Thursday, 7 May 2020

7th - 9th May 2020

Saturday, 9th May: Another lovely morning's weather, with plenty of sunshine in the light north-easterly breeze..... .

Selsey Bill: It is beginning to look like spring passage is drawing to a close, though there were still a few bits going east, including 11 Whimbrel, four Grey Plovers and a pair of Shovelers.
(0535-0800hrs) (NE, F2)
Great Northern Diver – 1os
Fulmar – 1E, 4W
Gannet – 30E, 4W
Shelduck – 2E
Shoveler – 2E
Common Scoter – 2E
Oystercatcher – 2E
Grey Plover – 4E
Dunlin – 2
Curlew – 1E
Whimbrel – 11E
Black-headed Gull – 59E
Mediterranean Gull – 2E
Common Gull – 4E
Kittiwake – 1os
Sandwich Tern – 50os
Common Tern – 30os
Little Tern – 4os
Swallow – 2N
House Martin – 2
Pied Wagtail – 1

This afternoon an Arctic Skua and a Red-throated Diver east were the highlights.
Red-throated Diver – 1E
Fulmar – 1W
Gannet – 13E, 5W, 6os
Oystercatcher – 5E
Arctic Skua – 1E
Sandwich Tern – 16os
Common Tern – 60os
Little Tern – 2os
Razorbill – 1E
auk sp – 1W
Swallow – 3E

Sandwich Terns (above) & Shoveler at the Bill (AH)

Ferry Pool: A male Black-winged Stilt was on the pool this morning, remaining till at least early afternoon, and a drake Garganey was also present and showing uncharacteristically well.
Of the more regular species, there were still three Avocets, eight Black-tailed Godwits, ten Gadwall and c30 Shelducks, with a Reed Warbler singing at the front.

Black-winged Stilt (above) & Garganey at the Ferry (AH)

Both the Black-winged Stilt and the Garganey were present all day, whilst later on a probable White Wagtail was on the pool as well as a Greenshank, three Little Ringed Plovers and up to eight Avocets.
Also, a Redstart was seen in Yeoman's Field.

Black-winged Stilt (above) & White Wagtail on the Ferry (SH

Church Norton: A female Golden Oriole circled around just east of Greenlease Farm, before dropping into the trees, but unfortunately it could not be relocated.
Also, two Red Kites went over, but otherwise it was just the regular Whitethroats, Blackcaps and Linnets around the hedges, whilst in the harbour there were up to 30 Little Terns, 20 Common Terns and 80 Sandwich Terns, along with five Whimbrel, four Grey Plovers, a Ringed Plover, a Curlew and five Little Egrets.

Red Kite (above), Linnet & Sandwich Terns at Church Norton (AH)

Park Farm, Selsey: A pair of Lapwings were on the fields today.

North Wall: A lovely morning, with Stock Doves on Pagham Church, and everything singing along the Wall - Reed, Sedge and Cetti's Warblers, Reed Buntings, Whitethroats and Linnets, and a lot of activity in Owl Copse, with Cattle and Little Egrets and Grey Herons all seen together and the hawthorn in full blossom making it look as if it has been dusted with snow.
Also, four Tufted Ducks were on Honer reservoir, two Red-legged Partridges were nearby and seven Yellowhammers and two Cuckoos were along Pagham Rife though not a single wader was along White's Creek and the Breech Pool there were just 10 Tufted Ducks and two Gadwall.

Cattle and Little Egrets, Cattle and Little Egrets and Grey Heron, Sedge Warbler and Owl Copse at the North Wall (AH)

East Head: A pair of Ringed Plovers were enjoying the relative peace on the beach today.

Ringed Plovers at East Head (MR)

Medmerry: Highlights this morning included a Corn Bunting at Toe End, two Sandelings in the tidal area by the breach, a family of Fox cubs along the banks and 11 Avocets on the Stilt Pool.

