Canada Geese present. (AH/IP)

Barn Owl (above), Spotted Redshank, Little Ringed Plover, Yellowhammer, Skylark, Grey Heron, Gadwall & Canada Goose family at Medmerry (AH)

Monday, 17th JuneA much better day than of late; dry, with blue skies, sunshine and scattered cloud, and feeling warmer, though still with a moderate to fresh SSW wind.

Selsey Bill: An unseasonal Great Northern Diver was the only highlight this morning, but otherwise there were no shearwaters and nothing to write home about. Full log below.......
0730-1100hrs:  (BI/OM)
Great Northern Diver - 1E
Fulmar - 1W
Gannet - 12E, 4W
Common Scoter - 6E
auk sp - 1E
Little Tern - 2os
Common Tern - 3os
Sandwich Tern - 30 os (fishing, to and fro)
Kittiwake - 1W

Great Northern Diver heading east off the Bill (BI)
The Bill House garden in summer bloom. The Hebe bushes, tamarisk and other vegetation have really prospered in recent years and produced some excellent habitat for wildlife....the constant hum of a mass of bumble bees here on a sunny morning is quite something to behold. (OM)

Ferry Pool: Early this morning just singles of Redshank and Lapwing were on the pool, whilst opposite a Sedge Warbler was in the vegetation, the Reed Warbler family was near the Hide and the female Pintail was in Ferry channel. (AH/IP)
A Cattle Egret went over the pool, heading eastwards just before 7pm this evening. (AB)

Sedge Warbler at the Ferry (AH)

Long Pool: The female Gadwall with 11 young in tow was still present, whilst 10 Black-tailed Godwits and a Curlew were in the channel and a Lesser Whitethroat and a Whitethroat were singing from the bushes. (AH)

Whitethroat (above), Black-tailed Godwit & Curlew around the Long Pool (AH)

Church Norton: A female Eider was in the harbour mouth late morning, whilst two Great Crested Grebes were inside the harbour and at least eight Turnstones were on the shingle edges with a couple of Oystercatchers. 
Tern Island and the waters nearby however were just one fantastic mass of feeding gulls and really is a credit to those RSPB staff responsible for maintaining and improving the colony and it's hard to remember now just how different it used to be not that many years ago. Well done to all involved.
Mediterranean Gulls were much more obvious today, with 80+ around the islands and probably more unseen (and IL informs me there was an influx of them late yesterday). No count of Sandwich, Common or Little Terns, nor indeed Black-headed Gulls, was attempted by me - fortunately I left that with IL/TG-P who were monitoring the colony for the WeBS - phew!! Otherwise, a couple of Blackcaps were still singing well, but there was little else of note. (OM/IL/TG-P)

North WallIt was much of a muchness along the Wall today, though I could see no Swallows around the stables. Along White's Creek there were a few Black-headed Gulls and a solitary Redshank, whilst on the Breech Pool were 26 Black-tailed Godwits, 2 Little Egrets, 2 Tufted Ducks and a few Mallard, plus 2 Common Terns were fishing there. 
Up and down the Wall were Sedge and Reed Warblers and Reed Buntings, all feeding young, though Herons at Owl Copse appeared to be taking a break from parenting duties. (JDW)

Adult Herons at Owl copse relaxing from parental duties. (JDW)

This evening, a Barn Owl was hunting at Halsey's Farm, with a Cuckoo calling nearby, whilst a Common Tern was fishing on the Breech Pool, c30 Black-tailed Godwits were on the pool and a Green Sandpiper went over. (AH/IH et al)

Barn Owl (above) & Common Tern at the North Wall (AH)

Chi Marina: I made a brief visit to check out the pool and reed-bed area, but there was nothing out of the ordinary. A pair of Buzzards was visiting a wood where they are probably nesting, whilst 20 Swallows and a couple of Swifts were feeding over the pool and the adjacent meadows. 

