Monday, 22 February 2021

22nd - 24th February 2021

Wednesday, 24th February: A cooler, greyer morning, after a bright start, with the breeze remaining fresh and from the south......

Selsey Bill: There were 63 Brent Geese in three flocks going east, along with nine Pintail, three Sandwich Terns and 11 Red-throated Divers, but it was generally slow-going! Full log below.
(0730-0900hrs) (S, F5)
Red-throated Diver – 11E, 1os
Little Egret – 1E
Brent Goose – 63E
Pintail – 9E
Common Scoter – 1W
Red-breasted Merganser – 6E, 3W,3os
Mediterranean Gull – 3os
Common Gull – 16E
Sandwich Tern – 3E
Razorbill – 4os

Brent Geese (above), Red-breasted Merganser & Mediterranean Gull at the Bill (AH) 

Ferry Pool:  A pair of Bullfinches were calling in Yeoman's Field this morning, whilst 78 Avocets were in the harbour off the Tramway.
The pool was quiet, though, with was just the regular wildfowl present, including c30 Shovelers, a dozen Shelducks, c20 Teal and c50 Wigeon.

Teal on the Ferry (AH)

North Wall: There was very little on the flooded fields west of Church Barton reservoir, but a lone Ruff was a bonus. It later relocated to the flooded field just SE of Honer reservoir.
It continues to be very quiet along the Wall, all of the fields are beginning to dry out but still contain few birds. A Marsh Harrier was behind the Breech Pool and at least 2000 Brent Geese were around, split between Church Farm golf course and White's Creek, increasingly congregating on the Creek as the tide rose.

West Itchenor There wasn't too much to report this morning, though a pair of Ravens dropped into Chalkdock Copse, whilst along the sides of the harbour there were 500+ Brent Geese, along with a few Grey Plovers, Curlews and Redshank, and five Red-breasted Mergansers and three Great Crested Grebes were on the water.

Raven (above), Red-breasted Mergansers, Brent Geese & Grey Plovers at West Itchenor (AH)

Itchenor Village Pond: A Red Kite went low over the nearby houses, but the woods were quiet, with just a Chiffchaff and a Goldcrest of note.

Chiffchaff (above) & Goldcrest at Itchenor Village Pond (AH) 

Medmerry: Easton Lane to the Stilt Pools - Very little about in the windy conditions. Along the banks were two Buzzards and a Kestrel, a flock of 14 Yellowhammers and six Linnets, two Stonechats, a Green and a Great Spotted Woodpecker and good numbers of singing Skylarks. The Stilt Pools held nine Common Gulls, three Lesser Black-backed Gulls and two Mediterranean Gulls but few wildfowl, with just four Canada Geese, three Wigeon, four Teal, six Tufted Ducks and two Gadwall  - and there was nothing at all in the channel opposite!

Lesser Black-backed Gulls on the Stilt pools (with Common, Herring and Black-headed Gulls) (SR)

There was a lot more going on late this afternoon, with a Great White Egret flying over the path near the car-park towards Sidlesham, and what would appear to be a different Ruff to the one on the 22nd was in the flooded arable fields to the south of Marsh Barn.
Also, a Barn Owl was out and about and 20+Yellowhammers were present.

Ruff (SH) (above) & Barn Owl (AH) at Medmerry

Tuesday, 23rd February: A bright and breezy morning, with lots of sunshine, tempered by the freshening southerly......

Selsey Bill: There appeared to be a bit of genuine easterly migration this morning, including a flock of 75 Brent Geese, plus a Pale-bellied Brent Goose, three flocks of Pintail totalling 59 birds and a flock of six Sandwich Terns that came in from way out and went off east.
There were also 22 Red-throated Divers and a Shag east and a few Razorbills were moving about, too. Full log below.
(0720-0920hrs) (SSE, F4-5) 
Red-throated Diver – 22E, 2W, 2os
Shag - 1E
Brent Goose – 76E
Pale-bellied Brent Goose – 1E
Pintail – 59E
Mallard – 4W
Common Scoter – 2E, 1W
Red-breasted Merganser – 6E, 8W, 6os
Oystercatcher – 3E
Mediterranean Gull – 3os
Common Gull – 24E, 3W
Kittiwake – 3W
Sandwich Tern – 9E, 6W
Razorbill – 6E, 2W, 6os
auk sp – 5E

Pintail (above), Red-throated Diver, Shag & Pale-bellied and Dark-bellied Brent Geese at the Bill (AH)

Ferry Pool: Five Gadwall were among the usual wildfowl this morning, including c20 Shelducks, c40 Shovelers, c40 Teal and c100 Wigeon.

