Wednesday, 29 January 2020

29th - 31st January 2020

Friday, 31st January: Another dank and dreary morning, fairly mild, though with intermittent drizzle and a blustery westerly breeze.....

Selsey Bill: Absolutely nothing was moving beyond the regular offshore birds. Full log below. (SR/IP/AH)
(0800-0845hrs) (WSW, F4)
Gannet - 1E
Brent Goose - 4W
Common Gull - 1W
Mediterranean Gull - 2W, 2os
Sandwich Tern - 2W

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

Ferry Pool: There were at least 40 Shoveler, 60 Wigeon and 100 Teal, plus a dozen Shelducks around the pool, but nothing else, save a passing Buzzard. (AH)

Shoveler (above) & Wigeon at the Ferry (AH)

North Wall: A bit bleak along the Wall this morning and only a Raven and a few Curlew to report, whilst the horse paddocks still held two Redwings, at least three Song Thrushes, a Kestrel and a Green Woodpecker. (IH)

Marsh Farm, Sidlesham: A total of 24 Cattle Egrets were around the dairy buildings this morning, whilst nine Little Egrets were together in the fields towards Bramber, where there were also 75 Shelducks, c40 Curlew, c200 Brent Geese, a Mediterranean Gull and a few Common Gulls among the many Black-headed and Herring Gulls.
Small birds were at a premium, though a couple of Pied Wagtails and Meadow Pipits were seen, plus a Song Thrush, a couple of Goldcrests and a few Chaffinches. (AH/IP)

Cattle Egrets (above) & Shelducks at Marsh Farm, Sidlesham (AH)

Thursday, 30th January: A pretty dismal morning, with persistent drizzly rain and a brisk breeze, south-easterly early on before veering south-westerly.....

Selsey Bill: Poor visibility meant little was noted, though five Sandwich Terns were again offshore and a flock of 40 Brent Geese went west. (SR/IP/MO-W/AH)
(0800-0930hrs) (SE, F4)
Great Crested Grebe - 1os
Brent Goose - 40W, 1os
Red-breasted Merganser - 3E
Oystercatcher - 3
Mediterranean Gull - 2os
Common Gull - 1W
Sandwich Tern - 5os

This afternoon, at around 1530hrs, a Shag drifted past the Bill riding the strong current taking it west. (AW)

Sandwich Tern (above), Red-breasted Merganser & Mediterranean Gull at the Bill (AH)

Shag drifting past the Bill (AW)

Ferry Pool: Two Snipe were still by the roadside reeds, whilst at least 50 Shoveler were on the pool, along with similar of Teal and a dozen Shelducks, with c100 Wigeon and Lapwing spread across the field. (AH)

Snipe and Teal (above) & Shovelers at the Ferry (AH)

Church Norton: At least 100 Knot were among the many Dunlin and Grey Plover out on the mud, whilst a few Wigeon and Teal were also present, along with a half-heartedly displaying pair of Great Crested Grebes, but generally it was very quiet. (AH)

Wigeon (above), Grey Plover & Knot at Church Norton (AH)

Wednesday, 29th January: Another bright and breezy day, chilly early on but warming up as the morning progressed, but still with a fresh westerly.....

Selsey Bill: A new record winter count of Sandwich Terns - 16 in total - was the highlight of a quiet morning. Full log below. (SR/IP/MO-W/AH)
(0800-0930hrs) (WSW, F4-5)
Great Northern Diver - 1os
Red-throated Diver - 4E
Common Scoter - 1E
Red-breasted Merganser - 6E, 4os
Oystercatcher - 1E
Turnstone - 1W
Common Gull - 1W, 1os
Mediterranean Gull - 2os
Sandwich Tern - 16os
auk sp - 1E, 4W

Sandwich Tern (above), Mediterranean Gull & Common Gull at the Bill (AH)

Ferry Pool: One Snipe was down by the road, whilst there were c50 Shoveler, c50 Teal and a dozen Shelduck on the pool and c100 Wigeon and Lapwings on the field. (AH)

Snipe (above) & Shovelers on the Ferry (AH)

North Wall: Song Thrushes (5), Redwings (2), Pied Wagtails (2), a Grey Wagtail and a Kestrel all made their customary appearances in the horse paddocks this morning.  Along the Wall, the  numbers of Brent Geese, Curlew and Lapwing were in the partially flooded fields and harbour were similar  to yesterday, whilst a group of Long-tailed Tits came through and a few Reed Buntings could be found in the shrubs. (IH)

Medmerry: Ham Road/Old House Farm - A flock of around 50 Fieldfares were on the stubble fields with a dozen Pied Wagtails and c300 Starlings, and two different Sparrrowhawks shot through. Also, a Chiffchaff was along the hedges up to Old House Farm. (AH)

Fieldfare at Medmerry (AH)

Sunday, 26 January 2020

26th - 28th January 2020

Tuesday, 28th January: A bright and breezy morning, with a very brisk and decidedly chilly westerly blowing throughout....

