Tuesday, 4 June 2019

4th - 6th June 2019

Thursday, 6th June: Another reasonably bright, but blustery, morning, with some sunshine, scattered cloud and a brisk south-westerly breeze.....

Selsey Bill: Having noted that recently, at sites much further west, some petrels and shearwaters have been seen, I was determined to put in a decent shift at the Bill today just in case. I was pleased to be joined by PC for part of the time, but sadly my efforts were not rewarded and an Arctic Skua was the best on offer. Full log (!) below........
(0730-1200hrs): (OM/PC)
Fulmar - 2W
Gannet - 20E, 4W
Little Tern - 1 os
Common Tern - 6 os
Sandwich Tern - 30+ os
Kittiwake - 4W
Mediterranean Gull - 2W
Arctic Skua - 1E (d/p, briefly harassing terns)

Sign of the times! This new addition has recently appeared at the south end of Grafton Road, presumably in response to the increasing number of tourist motor-caravans and campers using the field whilst parking in the unmade section of the road. It seems the news has perhaps spread via social media of these free facilities; it will be interesting to see if the above rules are obeyed and/or enforced in the future. (OM)

Church Norton: Just a quick update on the Tern Island/Peregrine Island progress so far this season: (NB all photos taken were under a licence). The Black-headed Gulls have increased again to a minimum of 523 nests, which have been hatching on mass over the last week. Mediterranean Gulls have also increased to a minimum of 15 nests which are hatching. On the tern front there are 17 Little Tern nest (20 pairs), although some have nested close to the strandline with the first chick hatched, 12 Common Tern nests and 100+ Sandwich Tern nests which are hatching.  (Ivan Lang, Warden)
(We are most grateful to IL for the update, and wish all RSPB staff - and indeed the nesting birds - the very best for the rest of the season, though of course there's a long way to go yet! Eds).

Views from the nesting colonies: (top) Little Tern chick & egg, (below) Sandwich Tern chicks, (bottom two - Mediterranean Gull and Sandwich Terns) (all photos IL - under licence)

Ferry Pool: Similar to yesterday, on a very full pool, with eight Lapwings, two Redshanks and the Shelduck family being the only birds present, though half a dozen Black-tailed Godwits were in the channel opposite. (AH)

Shelducks (above) & Lapwings on the Ferry (AH)

Long Pool: One of the pairs of Little Grebes had young hidden in the reeds this morning, and there was also a pair of Gadwall present, but Ferry Chanel just held a handful of Redshank and Shelducks.
Several Reed and Sedge Warblers were singing along the pool, with a Blackcap and a handful of Linnets also about, and half a dozen Lapwings were on the uncropped fields. (AH)

Sedge Warbler (above), Blackcap, Gadwall & Redshanks around the Long Pool (AH)

Medmerry: Easton Lane to the Stilt Pool - There were two roosting Spoonbills on the Stilt Pool, along with two Little Ringed Plovers, ten Avocets, six pairs of Gadwall and three pairs of Tufted Ducks, with a Stonechat and a Meadow Pipit in the vicinity.
The banks and hedgerows held the usual suspects in reasonable numbers, including Whitethroat, Yellowhammer, Stock Dove, Linnet and Skylark, whilst there were also at least five Reed Warblers singing in the ditches and each body of water (be it ditch or pond) held a Little Egret, though only a lone Swallow was seen. (IP)

Spoonbills (above) & Canada Goose family at Medmerry (IP)

Wednesday, 5th June: A fairly mild morning, with increasing cloud but some sunshine, and a fresh westerly breeze.....

Ferry Pool: A dozen Lapwings were at the back, but the only other birds present were a couple of Redshank and the Shelduck family, whilst a Lesser Whitethroat was still vocal in the hedge opposite and a dozen or so Black-tailed Godwits were in the adjacent channel. (AH)

Shelducks (above) & Black-tailed Godwits around the Ferry (AH)

Long Pool: A pair of Cuckoos were very active around the area early this morning, and a Hobby went over, heading east, but small birds were keeping low in the wind, though a couple of Lesser Whitethroats and several Reed and Sedge Warblers were heard and a few Linnets were in the gorse.
Two pairs of Little Grebes were on the pool and a  pair of Avocets were at the end of Ferry channel, but otherwise there were just a handful of Redshanks and Shelduck present. (AH)

Hobby (above), Cuckoo, Little Grebe & Linnet around the Long Pool (AH)

Medmerry: Easton Lane to the Stilt Pool - The highlight of a lunchtime visit was a Spoonbill on the Stilt Pool, along with eight Avocets. Despite the breezy conditions there was a near constant accompaniment of Skylark song, with lesser numbers of Whitethroat, Yellowhammer, Reed Warbler & Reed Bunting present, whilst Linnets were common along the banks. (RW)

Church Norton: This evening there were plenty of Sandwich and Little Terns around the harbour, plus a couple of Common Terns, but the only waders present were a mobile flock of 25 Dunlin and one or two Ringed Plovers. Also, a newly-fledged Reed Bunting was in the first Several. (S&SaH/AH)

Sandwich Tern (above), Common Tern & Dunlins at Church Noron (AH)

Tuesday, 4th June: After a still and pleasant start, a cool and mostly grey day, with low cloud and the odd spot of drizzle in a fresh and blustery easterly wind....

Ferry Pool: There were four Avocets on the pool this morning, along with the Shelduck family, two Redshanks, four Lapwings and six Black-tailed Godwits, with another dozen of the latter in the channel opposite. (AH)

Avocets and Shelducks on the Ferry (AH)

Medmerry: Easton Lane to the Stilt Pool - A drake Garganey on the Stilt Pool this morning was a surprise, and it was encouraging to report 12 Avocets present, all in pairs, but none looking like they were sitting or displaying and a pair of Little Ringed Plovers behaving as though they had young hidden in the vegetation. 
Otherwise there were three Dunlin, half a dozen Lapwings and 16 Gadwall on the pool, along with two families of Canada Geese.
Two Cuckoos were calling against each other around the Poplars, but the banks and ditches just held the usual mix of Whitethroats, Reed Warblers, Linnets and Skylarks, plus the odd Yellowhammer and Reed Bunting, all keeping low in the windy conditions. (AH)

Garganey (above), Garganey and Gadwall, Dunlin, Little Ringed Plover, Reed Bunting, Skylark& Canada Geese at Medmerry (AH)

Medmerry: Porthole Farm - There were 50+ Swifts, 200+ House Martins and a handful of Swallows over the fields this morning, and a Reed Warbler singing from bushes, but there was not much else to report beyond a few Stock Doves and a couple of Whitethroats and Yellowhammers. (AH)

Swift (above), Swallow & House Martins at Medmerry (AH)

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