Sunday, 10 January 2021

10th - 13th January 2021

Wednesday, 13th January: Another grey and murky morning, still early on, but with a freshening westerly breeze and a bit of drizzly rain .....

Selsey Bill: The flock of Common Scoters - 33 in total - were joined by an Eider before it flew off west, but it remains very quiet.

Eider (above) & Common Scoters at the Bill


Ferry Pool: There were 17 Snipe in the reeds at the front this morning, but otherwise only 50 or so Lapwings, c40 Shovelers and c75 Teal were present, whilst the Kingfisher and a Little Egret were in the channel opposite.
Later on, a Dartford Warbler was in the bushes at the Tramway end of Red Barn Ditch, with a Kingfisher nearby, and a lone Avocet was on the Ferry.

Snipe (above) & Lapwing on the Ferry

Church Norton: There were a reasonable number of Brent Geese on the channel towards  the harbour entrance, along with plenty of Wigeon and the other usual fare.
A family of Long-tailed Tits and a Song Thrush were along  the path to harbour and two Green Woodpeckers were in church, whilst three coveys of 16, 12 and six Red-legged Partridges were in the vicinity.
This afternoon a Firecrest was present, whilst a Pale-bellied Brent Goose was among the flock, along with the aberrant white-headed individual.

Firecrest (above) & Pale-bellied and Dark-bellied Brent Geese at Church Norton

Long Pool: A Kestrel was on the hedge by the Long Pool with two Coots, two Mallard and a female Tufted Duck on the pool, whilst the channel at the far end held two Avocets and plenty of Wigeon, Teal and Redshank with flocks of Lapwing and Curlews going over.

Marsh Farm, Sidlesham: Not too much to report today, though at least 20 Cattle Egrets were still present and at least 30 Yellowhammers, similar of Linnets, plus a pair of Stonechats, half a dozen Long-tailed Tits and a few Skylarks and Meadow Pipits were along Church Farm Lane.
Also, a male Marsh Harrier went over the flooded fields beyond the dairy buildings, putting up at least 100 Black-tailed Godwits and 70 Curlews.

Marsh Harrier (above), Cattle and Little Egrets, Linnets and Yellowhammers, Long-tailed Tit & Curlews at Marsh Farm, Sidlesham




Pagham Lagoon: On the Lagoon were two female Goldeneye, two Pochard, 27 Tufted Ducks, nine Little Grebes and two Great Crested Grebes. 

North WallIt was very quiet across the Pagham Road fields, with just a pair of Stonechats close to the barn, whilst in the flooded fields north of Welbourne were 37 Wigeon, four Teal, 34 Dunlin, nine Redshank, 12 Curlew and a Mute Swan. Initially the Brent Geese were feeding west of Owl Copse but were disturbed and returned to the Harbour for a communal wash and brush up.... at least 2000 making their way back to the original feeding field. There was a Kingfisher and a Cormorant around the sluice gates and apart from 110 Curlew and 28 Black- tailed Godwits in Honer 1 field there was little happening along the Wall.

Cormorant (above) and Redshank at the North Wall






Tuesday, 12th January: A pretty miserable morning, early on, with leaden skies and persistent drizzly rain in a blustery westerly, though it did improve a little later.....

Selsey Bill: A flock of nine Common Scoters and a flock of eight Razorbills west were about it this morning.
Later, around an hour's watch early afternoon produced a few more species, including a Great Northern Diver, two Brent Geese, a couple of Great Crested Grebes and two Oystercatchers all heading west, with a Razorbill and five Common Scoters still present.

Common Scoters (above) & Mediterranean Gull at the Bill

Ferry Pool: There were at least 15 Snipe around the reeds and the concealed pool, where there was also an Avocet and a Redshank, whilst pool itself just held c30 Shovelers, six Shelducks and c50 Teal and the field held c200 Wigeon and c500 Lapwing, plus a Buzzard.

Avocet (above), Snipe & Buzzard at the Ferry



North Wall: A pair of Stock Doves and a Kestrel were at Shipverling Barn, whilst in the flooded fields to the west were 1080 Lapwing, 38 Shelduck, 28 Golden Plover, 26 Great Black-backed Gulls and three Redshank. 
It was very miserable along the Wall with nothing to report, and likewise White's Creek, with all the Brent Geese seeming to being north-west towards Marsh Farm.

Church Norton: At least 500 Brent Geese dominated the harbour on the rising tide, though there were at least eight Red-breasted Mergansers, two Pintail and plenty of Wigeon and Teal about, too.
The Whimbrel was up beyond the hide, whilst other waders included a couple of Bar-tailed Godwits, c100 Knot, c50 Grey Plovers and lots of Dunlin.

Red-breasted Merganser (above), Grey Plover, Knot & Dunlin and Brent Geese at Church Norton



The Merlin was back on Tern Island this afternoon, and the Whimbrel was back in its usual haunt.

Merlin (above) & Whimbrel at Church Norton

North Mundham: A walk around the local area produced a Kestrel, a Mistle Thrush, a Song Thrush and a Jay.

Ivy Lake: A look late this afternoon produced c50 Pochards and Gadwall, ten Shovelers and c20 Tufted Ducks, but not too much else of note.

Pochard on Ivy Lake




Monday, 11th January: A change back to more familiar weather, with a milder, if grey and dank morning, with a freshening south-westerly breeze.....

