Monday 29 May 2023

29th - 31st May 2023

Wednesday, 31st May: Yet another morning of unbroken sun, kept cool by the fresh and blustery north-easterly breeze......

Selsey Bill: It was another surprisingly busy morning, with three Black Terns offshore and 300+ 'Commic' Terns, including 28 Arctic Terns, going east, along with a few Common Scoters, Sanderlings and Mediterranean Gulls. Full log below. (PB/PM/SR/AH)
(0600-0930hrs) (NE, F5)
Fulmar - 1W
Gannet - 49E, 14W, 8os
Mallard - 1E
Common Scoter - 43E
Ringed Plover - 23E
Sanderling - 11E
Mediterranean Gull - 46E, 25os
Kittiwake - 17E, 2W
Sandwich Tern - 16E, 50os
Arctic Tern - 28E
Common Tern - 134E
'Commic' Tern - 195E, 30os
Black Tern - 3os
auk sp - 2W
Swift - 3N
House Martin - 10
Grey Seal - 1os

This evening there was a dramatic and huge, if distant, gathering of terns and gulls around the Mile Basket, with many eventually drifting off east, and including over 30 Black and Little Terns and over 250 'Commic' Terns, with a brief view of a seemingly small, thin-winged skua that could not be re-found. Full log below. (SH/AH)
Gannet - 4E, 3W
Grey Plover - 1E
Sanderling - 8E
skua sp - 1E
Mediterranean Gull - 71E, 40os
Kittiwake - 4W
Sandwich Tern - 27E, 40os
Common Tern - 17E
'Commic' Tern - 207E, 39os
Little Tern - 38os
Black Tern - 23E, 11os
auk sp - 2W

Mediterranean Gull at the Bill (AH)

Ferry Pool: The Ruff was present early on, but not later, though the summer-plumaged Knot was still around, along with three Greenshanks, 16 Avocets, 11 Redshanks and a good count of 161 Black-tailed Godwits, plus the usual half a dozen Mallards and c20 Shelducks, and a Little Egret and a Reed Bunting. (PB/PM/AH)

Knot (above), Greenshank & Black-tailed Godwits at the Ferry (AH)

Church Norton: There was a good selection of waders on the mud this evening, dominated by c180 Ringed Plovers, with c40 Sanderlings, six Grey Plovers, three Curlews, a Knot and a Turnstone also present, along with the family of Shelducks. (AH)

Sanderlings (above), Ringed Plover, Grey Plovers, Knot and Turnstone & Shelduck family at Church Norton (AH)

Medmerry: Easton Lane to the Stilt Pools - The Little Stint  was again on the Stilt Pools this morning, along with a Greenshank, three Dunlin, a Little Ringed Plover, a Lapwing, three Black-tailed Godwits, 34 Avocets, a Common Tern, the drake Shoveler, the pair of Egyptian Geese and six goslings and two families of Canada Geese.
A dozen Swifts and a few Swallows were over the pool, with another 30 Swifts over the reservoirs, but the banks were fairly slow in the breeze, though half a dozen Whitethroats and Yellowhammers were about, along with a couple of juvenile Stonechats and their parents, a couple of Reed Buntings and Reed Warblers and 20+ Linnets and Skylarks, whilst two Cattle egrets were on the reserve and two Buzzards went over. (AH/PB/PM)

Stonechat (above), Whitethroat, Yellowhammer, Swallow, Little Ringed Plover, Shoveler and Avocet & Egyptian Goose family at Medmerry (AH)

Tuesday, 30th May: The prolonged spell of bright and breezy weather continues, with another morning of a blustery north-easterly tempering the uninterrupted sunshine......

Editorial: Readers will be aware of the annual Pom King challenge undertaken by a hardy few observers annually. Well, the challenge closes after tomorrow when the new Pom King will be announced. 
No spoilers for those currently unaware of the situation, but let's just say it's been a very unusual competition this spring.....