Shoveler (above) & Shelducks at the Ferry (AH)

North Wall:  Late morning a Grey Wagtail and Chiffchaff were at the horse stables and a singing Skylark at the end of the Wall but there was little in between.  
However at least 1,000 Brent Geese grazed in the field at Owl Point and Whites Creek was busy with the usual Wigeon and Lapwing.

Church Norton: A Short-eared Owl flew off from the spit and over the harbour this morning.

Short-eared Owl at Church Norton (AW)

Late this afternoon a Merlin was sat out on the saltings along the west side, whilst in the harbour there were 42 Avocets, 300 Golden Plovers, 100 Lapwing and 50 Black-tailed Godwits, including some coming into summer plumage, along with 1500 Brent Geese.

Merlin at Church Norton (SH)

Medmerry: Easton Lane to the Stilt Pools - There was no sign of the Ruff this morning, with no waders on the pool, and just the usual mix of a few Gadwall, teal and wigeon present, along with 20 Brent Geese and a few Common Gulls.
A female Merlin went over, heading west, but the windy conditions kept the birds on the banks down, though there were still a couple of pairs of Stonechats, half a dozen Meadow Pipits and Stock Doves and a lot of Skylarks about.
Later, a Dartford Warbler was along the banks.

Merlin (above), Stonechat, Meadow Pipit, Skylark, Stock Dove & Brent Geese at Medmerry (AH)

Late this afternoon both Barn Owls were out, briefly, before retreating back indoors.

Barn Owls at Medmerry (AH)

Monday, 22nd February: A fairly murky morning of heavy cloud and a bit of drizzly rain, though quite mild in the light southerly breeze.....

Selsey Bill: Four Slavonian Grebes and three Great Northern Divers were offshore, along with 20 Common Scoters, whilst 17 Red-throated Divers went east and a Fulmar went west, but oddly, there were no Sandwich Terns about. Full log below.
(0730-0945hrs) (SSW, F3)
Great Northern Diver – 3os
Red-throated Diver – 17E, 2W, 2os
Slavonian Grebe – 4os
Great Crested Grebe – 2W, 10os
Fulmar – 1W
Gannet – 2E, 6W
Common Scoter – 6E, 20os
Red-breasted Merganser – 12E, 3W, 6os
Turnstone – 23
Mediterranean Gull – 2W
Common Gull – 7W
Kittiwake – 2W
Razorbill – 6W, 2os
auk sp – 5W

Red-throated Divers (above), Common Scoters & Red-breasted Mergansers at the Bill (AH)

Ferry Pool: Two Spotted Redshanks and the Kingfisher were in the channel opposite early, but not later, whilst the pool and field held 24 Shelducks, six Snipe, c50 Teal and Shovelers and c100 Wigeon.

Shelducks on the Ferry (AH)

Marsh Farm, Sidlesham: There were 20 or so Cattle Egrets to the north of Marsh Farm, whilst a Grey Wagtail was near the cattle sheds and a few Linnets and Yellowhammers were along the hedges.

Cattle Egret at Marsh Farm, Sidlesham (AW)

Church Norton: Two Red-throated Divers and six Great Crested Grebes were offshore, whilst the harbour held the regular Whimbrel, lots of Dunlin, Knot and Grey Plovers, c200 Brent Geese, c40 Shelducks and a few Wigeon and Teal.

Red-throated Diver (above), Whimbrel & Mediterranean and Black-headed Gulls at Church Norton (AH)

Dell Quay to Fishbourne Creek: There were 3 Goldeneye, 3 Red-breasted Mergansers and a couple each of Great Crested and Little Grebes in the channel from Dell Quay late morning, with a Kingfisher fishing from a moored boat. Further along, the Lavant outfall area produced three Rock Pipits, a singing Cetti's Warbler and a singing Reed Bunting, plus a Grey Wagtail.
Along the Fishbourne Creek singles of Spotted Redshank and Greenshank were present, with a dozen Pintail amongst the flocks of Wigeon and commoner waders, but gulls were the dominant feature here, with easily c.750 Common Gulls amongst the flocks of Black-headed Gulls, which also contained several Mediterranean and three Lesser Black-backed Gulls.
At Fishbourne, a singing Reed Bunting, Yellowhammer and Greenfinch were also noted.

Goldeneye at Dell Quay (OM)

Birdham: This evening a Barn Owl was hunting along the verges on Sidlesham Lane.

Medmerry: Easton Lane to the Stilt Pools - Two Buzzards and a Dartford Warbler were along the banks, whilst at an increasingly foggy Stilt Pool there were a Ruff, an Avocet, three Lesser Black-backed Gulls and 25 Ringed Plovers.

Ruff, Avocet, Lesser Black-backed Gulls & Buzzard at Medmerry (AW)

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