Saturday, 28 November 2020

28th - 30th November 2020

Monday, 30th November: A cold, very grey morning, after a foggy start, that only cleared as the westerly breeze freshened......

Selsey Bill: Presumably the same Goldeneye as seen in recent mornings went west among eight Razorbills and a few Kittiwakes and Common Scoters were about, but apart from a Lapwing over west it was quiet in the poor visibility. Full log below. (AH/RP/MO-W/IP)
(0730-0915hrs) (W, F3-4)
Great Northern Diver - 1E
Gannet - 2W
Wigeon - 2W
Goldeneye - 1W
Common Scoter - 8E, 10W
Lapwing - 1W
Oystercatcher - 1W
Dunlin - 18W
Turnstone - 8
Lesser Black-backed Gull - 5W
Mediterranean Gull - 6W
Common Gull - 5W
Kittiwake - 8W
Razorbill - 8W
Pied Wagtail - 2E, 3W

Ferry Pool: There were nine Snipe, 14 Avocets, c200 Lapwings and c60 Black-tailed Godwits on the pool this morning, along with  about 20 Teal and 60 Shovelers. (AH)
Also, a Marsh Harrier went over and a Razorbill was in Ferry Channel. (AM)

Marsh Farm, Sidlesham: There was a family of two adult and three juvenile White-fronted Geese in the fields along Church Farm Lane this morning, part of an influx into the wider county in the last few days. Also, a pair of Stonechats were nearby. (BL/AH/IP/AB/BI et al)
The Glossy Ibis was present again nearby, too (BL).

White-fronted Geese at Marsh Farm, Sidlesham (AH)

Park Farm, Selsey: A pair of apparent Pink-footed Geese went west over the farm late this morning. (IP/MO-W)

Medmerry: Ham Farm to the Breach - There was a Barnacle Goose among the Brent Geese near Ham Farm this morning, whilst a Goldeneye was on the water offshore. Also, c.200 Golden Plovers flew over and there were 20 Yellowhammers along the hedges. (BI)

Barnacle Goose with Brent Geese at Ham (BI)

Pagham Spit: A Guillemot was in the breached small lagoon and there were also eight Red-breasted Mergansers about, six of which were drakes. (TG-P)

Church Norton: A Merlin, a Peregrine and the pair of Marsh Harriers were all in the harbour this morning, once the fog had lifted, along with the Whimbrel, an Avocet, four Black-tailed Godwits and lots of the commoner waders, with a Snipe in the creek by the horse field.
There were a lot of Brent Geese about the harbour, too, with a selection of rockets and firecrackers being used to scare them off the fields at Greenlease Farm, whilst there were also at least a dozen Pintail and plenty of Wigeon and Teal.
There were nine Common Scoters, two Great Northern Divers, two Red-throated Divers, two Red-breasted Mergansers, two Gannets and a Guillemot seen offshore, whilst passerines included a Dartford Warbler, two Stonechats and a few Meadow Pipits. (AH/IP/MO-W/AT et al)

Marsh Harrier (above), Merlin, Avocet, Snipe & Brent Geese at Church Norton (AH)

North Wall: Two Redwings emerged through early morning fog in Church Lane and two Stonechats and a Song Thrush were present in the horse paddocks where a Marsh Harrier could also be seen.  The hedgerows were again quiet apart from an occasional Reed Bunting but there were two Goldcrests near Halsey's Farm while over the harbour were flocks of Lapwing and Golden Plover.  (IH/LP)
Later, 52 Cattle Egrets and 60+ Fieldfares were in the North Fields. (TG-P)

Sunday, 29th November: A lovely cold and bright morning, with just a light north-easterly breeze......

