Wednesday, 20 January 2021

20th - 22ndJanuary 2021

Friday, 22nd January: A lovely cold but sunny winter's morning, with a light north-westerly breeze and plenty of sunshine........

Selsey BillTwo Slavonian Grebes were on the sea and another four went east this morning, but apart from a Great Northern Diver and a couple of Shags it was predictably quiet. Full log below.
(0730-0845hrs) (NW, F2)
Great Northern Diver – 1os
Red-throated Diver – 1E, 1W
diver sp – 2E
Slavonian Grebe – 4E, 2os
Great Crested Grebe – 2E, 1os
Gannet – 1E, 4W
Shag – 1E, 1os
Brent Goose – 1W
Common Scoter – 20os
Red-breasted Merganser – 10E, 2os
Oystercatcher – 1W
Turnstone - 8
Mediterranean Gull – 5E, 4W, 6os
Black-headed Gull – 183os
Common Gull – 3E, 2W
Kittiwake – 2W
Razorbill – 2W
auk sp – 6E, 55W

Shag (above) & Red-throated Diver at the Bill (AH)

Ferry PoolThere were a lot of wildfowl on the pool this morning, including a pair of Gadwall, eight Shelducks, c70 Shoveler, c100 Teal and c250 Wigeon, with ten Snipe at the front and c800 Lapwings around the fields, whilst the Spotted Redshank was again in the channel opposite.

Spotted Redshank (above), Gadwall, Snipe, Shoveler, Buzzard & Lapwings at the Ferry (AH)

Later on, the Kingfisher was showing well between the concrete blocks and the sluice, flitting back and forth, a Chiffchaff was nearby, the Spotted Redshank was along the channel and a Sparrowhawk went over, whilst a pair of Tufted Ducks were on the Long Pool and the usual Little Egret was in Red Barn Ditch.

Kingfisher in Ferry Channel (AB)

Chichester Marina and Dell Quay: Three (and possibly four) Goldeneye, including a drake, were between the Marina and Dell Quay this morning, whilst a pair of Kingfishers and a Meadow Pipit were at Dell Quay and 1000 Brent Geese were in the fields..

Kingfishers (above), Goldeneyes & Meadow Pipit at Dell Quay (GM)

North Mundham to Fisher Crossroads: Only a Redwing and a Buzzard of note today.

East Head: It was very pleasant, but very quiet, this morning, with the most notable feature being c75 Sanderlings spread along the beach. Otherwise, the water just held a couple of Red-breasted Mergansers and Great Crested Grebes and the dunes a scattering of Skylarks and a few Reed Buntings.
Snowhill Creek just held a few Black-tailed Godwits, half a dozen Avocets and plenty of Lapwings and Redshank, plus a few Wigeon and Teal, though there was a constant arrival of Brent Geese into the fields behind, totalling somewhere in excess of 1500 birds.

Sanderlings (above) & Reed Buntings, Black-tailed Godwit & Brent Geese at East Head (AH)

Medmerry: Easton Lane to the Stilt Pool - A pleasant walk to the accompaniment of singing Skylarks, finishing at the well-filled Stilt Pool. At least three Dartford Warblers were in the gorse between Easton Viewpoint and the barn along with a pair of Stonechats, whilst the surrounding fields held a flock of c300 Brent Geese, a few Stock Doves, two Green Woodpeckers, a Kestrel and a Buzzard. 
The Stilt Pool held two Snipe, a Little Grebe, 62 Lapwing, four Gadwall, a good selection of Teal, Wigeon, Shoveler and Tufted Ducks as well as nine Brent Geese that were using the pool as a bath, splashing about and rolling themselves completely over in a circle. 
The reeds held three Reed Buntings and four more Stonechats whilst the channel opposite held a Greenshank, and in a field further along were the White-fronted Goose family, all five still being present.

Dartford Warbler (above), White-fronted Geese & Little Grebe at Medmerry (SR)

There wasn't much to report this afternoon, though the White-fronted Goose family were showing well.

White-fronted Geese at Medmerry (AH)

Thursday, 21st January: A bright and breezy morning after a stormy night, with a blustery westerly and a mix of sunshine and cloud........

Selsey Bill: Two Slavonian Grebes went east with another on the sea this morning, but beyond a couple of Great Northern Divers east it was quiet, with just a few Gannets, Kittiwakes and auks moving both east and west distantly offshore. Full log below.
(0745-0900hrs) (WSW, F6-7)
Great Northern Diver – 2E
Red-throated Diver – 2E, 1W
Slavonian Grebe – 2E, 1os
Gannet – 12E, 35W
Brent Goose – 2W
Red-breasted Merganser – 6E, 3W
Turnstone 8W
Mediterranean Gull – 3os
Kittiwake – 6E, 22W
Razorbill – 3E, 5W
auk sp – 20E, 40W

Mediterranean Gull at the Bill (AH)

Ferry PoolThe pool was birdless save a handful of Snipe in the reeds, with all of the 50+ Shovelers and Teal, T00+ Wigeon and 500+ Lapwing tucked in around the edges or on the field.