Fox cubs (above) & Marsh Frog at Medmerry (SH)

Bank Holiday Friday, 8th May: A warm morning, with hazy sunshine and just a light north-easterly breeze..... .

Selsey Bill: It was very quiet this morning, with highlights being an Arctic Skua, two Bonxies, 14 Sanderling, 12 Whimbrel and 36 Bar-tailed Godwits east.
Later on, seven Brent Geese dropped in on the sea.
(0530-0730hrs) (NE, F2)
Great Northern Diver – 1os
Gannet – 33E, 2os
Common Scoter – 13E
Sparrowhawk – 1
Oystercatcher – 5E
Sanderling – 14E
Dunlin – 11E
Bar-tailed Godwit – 36E
Whimbrel – 12E, 1W
Curlew – Turnstone - 2
Arctic Skua – 1E
Great Skua – 2E
Sandwich Tern – 12os
Common tern – 18os
Little Tern – 2os
auk sp – 1W

Great Northern Diver - 1os
Red-throated Diver - 1E
Fulmar - 1E, 3W
Gannet - 12E, 9W
Brent Goose - 7os
Common Scoter – 5E, 2W
Oystercatcher - 5E
Turnstone - 5W
Sandwich Tern - 50E, 6W, 15os
Common Tern - 2E
Little Tern - 3E
Swift - 2N
Swallow - 17N
House Martin - 2N, 5 on estate

Sanderling (above) & Brent Geese at the Bill (AH)

Ferry Pool: A Greenshank and two Black-tailed Godwits commuted between the pool and the channel opposite, and there were also three Avocets, a Lapwing and five Redshanks around the pool, along with 12 Gadwall and c30 Shelduck.
There was plenty of song from the breeding warblers around the Tramway circuit, including two or three Lesser Whitethroats and Chiffchaffs, half a dozen Blackcaps and at least ten Whitethroats, with a Sedge Warbler and two Reed Warblers in Red Barn Ditch.

Chiffchaff (above), Lesser Whitethroat, Whitethroat & Gadwall around the Ferry (aH)

Sidlesham: A Red Kite and a Buzzard went over a garden in the middle of the village at 1pm, and a Cuckoo was calling nearby.

Halsey's Farm: A female-type Pied Flycatcher was along the hedge by the water trough, but was typically elusive, whilst a male Redstart and two Cuckoos were around the hedges at Owl Point.

North Wall: A Little Tern and a Common Sandpiper were in Whites Creek, with the tern catching a fish near the sluice before retreating back up the harbour.

Medmerry: Easton Lane to the Stilt Pool - There was no sign of the Spoonbill on the Stilt Pool this morning, though a Common Sandpiper, an Oystercatcher and ten Avocets were present, whilst a male Stonechat was nearby.
Three Egyptian Geese were on the new reservoirs, whilst nearby a Whimbrel out on the mud near the poplars was the only other wader seen, whilst two Cuckoos were heard from the Ham vicinity and the hedges held half a dozen Yellowhammers and Reed Buntings and plenty of Whitethroats, Skylarks and Linnets.

Medmerry: Windmill to the Breach - There was a smart, possible Greenland-type, Wheatear on the beach by the windmill, with a pair of Swallows collecting nesting material and a Ringed Plover nearby and half a dozen Sandwich Terns offshore, but the breach area was very quiet, with just a pair of Meadow Pipits and a pair of Skylarks on the rough ground and a single Whimbrel and four Oystercatchers the only waders on the tidal areas.

Wheatear (above), Swallow, Ringed Plover, Sandwich Tern & baby Rabbits at Medmerry (aH)

Thursday, 7th May: A pleasant morning of sun and light cloud, with the breeze moderate and drifting round from north-east to south-east....