Selsey Bill: It was quieter than yesterday, but a Goldeneye went west and a Black-throated Diver and an Eider went east, whilst a Merlin and a Sparrowhawk came in off the sea. Full log later. (Sh/BI/AH/MO-W/IP)
(0715-0915hrs) (NNE, F4)
Black-throated Diver - 1E
Red-throated Diver - 1E, 1W
Slavonian Grebe - 1os
Gannet - 3E, 3W, 2os
Brent Goose - 1E
Shelduck - 1E
Mallard - 2E
Goldeneye - 1W
Eider - 1E
Common Scoter - 14W
Red-breasted Merganser - 9E, 2W, 11os
Sparrowhawk - 1
Merlin - 1
Turnstone - 7
Mediterranean Gull - 5E, 3W
Common Gull - 2E
Kittiwake - 2E
Razorbill - 12W
auk sp - 2E, 22W
Pied Wagtail - 1

Ferry Pool: There were six Snipe, 16 Avocets, 45 Lapwings and 79 Black-tailed Godwits on the pool this morning, along with two Shelducks, 40 or so Teal and 80 or so Shovelers. (AH)

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

Marsh Farm, Sidlesham: The Glossy Ibis was still present this morning among the Cattle Egrets. (per Birdguides)

Park Farm, Selsey: A Sparrowhawk, a Green Woodpecker and four Pied Wagtails was it this morning. (S&SaH/IP)

Selsey: A Blackcap was in the rectory garden today. (AW)

Blackcap in a Selsey garden (AW)

Church Norton: A male Marsh Harrier was over the harbour this morning, whilst a Merlin and two Fieldfares went over Norton Priory and offshore two Red-throated Divers went west and two Red-breasted Mergansers were on the sea, with another three of the latter, the female Common Scoter and c40 Pintail were among the many wildfowl in the harbour.
Also, three Stonechats and two Dartford Warblers were along the beach and a Firecrest, a Goldcrest and a Water Rail were around the Severals, whilst the Whimbrel, 100+ Knot and 300+ Golden Plovers were among the waders seen in the harbour. (A&YF/S&SaH/IP)

North Wall: A Goldcrest and another crest were amongst a flock of Tits along the approach to North Wall this morning while a Song Thrush, a Chiffchaff and a Stonechat were visible from the sluice gates together with a Marsh Harrier (three were flying together yesterday, apparently). 
The hedgerows along the Wall were very quiet apart from another Song Thrush and a Reed Bunting. (IH/DH/PC)

East Side: Two hours before high water, some 400 Lapwings were roosting on the mud accompanied by about 200 Golden Plover, while lining Whites Creek were several hundred Dunlin and Wigeon, 100 Black-tailed Godwits as well as about 30 Shelduck, a few Redshank and two Turnstones. 
On the water were more Wigeon, a few Pintail and Teal together with two Great-Crested Grebes but there were only a handful of Brent Geese to be seen in the harbour. (IH)

East Head: The two Snow Buntings were still showing well at the far end of the head this morning. (MB)

Medmerry: Windmill to the Breach - There were just two Black Redstarts about this morning - one by the workings outside the Oasis and one at the rocks by the breach.
Otherwise, there were three pairs of Stonechats and 20+ Meadow Pipits and Pied Wagtails about, but just a pair of Red-breasted Mergansers offshore and c20 Grey Plovers and c30 Dunlin and Ringed Plovers roosting in the tidal area, along with c40 Shelducks and plenty of Wigeon and Teal. (AH)

Black Redstarts (above), Stonechat & Meadow Pipit at Medmerry (AH)

Medmerry: Easton Lane to the Stilt Pool - Both a Short-eared Owl and a Merlin put in an appearance this afternoon out on the reserve near the Stilt Pool, though the banks were quiet, with two Dartford Warblers near Marsh Barn, three or four pairs of Stonechats, a handful of Yellowhammers and c20 Meadow Pipits being about it. Also, a Mistle Thrush was along Easton Lane and a Green Woodpecker was near the poplars.
A flock of c40 Common Scoter were offshore, along with a Great Northern and two Red-throated Divers, whilst a Red-breasted Merganser was in the big pool opposite Marsh Farm, but the Stilt Pool only held c 20 Gadwall and plenty of Wigeon, Teal and Canada Geese, along with c50 Lapwing, with the only other waders - c30 Black-taiiled Godwits and Redshank and a handful of Curlews - by the poplars. (AH)

Dartford Warbler (above), Merlin, Green Woodpecker & Mistle Thrush at Medmerry (AH)

Saturday, 28th November: A much brighter day than of late, and quite mild despite the brisk easterly breeze......