Two or three pairs of Reed Buntings were in the reedy area, as were several Reed Warbler families, plus at least two singing Cetti's Warblers. The pair of Mute Swans with their cygnets were also nearby at the canal, up to their usual trick of holding up the traffic by roosting on the roadway! (OM)

Sidlesham: A Cuckoo was still calling somewhere near our garden late this evening. (AH)

Medmerry: Easton Lane to the Stilt Pool - The Spoonbill and a Common Tern were on the stilt Pool this afternoon. (IL)
Later on, the Spoonbill was near Marsh Barn, whilst there were four Avocets and a Little Ringed Plover on the Stilt Pool and 80+ Mediterranean Gulls were on the newly cultivated fields.
There were plenty of birds along and overt the banks, including two Buzzards, a Cuckoo, a Swift, 16 Swallows, three Yellowhammers, four Reed Buntings, four Whitethroats and three Reed Warblers. (S&SaH)

Spoonbill at Medmerry (IL)

Sunday, 16th June: Another cool and blustery morning, with a strong southerly bringing in squalls of drizzly rain, though due to improve later....

Selsey Bill: A pale-phase Arctic Skua was offshore again, a sub-adult male Eider went west and another very distant 'shearwater sp' were the most notable birds, with otherwise just several Fulmars and Gannets and a few feeding terns. Full log below..... 
(0530-0930hrs) (SH/BI/AH/IP)
Fulmar - 8W
Gannet - 14W, 20os
shearwater sp - 1W very distant
Eider - 1W
Common Scoter - 3E
Arctic Skua - 1os (l/p)
Little Tern - 6os
Common Tern - 5os
Sandwich Tern - 39os
Guillemot - 1W
Razorbill - 1E, 1W
Swift - 1os

Little Terns (above), Sandwich Tern, Common Tern & Fulmar at the Bill (AH)

(1200-1300hrs) (SH/DS/DM)
Manx Shearwater - 1E
shearwater sp - 1E very distantly
Gannet - 4E, 2W
Sandwich Tern - 7os
Little Tern - 1os
Razorbill - 1E
Swift - 1p

(1620-1720) (SH)
Gannet - 1W
Kittiwake - 1W
Sandwich Tern - 38+os with 16E carrying fish
Common Tern - 4E, carrying fish

Park Farm, Selsey: A Hobby went low over the fields this afternoon. (S&SaH)

Ferry Pool: There were two Avocets on the pool this morning, along with a Little Ringed Plover, four Lapwings, a dozen Redshank and the Shelduck family, whilst the Sedge Warbler was still singing from the Small Pool opposite and a Cuckoo could be heard from towards Sidlesham Quay. (AH)

Little Ringed Plover (above), Avocets, Redshank & Sedge Warbler around the Ferry (AH)

Long Pool: A couple of Lesser Whitethroats were calling along the hedges, along with a Whitethroat, a couple of Reed Warblers and a couple of Reed Buntings, whilst six Swifts went over.
The female Pintail was in Ferry Channel this morning, along with a Curlew, six Black-tailed Godwits, ten Redshank and a few Gadwall and Mallards. (AH)

Pintail (above) & Reed Bunting around the Long Pool (AH)

Church Norton: A Cuckoo and a Sparrowhawk were around the Severals, and there was a constant stream of Sandwich Terns, plus a few Little and Common Terns, carrying food back to the colony. There were also a few Mediterranean Gulls about, but no waders beyond a lone Curlew. (S&SaH/AH)

Sandwich Tern (above), Common Tern & Mediterranean Gulls at Church Norton (AH)

Ivy Lake Complex: This afternoon I went looking for Pochard families. The family of mother and three ducklings had moved to the back of Triangle Lake from Ivy Lake, a wise move in view of the water skiing activities. 

Three more Pochard families were on New Lake, one of five ducklings keeping well to the edge of the lake and two females out in the centre with three ducklings each. At least that's how it started, but things got surprisingly nasty when the two latter families swam too close to one another. One of the females took hold of a duckling belonging to the other female and repeatedly picked it up in the air and dropped it, a fight between the females ensued and I thought a duckling had been killed when one female swam off with only two following. However when things calmed down I took a closer look and realised the youngsters were all present but had been redistributed, one female now only had two whilst the other now had four. I hadn't realised Pochards behaved like this, they always look so peaceful!

The Egyptian Goose family were at East Lake, with the seven juveniles just about fully grown now and four more juveniles were on Ivy Lake. The long-staying pair of breeding Black Swans certainly left earlier in the year, their former nesting site on Triangle Lake now holds a wood pile where trees and undergrowth have been cleared, but it was good to hear a Cetti's Warbler calling from undergrowth alongside West Trout Lake just opposite their former haunt at the corner of Triangle Lake. (SR)

Pochard family (above) & Egyptian Geese around Ivy Lake (SR)

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