Thursday, 14 January 2021

14th - 16th January 2020

Saturday, 16th January: A miserable morning, with a near gale-force southerly pushing through belt after belt of drizzly rain, though due to at least dry up a bit later.........

Selsey Bill: There was not an auk to be seen this morning in the poor conditions, though 65 Gannets, two Kittiwakes and a Red-throated Diver went west and two Sandwich Terns and a few Red-breasted Mergansers went east, whilst two Lesser Black-backed Gulls were on the shingle spit. Full log below.
(0750-0920hrs) (SSW, F6) 
Red-throated Diver – 1W
Gannet – 65W
Red-breasted Merganser – 9E, 3W
Turnstone – 4
Mediterranean Gull – 2E
Lesser Black-backed Gull – 2os
Kittiwake – 2W
Sandwich Tern – 2E

Gannet (above) & Lesser Black-backed Gull at the Bill (AH)

Ferry Pool: A handful of Snipe were on the concealed pool, along with 40 Teal and a few Wigeon, with just six Shelducks and c50 Shoveler on the main pool and 3-400 Lapwing on the fields at the back.

Snipe, Wigeon and Teal (above) & Wigeon and Teal at the Ferry (AH)

Northcommon Farm: A Little Owl was on the buildings at the farm late this afternoon - the first sighting in a very long time at this traditional site.

Marsh Farm, SidleshamAn afternoon visit produced a Common Buzzard, a Kestrel, 250 Black-headed Gull, 11 Cattle Egrets, a Little Egret, 20 Yellowhammers and eight Roe Deer.

Mundham to Fisher crossroads: A local walk this afternoon produced a Chiffchaff, a Green Woodpecker, two Song Thrushes and three Long-tailed Tits.

Park Farm, Selsey: There were 20 Brent Geese late morning, plus a Great Spotted Woodpecker, 30 Meadow Pipits, two Pied Wagtails and a Grey Wagtail.

Church Norton: There were plenty of waders out on the mud this morning, including a Bar-tailed Godwit, c300 Knot, c80 Grey Plovers and c500 Dunlin, whilst wildfowl included a pair of Pintail, c200 Brent Geese and a few scattered Wigeon and Teal, but that was about it, save 50 Lapwings along Rectory Lane.
Later there were five Snipe, two Bar-tailed Godwits and 20+ Mediterranean Gulls, whilst two Slavonian Grebes were offshore and at Greenlease Farm were a Buzzard, a Stonechat and a Great Spotted Woodpecker.
Later still, the Whimbrel was back in its usual haunts, 13 Bar-tailed Godwits were roosting on Tern Island, 300 Golden Plover and 100 Black-tailed Godwits went up at the other end of the harbour and three Red-breasted Mergansers and six Little Grebes were on the water.
Also, another Stonechat and four Goldcrests were around the Severals, whilst offshore a Red-throated Diver went east, a Gannet went west and seven Common Scoter were on the sea.

Bar-tailed Godwit (above), Pintail, Lapwings, Brent Geese, Knot & Knot and Shelducks at Church Norton (AH)

Friday, 15th January: A complete contrast to yesterday, with a crisply cold and bright morning in a moderate north-easterly breeze.........

Selsey Bill: There was an astonishing eastward movement of 8256 auks early this morning, all unassignable to species bar 38 Razorbills. Most were going through well beyond a mile offshore, and were moving almost continuously from first light, before a quite abrupt end to the action. 
There were also 150 or so Gannets and Kittiwakes going east, but not much more of note beyond a few divers, a Fulmar west and a Sanderling on the beach. Full log below.
(0740-0925hrs) (NE, F4)
Great Northern Diver – 1W, 2os
Red-throated Diver – 7E, 9W
Great Crested Grebe – 1os
Fulmar – 1W
Gannet – 152E, 4W
Brent Goose – 2W
Shelduck – 2E
Red-breasted Merganser – 5E, 3W, 2os
Sanderling – 1
Turnstone – 4W
Mediterranean Gull – 2W, 1os
Kittiwake – 149E
Razorbill – 38E, 1W
auk sp – 8118E, 26W

Distant auks (above), Great Northern Diver, Red-throated Divers, Sanderling & Mediterranean Gull at the Bill (AH)

Ferry Pool: There were 16 Snipe in the roadside reeds this morning, with half a dozen Black-tailed Godwits, c60 Shoveler and c100 Teal on the pool, whilst the fields held c200 Wigeon and c500 Lapwings. 