Selsey Bill: Two Slavonian Grebes west, four Red-throated Divers east and four Common Scoters were the highlights this morning. Full log below....
0800-1000hrs: (wind W6-7)  (OM/IP/M-OW)
Red-throated Diver - 4E
diver sp - 2E
Slavonian Grebe - 2W
Great Crested Grebe - 1W
Gannet - 3W
Common Scoter - 4 os
Red-breasted Merganser - 11W, 4 os
Turnstone - 8W
Sandwich Tern - 3os drifted W
Common Gull - 2E, 1W

Ferry Pool: A total of 36 Avocets were at the back of the pool this morning, along with c40 Shoveler, 15 Shelducks and c75 Teal, with 100+ Lapwing on/over the field. (AH)

Avocets (above) & Lapwings at the Ferry (AH)

Honer Reservoir: There were ten Tufted Ducks on a very full reservoir, but there wasn't much to be found in the flooded fields beyond a Grey Heron and c30 Shelducks. (AH)

Grey Heron at Honer Reservoir (AH)

North Wall: The horse paddocks held two Redwings, two Pied Wagtails, a Grey Wagtail, at least three Song Thrushes and a few Blackbirds, but there were few other passerines about.
There was a huge gathering of Brent Geese - at least 2500 birds - that visited all the fields behind the wall and the harbour, in the company of 100+ Curlews and Black-tailed Godwits and at least 50 Teal and 500 Wigeon.
Besides the aforementioned species, the harbour held at least 1000 Lapwing, plenty of Knot, Dunlin and Grey Plovers and 30+ Shelduck. (IH/AH)

Brent Geese (above), Brent Geese and Curlews, Curlews & Wigeon and Teal at the North Wall (AH)

Chi Marina: There was nothing on the windswept pool and reedbed this morning. In the channel were 15 Red-breasted Mergansers, a handful of Brent Geese and a dozen Common Gulls, plus a few Great Crested and Little Grebes, though viewing conditions were difficult in the penetrating wind. Further along the channel, looking towards Dell Quay from Salterns Copse, at least four Goldeneye and several Red-breasted Mergansers and Great Crested Grebes were present but there was little else on offer. (OM)

Birdham Pool: The footpaths were well flooded and the water level in the pool was high, with quite a number of wildfowl semi-obscured amongst overhanging (and partly submerged) tree roots and vegetation. As a result there was no sign of the Mandarin, but at least 60 Teal and 15 Little Grebes were present with a few Tufted and Mallards, whilst a dozen Cormorants were roosting. (OM)

Monday, 27th January: After heavy overnight rain, a grey and blustery morning, with a fresh south-westerly breeze....

Selsey Bill: Six Red-throated Divers went east and five Sandwich Terns were offshore as the highlights. (AH/IP/MO-W) 
(0800-0930hrs) (SSW, F4)
Great Northern Diver - 1os
Red-throated Diver - 6E
Great Crested Grebe - 1W, 2os
Gannet - 4E, 22W
Brent Goose - 6E
Red-breasted Merganser - 4E, 5W
Dunlin - 25W
Mediterranean Gull - 1W, 3os
Common Gull - 1E, 5W
Sandwich Tern - 5os
auk sp - 4W

Sandwich Terns (above) & Mediterranean Gull at the Bill (AH)

Ferry Pool: About 40 Shovelers, 40 Teal, 12 Shelducks and a pair  of Gadwall were on the pool, with 50 or so Wigeon on the field. (AH)

Shovelers on the Ferry (AH)

Church Norton: Four Red-breasted Mergansers flew west offshore, with another two flying east out of the harbour this morning, whilst at least 100 Knot were among the many Dunlin and Grey Plovers out on the mud.
Three Snipe were on the creek by the horse field, but otherwise it was quiet, with three Mistle Thrushes and a Buzzard at Greenlease Farm the only other species of note. (AH/IP)

Snipe (above), Red-breasted Mergansers & Knot, Dunlin and Grey Plovers at Church Norton (AH)

Sunday, 26th January: It remained grey and murky, but a shift to a freshening south-westerly presaged a return to wet and windy conditions by the afternoon....