Selsey Bill: There were just a few of the local birds moving this morning, including five Red-throated Divers and two Ringed Plovers west and two Great Northern Divers and a Shag east.

Gannet (above), Red-breasted Merganser, Ringed Plovers & Pied Wagtail at the Bill



Ferry Pool: A flew birds were back on the pool and field today, including a Buzzard, eight Snipe, c30 Shovelers, c40 Teal and at least 250 Wigeon and Lapwing, most of which were on the field.
There were a few more Wigeon and Teal, plus a dozen Mallard in the harbour and a Little Egret was in Red Barn Ditch.

Snipe on the Ferry

Church Norton: Two Ravens went over, whilst a Firecrest, a couple of Goldcrests and a dozen Long-tailed Tits were along the sheltered hedges.
The two Peregrines were out in the harbour, along with the two female Goldeneyes and half a dozen Red-breasted Mergansers, with another half dozen of the latter offshore, along with a couple of Gannets and four Red-throated Divers, going west.
There were at least 400 Brent Geese in the harbour, along with fair numbers of Wigeon and Teal, whilst waders included a least three Bar-tailed Godwits, the Whimbrel and plenty of Dunlin, Grey Plovers and Redshanks.

Raven (above), Whimbrel, Bar-tailed Godwits, Dunlin, Brent Geese, Wigeon & Long-tailed Tit at Church Norton






North Wall: In the flooded fields north of Welbourne were 320 Lapwing, 38 Dunlin and 18 Golden Plover, whist there were 360 Brent Geese in White's Creek and hundreds more out in the Harbour. 
By the time I arrived at the end of the Wall all the Brent Geese had left the harbour and were in the field immediately west of Owl Copse - I counted 2200. 
It was generally very quiet everywhere else, with Honer Reservoir holding just 15 Gadwall, eight Tufted Duck and 39 Coot, though on the return leg a female Marsh Harrier was behind the Breech Pool.

Brent Geese (above) & Gadwall and Coot around the North Wall

Fishbourne Creek: On the low tide this afternoon there were at least 500 Brent Geese in the channel at the Lavant Outfall and a similar number below Dell Quay. 
Also, a Kingfisher was at Dell Quay, a Rock Pipit was on the sea wall and two Spotted Redshanks were actively feeding in the channel above Dell Quay.

Rock Pipit at Fishbourne Creek





Sunday, 10th January: A very cold, murky morning, after a very picturesque hoar frost, progressively foggier towards the coast, though with just a light north-west breeze.....

Selsey Bill: Visibility was very poor, but a look along the front towards the Coastguard Station produced 24 Common Scoters, four Red-breasted Mergansers, 20 Turnstones, a Mediterranean Gull and two Common Gulls, but nothing moving at all.

Common Scoters off the Bill

Ferry Pool: Once again, the pool was frozen and devoid of birds, as was the field, though the Spotted Redshank, six Redshank, two Gadwall, a Great Crested Grebe, c30 Teal and c60 Wigeon were in the channel opposite, whilst a Snipe and a Buzzard went over.
Also, a Little Egret and a Grey Heron were in Red Barn Ditch, whilst a Curlew, a Kestrel and plenty of Redshanks, Teal and Wigeon were in the harbour, with large numbers of Brent Geese keeping the skies alive in the murk and gloom.


Spotted Redshank (above) & Gadwall in Ferry Channel

Church Norton: A Mistle Thrush was in the churchyard again, whilst large number of Brent Geese and Wigeon were in the harbour and about ten Turnstones were on the beach.

Also, later, a Red-throated Diver was just offshore and the two Goldeneye were in the harbour. Two Peregrines were on their island and a group of nine Red-breasted Mergansers were in the harbour mouth, with some of the males displaying. A mixed flock of waders were flying around the increasingly foggy harbour including at least four Bar-tailed Godwits.

Peregrine (above) , Goldeneyes, Red-throated Diver, Red-breasted Merganser and mixed wader flock in the mist at Church Norton this morning.



Drayton Pits: A Bullfinch was here.

North Wall: There was little along the all beyond the odd Reed Bunting, but White's Creek and adjacent parts of the harbour held a lot of birds, including at least 800 Brent Geese, before many moved off inland, 200 Wigeon, 50 Teal, three Pintail and 20+ Shelducks.
A couple of Snipe and at least 300 Knot and 500 Lapwing were among the waders, along with 50+ Black-tailed Godwits and Grey Plovers and hundreds of Dunlin, all put up by a low-hunting Peregrine.

Peregrine (above), Snipe, Knot, Wigeon, Teal & Brent Geese at the North Wall





Medmerry: Ham Farm - A Marsh Harrier was seen from the banks this morning, and there were also eight Stonechats, 17 Fieldfares, four Song Thrushes, 20+ Yellowhammers, two Reed Buntings, 200+ Linnets around the banks and hedges, with four Snipe, 12 Golden Plovers and a Buzzard also present.. 

Medmerry: Windmill to the Breach - A Black Redstart, four Stonechats and two Song Thrushes were in the Windmill area, with another two Stonechats near the breach, where the first winter drake Eider and four Red-breasted Mergansers were on the water. 

Eider (above) & Red-breasted Mergansers at Medmerry

Medmerry: Easton Lane to the Stilt Pool - The five White-fronted Geese were again out on the reserve this morning, with a Dartford Warbler and six Stonechats along the banks, whilst a Marsh Harrier went over.

White-fronted Geese at Medmerry





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