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

Long Pool: Half a dozen Reed Buntings were the only birds of note along the hedges, whilst the far end of Ferry Channel was full of birds, including the Spotted Redshank, eight Avocets, five Pintail, c300 Golden Plovers, c40 Redshanks and vast numbers of Wigeon, Teal and Lapwings.

Spotted Redshank (above), Reed Bunting, Pintails & Wigeon from the Long Pool (AH)

North Wall: Apart from a Marsh Harrier over the reed beds and three Curlew in the flooded fields there was little to see this morning along the Wall.

East Side: By contrast there were plenty of birds visible from the east side, including about 400 Brent Geese, 600 Lapwing, 200 Dunlin, 100 Black-tailed Godwit, at least 50 Shelduck, 20 Grey Plover, two Ringed Plover, 20 Pintail, 20 Curlew, six Great Black-backed Gulls, several hundred Wigeon, 200 Teal and scattered Redshank.

North Mundham to Fisher Crossroads: A Chiffchaff, two Song Thrushes and a Jay were the highlights this morning.

Medmerry: Windmill to the Breach - A Black Redstart among the the caravans near the Oasis Centre and a pair of Stonechats on the go-kart track were the only passerines of note.
The breach area held a Greenshank, a few Redshanks and Grey Plovers and plenty of Wigeon and Teal, but not much else of note, whilst around 20 Common Scoters were the only birds offshore.

Black Redstart (above), Stonechat, Greenshank & Common Scoters at Medmerry (AH)

Thursday, 14th January: Another pretty dismal morning's weather, with a fresh south-westerly pushing through belts of rain over and above the persistent drizzle.....

Selsey Bill: There were just a few Common Scoters and a couple of Red-breasted Mergansers this morning; it seems from the SOS site that all the seabirds have relocated to the far east of the county at present. Full log below.
(0800-0845hrs) (SW, F5-6) 
Great Crested Grebe – 1os
Wigeon – 2o
Common Scoter – W
Red-breasted Merganser – 2E
Oystercatcher – 1W
Turnstone – 5

Common Scoters at the Bill (AH)

Ferry Pool: At least 100 Black-tailed Godwits, 500 Lapwings and 200 Wigeon were on the field, whilst around the pool were half a dozen Snipe, c40 Shovelers and c50 Teal.

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

North Wall: In the flooded fields north of Welbourne were 12 Dunlin, nine Redshank, 23 Wigeon and 9 Great Black-backed Gulls, whilst a pair of Stonechats were still around the Welbourne horse field. 
A Kingfisher was again around the sluice gates but there was very little happening in White's Creek apart from small numbers of Brent Geese and Wigeon, with only four Tufted Ducks and a few Mallard on the Breech Pool. 
In Honer 1 field there were just 21 Curlew, five Black-tailed Godwits and three Redshank and in Honer 2 field there were 26 Curlew and seven Black-tailed Godwits., whilst Honer Reservoir held just nine Gadwall, eight Tufted Ducks, two Shoveler and 43 Coot.
This afternoon a Marsh Harrier was flying over the reed beds at the back of the horse paddocks and another was found at the end of the Wall.  

Church Norton: The Whimbrel, a Bar-tailed Godwit, four Snipe and an Avocet were among good numbers of the regular waders, including at least 300 Knot, 200 Golden Plovers and 50 Grey Plovers, whilst the harbour was full of Brent Geese coming and going and half a dozen Pintail and a pair of Red-breasted Mergansers were among the many Wigeon and Teal.
Also, a Peregrine was on its island, three or four Goldcrests and a few Long-tailed Tits were in the sheltered hedges and a dozen Skylarks were along the side of the harbour, whilst a Great Spotted Woodpecker was in the car-park and a Buzzard was sat out along Rectory Lane.

Knot (above), Golden Plover, Bar-tailed Godwit, Snipe, Curlew, Goldcrest & Buzzard at Church Norton

Two of the Robins at Church Norton are very tame indeed and can be hand fed, whilst taking advantage of conveniently placed perches!

Robin at Church Norton (SR)

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