Selsey Bill: Little on the move again, though a couple of flocks of Grey Plover and Dunlin going west broke the monotony. Full log below. (SH/PB/SR/BI/SR/IP/M-OW/AH)
(0740-0930hrs) (SW, F4-5)
Red-throated Diver - 4E
Great Crested Grebe - 3W
Shag - 1E
Brent Goose - 3W
Red-breasted Merganser - 1E, 1W
Grey Plover - 50W
Dunlin - 330-W
Sandwich Tern - 5E, 5W
Razorbill - 1E, 4os

(1445-1545hrs)  (S/SW6)  (SH)
Red-throated Diver - 1E, 1W
Great Northern Diver - 2os
Fulmar - 2W
Gannet - 8W
Shag - 3W, 1os
Sandwich Tern - 2W
Kittiwake - 1W

Sandwich Tern at the Bill (AH)

Ferry Pool: A couple of Snipe were down by the road, whilst about 50 Shoveler, 200 Wigeon and Teal and a few were on the water, all disturbed by a man walking along the far bank. (AH)
Later a Merlin was at the back of the pool. (RJS/A&YF)

Shoveler and Wigeon (above) & Teal at the Ferry (AH)

Park Farm, Selsey: A Stonechat and 20+ Meadow Pipits were around the fields, whilst a Peregrine and nine Brent Geese went over and five Tufted Ducks were on the reservoir. (S&SaH)

Church Norton: Two Ravens and a Buzzard were over the Priory and two Peregrines were out hunting over the harbour this morning. (S&SaH)

Fishbourne Creek: The Long-tailed Duck wasn't about this morning, but there were six Goldeneye present and a Jack Snipe was in their usual area, along with a Sparrowhawk, a Stonechat, at least ten Rock Pipits and a Grey Wagtail.
At least three Greenshank, c60 Curlews and c250 Black-tailed Godwits were among large numbers of Redshank, Dunlin and Grey Plovers on the rising tide, along with 200 Wigeon, at least 500 Brent Geese and up to 300 Common Gulls. (AH/IP)

Jack Snipe (above), Greenshank, Rock Pipit, Stonechat, Black-tailed Godwits, Grey Plover and Dunlin & Common Gulls at Fishbourne Creek (AH)

North WallThere was little activity in either the horse paddocks or along the Wall this morning apart from 50 Curlew in Honer 3 field. However, there were plenty of Lapwing and Golden Plover swirling overhead and Whites Creek was full of Brent Geese, Knot, Dunlin, Black-tailed Godwit, Shelduck, Pintail and Grey Plover as well as, of course, Wigeon and Teal. (IH/SP)

Thursday, 23 January 2020

23rd - 25th January 2019

Saturday, 25th January: A hint more breeze, from the south, but it remains grey and overcast....

Selsey Bill: The first Black-thoated Diver of the year, heading west, and a couple of Shags and Sandwich Terns east were the highlights of a slow morning. Full log later. (JA/SH/BI/AH/SR/MO-W/IP)
(0730-0900hrs) (SSE, F3)
Black-throated Diver - 1W
Red-throated Diver - 1E, 1W
Great Crested Grebe - 2E, 2W, 1os
Shag - 2E
Red-breasted Merganser - 4W
Common Gull - 1E, 1W
Mediterranean Gull - 1os
Sandwich Tern - 2E

(1405-1435hrs): (CBC/MaC) Very quiet, the only birds of note were Mediterranean Gulls 10E and Sandwich Tern 1W.

Shag at the Bill (AH)

Ferry Pool: There were five Snipe tucked in by the road again this morning, but the pool only held eight Shelduck and 20 Teal, with two Gadwall flying over into the harbour. 
Most of the wildfowl, including a handful of Shoveler and Mallard, c50 Teal and c150 Wigeon were on the flood opposite the Visitor centre. (AH)

Snipe (above), Shoveler & Wigeon at the Ferry (AH)

Drayton House Pit: A Marsh Harrier appeared briefly, but otherwise it was quiet beyond c50 Shoveler and c100 Pochard on the water. (AH)

Marsh Harrier at Drayton Pit (AH)

Park Farm, Selsey: A pair of Gadwall and four Tufted Ducks were on the reservoir this morning. (IP/RM)