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

Later, a walk around the Tramway loop was more productive... a Green Woodpecker was in Yeomans Field, then a Barn Owl shot past over Mill Pond Marsh chased by a couple of very disgruntled gulls, a Kingfisher was at the end of Red Barn Ditch and another was at the pumps in the Ferry Channel.
Also, the Spotted Redshank was at the top of the Ferry Channel, along with over a dozen Common Redshanks, then 3-400 Lapwing settled around the Ferry Pool and a total of 34 Shoveler were on the pool itself, with a Buzzard gliding very low to the ground from fence post to fence post.
The Spotted Redshank was still in Ferry channel late in the afternoon.

Spotted Redshank in Ferry Channel (AW)

North Wall: In excess of 1,000 Brent Geese were in Whites Creek and the surrounding mud at first light before groups of a hundred or two flew north, generally in the direction of Marsh Farm. 
About 400 Lapwing, 200 Black-tailed Godwits lined Whites Creek and there were also good numbers scattered about of Wigeon, Teal and Dunlin as well as an occasional Grey Plover and perhaps 20 Shelduck.

Later, on the flooded fields north of Welbourne, were 510 Brent Geese, 24 Shelduck, five Wigeon and five Redshank, with a Grey Wagtail around the stables at Welbourne. In the field behind the Breech Pool were 1300 Brent Geese, 78 Black-tailed Godwits and18 Curlew. 
In Honer fields were 66 Black-tailed Godwits and seven Curlew but there was little else. It was still quiet along the East side with just a few Skylarks and Meadow Pipits. 

Skylark on the East side and Grey Wagtail around Welbourne on the North Wall (JDW)

N. Mundham to Fisher: Today's walk produced 20 Pied Wagtails, two Mistle Thrushes, four Song Thrushes and an Egyptian Goose in the fields.

Church Norton: There were again lots of waders on the mud, including three Bar-tailed Godwits, 300 Knot and many Dunlin and Grey Plovers, plus a handful of Snipe in the creek by the horse field, but wildfowl were scarce, beyond half a dozen Pintail, a few Wigeon and c300 Brent Geese, and there really wasn't much else of anything!.

Bar-tailed Godwit (above), Pintail, Snipe & Knot at Church Norton (AH)

Wednesday, 20th January: A very grey and blustery morning, with a near gale-force southerly pushing through belts of drizzly rain........

Selsey BillThere was plenty of westward movement again this morning, including two Fulmars, a group of seven Sandwich Terns, 300 Gannets, 85 Kittiwakes and 400 auks, whilst a flock of 20 Brent Geese went east. Full log below.
(0800-0930hrs) (SSW, F7) 
Red-throated Diver – 2W, 1os
Great Crested Grebe – 2W
Fulmar – 2W
Gannet – 300W
Brent Goose – 20E
Red-breasted Merganser – 1E, 2W
Turnstone – 4W
Mediterranean Gull – 1W
Kittiwake – 85W
Sandwich Tern – 7W
Razorbill – 20W 
auk sp – 400W

Fulmar (above), Sandwich Terns, Kittiwake & Gannets at the Bill (AH)

Ferry PoolThe Kingfisher, the Spotted Redshank and two Gadwall were in the channel opposite this morning, whilst half a dozen Snipe were in the reeds and the pool held a Mediterranean Gull, six Shelducks, c200 Wigeon and 50 or so Teal and Shovelers.

Kingfisher (above), Spotted Redshank & Wigeon around the Ferry (AH)

North Wall: On the flooded fields north of Welbourne were 380 Brent Geese, 190 Wigeon, 106 Great Black-backed Gulls, ten Shelduck and five Mute Swans, whilst a Grey Wagtail was around the stables, but White's Creek was like a wind tunnel and there were only a few Lapwing to be seen. 
A male Marsh Harrier was briefly over the reeds behind the Breech Pool, but like the two previous days it was pretty dismal along the Wall, with little to see. On Monday and Tuesday there had been small numbers of Curlew and Black-tailed Godwits in the various Honer fields, but today they were empty.
Honer 1 remains impassable at present, and the western end of the Wall is very muddy, with deep puddles and VERY slippery.

Church Norton: There were a lot of waders out on the mud this morning, including at least 400 Knot and 700 Dunlin, plus at least 50 Grey Plovers, along with the Whimbrel and a lone Black-tailed Godwit, whilst  200 Golden Plovers and 500 Lapwing came up from further down the harbour and 18 Snipe were in the creek by the horse field.
Wildfowl were less conspicuous, but included half a dozen Pintail, 20 Shelducks, c50 Teal and Wigeon and 200 Brent Geese, but beyond a first-winter Mediterranean Gull and the two tame Robins there wasn't much else about.

Pintail (above), Snipe, Whimbrel & Black-tailed Godwit at Church Norton (AH)

Marsh & Chalder Farms: A brisk circular walk in the rain produced c200 Brent Geese overhead, 17 Cattle Egrets, three Little Egrets, a Jay, a Green Woodpecker, three Mediterranean Gulls and c300 Black-headed Gulls.

Cattle Egret in the rain at Marsh Farm (JDW)

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