Selsey Bill: A surprisingly interesting morning, with five Black Terns and over 100 'Commic' Terns moving east, along with an unexpected (for the conditions) group of three Manx Shearwater also going east and the first Mistle Thrush of the year here, on the Oval Field. Full log below. (SR/AH/IP/P&LH/OM/RHa)
(0650-1220hrs) (NE, F4-5)
Great Crested Grebe - 2E
Manx Shearwater - 3E
Fulmar - 1W
Gannet - 30E, 16W
Common Scoter - 4E
Oystercatcher - 1E
Sanderling - 6E
Mediterranean Gull - 70E, 9W
Sandwich Tern - 38E, 40os
'Commic' Tern - 120E
Little Tern - 3os
Black Tern - 5E
Swallow - 1
House Martin - 10
Mistle Thrush - 1

Late this afternoon, four Black Terns were among the flock feeding offshore, whilst a dark-phase Arctic Skua, two Arctic Terns and 106 Mediterranean Gulls went east. Full log below. (SH/AW)
Gannet - 10-E, 4W, 3os
Arctic Skua - 1E
Mediterranean Gull - 106E
Kittiwake - 2W
Sandwich Tern - 19E, 32os
Arctic Tern - 2E
Common Tern - 10E, 4os
'Commic' Tern - 14E
Black Tern - 4os

Later, from Hillfield Road,  the Black Terns were still offshore and 26 Common Terns and a close flock of 11 Arctic Terns went east. (BI)

Sanderlings (above), Sandwich Terns, Mediterranean Gull, Mistle Thrush & House Martin at the Bill (AH)

Black Terns and 'Commic' Terns passing the Bill...although some of the latter would clearly appear to be Common, several others were less obvious and possibly Arctics, although such identification issues were not helped by the conditions and glaring sunshine. (OM)

Ferry Pool: The Ruff and the summer-plumaged Knot were both on the pool again, among c150 Black-tailed Godwits, and there were also five Greenshanks, seven Redshank, seven Avocets and c25 Shelducks present, plus two Cattle Egrets among the cows. (AH/P&LH/OM)

Knot and Ruff (above), Ruff, Avocet, Black-tailed Godwits, Knot and Shelduck, Knot, Avocet, Black-tailed Godwits, Greenshank & Greenshank and Redshank at the Ferry (AH)

Church Norton: With the wind ripping across the harbour, it was predictably dead, with just a dozen or so Ringed Plovers and Dunlin, a handful of Curlews and Oystercatchers and c30 Shelducks on the mud and a lone Swallow the only passerine seen. (AH)

East Side: There were 20 Mute Swans along White’s Creek, and two Sandwich Terns were with a few Black-headed Gulls, Herring Gulls, Great Black-backed Gulls and Mediterranean Gulls on the mud, with five Sanderlings and a Ringed Plover further out.
Along the inner footpath there was a Chiffchaff, along with a few Whitethroats and a couple of singing Wrens, and a Collared Dove was on the path. (LP)

Sanderlings and Ringed Plover, Mediterranean Gull, Wren & Collared Dove along the East Side (LP)

North Wall: Both Marsh Harriers were up over the reeds, and a Cuckoo was calling from further back, whilst the Swallows were still around the stables and six Swifts were overhead.
A Cetti’s Warbler was by the sluice and the Great Crested Grebe pair were displaying on the Breech Pool, whilst at Halsey’s Farm there were a few Reed Warblers and Whitethroats in the bushes, a Pied Wagtail by the rife and a Jay, a Kestrel and a Buzzard were around the fields. (LP)

Reed Warbler (above), Pied Wagtail & Great Crested Grebes at the North Wall (LP)

Chichester Canal: At least one Norfolk Hawker was about this morning, along with several Common Darters and emperors. (AW)

Norfolk Hawker at Chichester Canal (AW)