Church Norton: A single Slavonian Grebe was close offshore and a dozen Snipe were in the creek by the horse field, but the harbour was fairly quiet, though the Peregrine on its island, and three Bar-tailed Godwits and c100 Knot were among the commoner waders. (IP/RM)
Later there were two Goldeneye in the harbour and plenty of waders, with the Peregrine still present. (SH)

North Wall: This morning the horse paddocks contained the same assortment as yesterday: Kestrel, Grey Wagtail, Redwings, Song Thrush and several Blackbirds. Long-tailed Tits were present at the sluice gates but the Wall was quiet apart from a calling Cetti's Warbler, while the main body of Brent Geese were out in the harbour. 
Later, both a Barn Owl and a Marsh Harrier again appeared mid afternoon. (IH)

Medmerry: Easton Lane to the Stilt Pool - A very quiet walk along the banks produced just a  pair of Stonechats and a few Meadow Pipits and Skylarks this morning, plus a flock of c.50 Linnets on the back fields, whilst the Stilt Pool held six Gadwall, four Ringed Plovers and four Dunlin. (OM)

Chainbridge to Ham viewpoint: Raptors consisted of a Buzzard, three Kestrels and a Peregrine, whilst otherwise there were just eight Brent Geese, 160+ Lapwings and three Stonechats seen. (S&SaH)

Chichester Canal: A look along the canal west of Donnington produced six Yellowhammers, a Reed Bunting, a Fieldfare, c20 Redwings, four Greenfinches and plenty of Goldfinches, plus several calling Little Grebes.
Also, on the adjacent ploughed field there were a pair of Mistle Thrushes and c85 Golden Plovers. (AH)

Golden Plovers (above), Yellowhammer & Reed Bunting at Chichester Canal (AH)

Itchenor Village Pond: There wasn't much of note here, though a handful of Stock Doves were on the nearby fields and a Green Woodpecker, a couple of Goldcrests and c20 Long-tailed Tits were in the trees. (AH)

Stock Dove (above) & Long-tailed Tit at Itchenor Village Pond (AH)

Fishbourne Creek: We spent a couple of hours here from 1130-1330 and species of note were a female Long-tailed Duck showing well in the Lavant outfall channel and 10 Goldeneye including 3 adult males. (CBC/MaC)

Chichester channel: A Great Northern Diver was present in the channel around 1500hrs (HB) (exact area not specified - Eds). 

Friday, 24th January: It remains fairly still and gloomy, with heavy cloud persisting....

Selsey Bill: Two Shags flew east and two Fulmars went west, a few Red-throated Divers and a Sandwich Tern went west, but it was otherwise very quiet. Full log below. 
(0745-0900hrs) (wind NNE F1) (BI/SR/AH/IP)
Red-throated Diver - 1E, 7W
Great Northern Diver - 2os
Fulmar - 2W
Shag - 2E
Brent Goose -3W
Red-breasted Merganser - 5E, 1W, 2os
Turnstone - 5E
Sandwich Tern  1W
auk sp. - 3E

Shags at the Bill (AH)

Ferry Pool: There were at least six Snipe tucked away by the road-side reeds, whilst at least 40 Shoveler and 75 Teal, plus half a dozen Shelducks were on the pool.
Also, at least 25 Avocets and 100+ Black-tailed Godwits were roosting at the far end of Ferry Channel, viewed from the Tramway. (AH)

Snipe on the Ferry (AH)

East Head: Just nine Eider were off the harbour mouth, seen from the boat this morning, after eight on Tuesday and five on Wednesday. (CW)

Fishbourne Creek: The Long-tailed Duck was present again this morning, towards the Lavant outfall with five Goldeneyes. (SR)

West Wittering: Four Egyptian Geese were in road-side fields at Cakeham this morning, before flying off east. (MR)

Egyptian Geese at West Wittering (MR)

North Wall: The Kestrel, three Song Thrushes, the Grey Wagtail and a number of Blackbirds were all present in the horse paddocks again this morning.  Little stirred along the Wall however,  but there was more life between Marsh and Honer Farms where some 2,000 Brent Geese together with a few Curlew and a small flock of Starlings inhabited the usual field. (IH)
Two Marsh Harriers and a Barn Owl were hunting over the reed beds mid afternoon, a Bar-tailed Godwit was visible distantly in the harbour, the Brent Geese were still in the Marsh/Honer Farms area and apparently six Song Thrushes could be found with the Grey Wagtail in the horse paddocks. (IH/SP)