Selsey Bill: Two Swallows that were briefly around the Oval Field and a Goosander east were the highlights, with more birds going east than west, including quite a few Kittiwakes and a few Razorbills and Red-throated Divers. Full log below. (SH/PB/BI/AH/IP/PM/MO-W)
(0715-0930hrs) (E, F4)
Great Northern Diver - 1os
Red-throated diver - 9E, 1W
Gannet - 3e, 1w, 1os
Shag - 1E
Brent Goose - 2E, 4W
Wigeon - 2E
Common Scoter - 3E 15os
Goosander - 1E
Red-breasted Merganser - 15E, 3os
Mediterranean Gull - 31E
Common Gull - 45E
Kittiwake - 124E, 1W
Razorbill - 16E, 9os
Guillemot - 1E
auk sp - 5E, 13W
Swallow - 2E
Meadow Pipit - 2E
Pied wagtail - 7E
Linnet - 4E

Kittiwake (above), Swallow, Razorbills, Shag & Mediterranean Gull at the Bill (AH)

Ferry Pool: An Avocet and five Black-tailed Godwits were on the pool this morning, along with c50 Lapwings, two Gadwall, two Shelducks, c40 Teal and c80 Shovelers. (AH)
Also, a male Blackcap was on the feeders at the Visitor Centre, (IL) and a Kingfisher was in the channel opposite (AB).

Avocet (above) & Lapwing at the Ferry (AH)

Park Farm, Selsey: A Grey Wagtail, a pair of Green Woodpeckers, a Kestrel and a pair of Pied Wagtails were around the farm this morning. (IP/MO-W/MI)

Chichester Marina: The Bittern showed briefly in flight late this morning. (PB/PM)

Bittern at Chi Marina (PM)

East Head: The two Snow Buntings were reported as still present today. (per Twitter)

Marsh Farm, Sidlesham: The Glossy Ibis was still present, along with at least 40 Cattle Egrets, mostly close to Chalder Farm, though it could be elusive at times.
Also, in the vicinity, a Marsh Harrier went over, four Ravens were together briefly in a dead tree and c20 Stock Doves were about, but the Fieldfares were not to be seen, beyond one in Church Farm Lane, where there were also a Yellowhammer, a Stonechat, a Mistle Thrush and a Cetti's Warbler. (AH/A&YF/PB/PM/SH/B&MC)
The Glossy Ibis was still present this afternoon. (AB)

Glossy Ibis (top - PM), (above - AH), Glossy Ibis and Cattle Egrets, Raven & Stock Dove around Marsh Farm, Sidlesham (AH)

Church Norton: Four Red-throated Divers flew east offshore together, whilst in the harbour there was a pair of Marsh Harriers quartering over the salt-marsh, with three Red-breasted Mergansers, at least twenty Pintail and the female Common Scoter on the water. 
Plenty of common waders were flying about a very full harbour, including at least 40 Knot, a flock of at least 500 Lapwings and over a hundred Golden Plover, whilst a Peregrine and c450 Brent Geese were seen at Greenlease Farm. (IP/MO-W/MI)

Medmerry: Windmill to the Breach - This morning there were at least five Black Redstarts along the front of West Sands caravan park towards Toe End. 
Also, a Swallow was seen flying over and a Purple Sandpiper flew from the last of the rocks into the breach area. (AW)

Black Redstarts (above) & Purple Sandpiper at Medmerry (AH)

Chi GPs - Drayton Pits: After yesterday's report I thought I would pay a visit this morning, but it proved to be all rather mundane. The only egrets I could find were two Little Egrets and wildfowl numbers were still on the low side, although perhaps with a slight increase in Tufted Ducks, whilst 120 Teal was certainly a good number for these pits.
A mini-survey of Water Rails again revealed at least six calling/squealing birds, although some suitable areas drew a surprising blank and there surely must be even more on these pits. 
A single Snipe was in the damp grass, whilst two Bullfinches, two Reed Buntings, 15 Long-tailed Tits and two Chiffchaffs were along the hedgerows and five Cetti's Warblers were heard. Two noisy Buzzards, several even noisier Jays and a Kestrel completed my tally. (OM)

A fairly mundane visit to Drayton GPs, with plenty of Tufted Ducks (mainly foreground) and some Pochard intermingled (rear) (OM)