Selsey Bill: The first two Velvet Scoters of the year went east, along with 100+ Common Scoters, a Bonxie and 11 Pomarine Skuas, including nine together at 6.28am, though otherwise little was on the move.
Later, both an Osprey and a Red Kite were seen overhead, appearing from inland, just to the west of the Bill.
Late this afternoon a further four Pomarine Skuas went east, including three together, and a very late flock of six Brent Geese.
(0515-1000hrs) (NE, F4, veering to SE, F3)
Great Northern Diver – 1os
Red-throated Diver – 1E
Fulmar – 3W
Gannet – 244E, 4W
Mallard -2E
Common Scoter – 69E
Velvet Scoter – 2E
Dunlin – 3E
Arctic Skua – 5E
Pomarine Skua – 11E
Great Skua – 1E, 1W, 1os
Black-headed Gull – 7E
Mediterranean Gull – 2e
Kittiwake – 33E
Sandwich Tern – 33E, 51os
Common Tern – 7E, 23os
Commic Tern – 6E
Little Tern – 16os
Razorbill – 3W
Guillemot – 1E, 1os
auk sp – 1E, 4W
Yellow Wagtail – 1N
Swallow – 1N, 8E

Great Northern Diver – 1E
Gannet – 18E, 6W
Common Scoter – 36E
Osprey – 1
Red Kite - 1
Whimbrel – 1E
Great Skua – 1E
Little tern – 2E
Common Tern – 3E
Sandwich Terns - 20+E
auk sp – 2W

(1530-1815hrs) (SE, F3-4)
Gannet – 11E, 1W
Brent Goose – 6E
Curlew – 2E
Whimbrel – 1E
Great Skua – 2E
Pomarine Skua – 4E
Sandwich tern – 20os
Common Tern – 20os
Little Tern - 6os

Red-throated Diver (above), Kittiwake, Little Tern, Sandwich Tern & Common Tern at the Bill (AH)

Ferry Pool: A Greenshank, 21 Black-tailed Godwits, three Dunlin, three Avocets and eight Redshank were on the pool this morning, along with ten Gadwall and c30 Shelducks, with a lone whimbrel in the channel opposite.
Also a pair - and probably two - of Little Ringed Plovers were hidden around the concealed pool.

Greenshank (above) & Black-tailed Godwits at the Ferry (AH)

Later on, an Osprey went west over the Visitor Centre (and was surely the same bird seen at the Bill fifteen minutes later)..

Osprey at the Ferry (AW)

Halsey's Farm: Two Whinchats were in the fields today, with the usual Whitethroats, Lesser Whitethroats and Blackcaps singing in the hedges and two Early Purple Orchids in the fields.

East Head: There were up to 40 Avocets around Snowhill Creek and adjacent bits of the harbour this morning, along with a single Greenshank.

Fishbourne Creek: The highlight of a walk from Fishbourne to Dell Quay was a Wheatear on the horse paddocks at Apuldram, where there were at least a couple of Swallows and House Martins, whilst along the path were four Cetti's Warblers, four Reed Warblers, seven Whitethroats, a Blackcap, two Yellowhammers and a Reed Bunting, and there were  Cuckoos calling at both Dell Quay and Fishbourne. 
In the harbour there were 13 Turnstone at Dell Quay and six Whimbrel, a Greenshank, a Common Sandpiper and a Redshank along the channel.  There were also five Great Crested Grebes, 136 Mute Swan and a Brent Goose on the water, with two Common Terns feeding above Dell Quay, whilst two Red Kites drifted east.

Church Norton: A Short-eared Owl - a very late first for the year - was flushed from the spit by crows and drifted off up the harbour late this morning. Also, a female-type Pied Flycatcher was in the field with the sheep, though fairly quickly disappeared, but there were no other indications of migration.
At least 15 Little Terns, 20+ Common Terns and 100+ Sandwich Terns were feeding in the harbour on the rising tide, but there were no waders about at all, save a couple of Curlews.

Short-eared Owl (above), Little Tern, Sandwich Tern & Whitethroat at Church Norton (AH)

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