Marsh Farm, Sidlesham: Four Egyptian Geese were here, too, late this morning, near the farm buildings, whilst at least 20 Cattle Egrets were in the fields towards Bramber among a large flock of Black-headed Gulls.and a Raven went over east.
The hedges and fields were quiet, though, with just a few Meadow Pipits and Pied Wagtails, plus half a dozen Stock Doves and a couple of Goldcrests noted. (AH)

Egyptian Geese (above), Cattle Egrets, Raven, Stock Doves & Goldcrest at Marsh Farm, Sidlesham (AH)

Church Norton: A quick look this morning produced two female Goldeneyes in the harbour, along with plenty of Dunlin and Grey Plovers and a few Teal and Wigeon, whilst at least a dozen Snipe were in the creek by the horse field, the two Peregrines were on their island and a Sparrowhawk went over. (AH/IP)

Snipe (above), Goldeneyes, Teal & Grey Plovers at Church Norton (AH)

Thursday, 23rd January: Another dank sort of a day, with heavy cloud and a moderate north-easterly breeze, though slightly milder than of late....

Selsey Bill: Half a dozen Sandwich Terns were offshore and a few Red-throated Divers went both ways, but it remains quiet. Full log below. (SR/AH/MO-W/PC)
(0800-0945hrs) (ENE, F4)
Great Northern Diver - 1W
Red-throated Diver - 6E, 5W
diver sp - 1W
Gannet - 1E, 3W
Common Scoter - 1os
Red-breasted Merganser - 6E, 9os
Common Gull - 5E
Mediterranean Gull - 1W
Sandwich Tern - 2E, 1W, 6os
Razorbill - 1E, 1W
auk sp - 13W
Turnstone - 1W

Common Scoter (above) & Gannet at the Bill (AH)

Ferry Pool: There were just a handful of Lapwing and Teal on the pool, with more of the latter and a few Wigeon in the channel opposite. (AH)

Lapwings and Teal on the Ferry (AH)

North Wall: In the horse paddocks this morning were ten Blackbirds, three Song Thrushes, two Redwings and a Grey Wagtail, all overseen by the regular Kestrel on a post. In the nearby Ash, a Green Woodpecker was present and a Long-tailed Tit and Goldcrest were in the hedgerows.  
Along the Wall a Water Rail called and a Reed Bunting flitted about while between Marsh and Honer Farms about 2,000 Brent Geese grazed. (IH)

Fishbourne Creek: The long-staying Long-tailed Duck was showing well off of Dell Quay this morning on the high tide, and there were also eight Goldeneyes and up to four Red-breasted Mergansers on the water, along with a few Little and Great Crested Grebes. Wildfowl numbers were low, doubtless due to the man shooting near the Lavant outflow, though half a dozen Pintails were among the 50 or so Wigeon present and c300 Brent Geese flew over.
At least five Greenshank were among the tightly packed roosting waders, whilst c150 Black-tailed Godwits and c40 Turnstones were disturbed by a boat and a Kingfisher flew along the harbour edge.
There were up to ten Rock Pipits in their usual area, but fairly flighty, and a Stonechat was nearby, but the only other passerines seen were a few Long-tailed Tits. (AH).

Long-tailed Duck (above), Goldeneyes, Red-breasted Merganser, Great Crested Grebe, Black-tailed Godwits, Rock Pipit & Stonechat at Fishbourne Creek (AH)

Chi GPs: Drayton House pits - Highlights this morning were a Woodcock which flew up from a damp copse, a single Snipe and the pair of Coal Tits. It was otherwise fairly mundane, with all the regular wildfowl present in fairly average numbers, though Shoveler were pushing the 150 mark. Later a single Marsh Harrier was present over the North pit. (OM)

Coal Tit at Drayton House North pit (OM)

Ivy Lake complex - with undergrowth clearance and noisy chain saws in action I avoided the 'main' pits and concentrated on New Lake and beyond. There wasn't too much on New Lake itself however, with less Shovelers than recently, though the Treecreeper, a Goldcrest and a Great Spotted Woodpecker were present.
Runcton Lake held a few Pochard and Tufted, plus a Cetti's Warbler and 12 Long-tailed Tits, whilst Vinnetrow Lake held 33 Pochard, 45 Tufted Ducks and another Great Spotted Woodpecker and Peckham Lake held just a few more Pochard and Tufted. (OM)

Itchenor: The Great Northern Diver was present in the channel again between Itchenor and Cobnor, whilst a Raven passed overhead. (PH)