Chichester GPs: Ivy Lake complex - A quick look at lunchtime found a pair of Egyptian Geese with five young goslings by East Trout Lake and at least 80 Greylag Geese, including up to a dozen well-grown juveniles, on Copse Lake, but a handful of Pochards, Tufted Ducks and Great Crested Grebes, and lots of Coots, was otherwise about it, with just a single Cetti's Warbler head and two Swallows over. (AH)

Egyptian Geese (above) & Greylag Geese at Chichester GPs (AH)

Medmerry: Easton Lane to the Stilt Pools - A Little Stint  was on the Stilt Pools today, along with a Dunlin, a Greenshank, six Black-tailed Godwits, six Ringed Plovers, 37 Avocets, two Lapwings, a Shoveler,a pair of Egyptian Geese with six goslings and ten Mediterranean Gulls.
Two Sand Martins and six Swallows went over, whilst singles of  Whitethroat, a Reed, a Sedge and a Cetti's Warbler were heard, and two Stonechats, two Reed Buntings, six Yellowhammers and 15 Linnets were along the banks. (P&LH)

Medmerry: Porthole Farm - A male Marsh Harrier was over the fields this evening, whilst at least 75 Swifts and c50 Swallows and House Martins were around the settling tanks and eight Mediterranean Gulls went over east. (AH)

Swifts (above), Marsh Harrier & Swallow at Medmerry (AH)

Bank Holiday Monday, 29th May: An even windier morning, with the north-easterly freshening up through the morning, though quite warm in the unbroken sunshine.....

Selsey Bill: A total of 48 Common Terns went east his morning, with 45 Common Scoters and four Sanderling likewise, and there were more Mediterranean Gulls about than of late. Full log below. (SH/BI/SR/AH/IP)
(0530-0830hrs) (ENE, F5)
Fulmar - 1W
Gannet - 18E, 17W
Common Scoter - 45E
Ringed Plover - 1W
Sanderling - 4E, 2 present
Mediterranean Gull - 17E, 13W, 1os
Black-headed Gull - 70E
Common Gull - 1E
Kittiwake - 17E, 2W
Sandwich Tern - 40os
Common Tern - 48E, 1os
Swallow - 2
House Martin - 2

Fulmar (above), Sanderling, Mediterranean Gull & Sandwich Tern at the Bill (AH)

Ferry Pool: A Ruff, a summer-plumaged Knot, a Common Sandpiper, a Dunlin, a Lapwing and two Redshanks were on the pool this morning, along with the usual five Avocets, c150 Black-tailed Godwits and 25 Shelducks.
Also, a Stonechat looked like it was holding territory in the fields, three Cattle Egrets were among the cows and four Swallows went over. (AH/TG-P/BI/IP/RHa/BFF et al)

Ruff and Shelducks (above), Ruff and Black-tailed Godwits, Knot and Black-tailed Godwits, Common Sandpiper & Black-tailed Godwit at the Ferry (AH)

Park Farm, Selsey: A Lesser Black-backed Gull was sat in the field nearest the farm with the Herring Gulls, a Kestrel was mobbing a Buzzard and a Sparrowhawk went over. (IP)

Church Norton: The most unusual sighting this morning was of four Pintail flying east along the shoreline, but the harbour was bare, with just a single Grey Plover, a few Oystercatchers, five Gadwall, two Sandwich Terns and two Mediterranean Gulls noted.
Unsurprisingly small birds were almost completely absent in the strong north-easterly wind, though the Cuckoo was again calling from the back of Bluebell Wood. (IP)

Marsh and Chalder Farms, Sidlesham: Only the one Cattle Egret was seen here today, along with two Chiffchaffs, three Linnets, four Whitethroats, six Skylarks, a Reed Warbler, three Yellowhammers, a Kestrel and two Moorhen families.
In the churchyard there were a noisy Mistle Thrush, a Jay and a Banded Demoiselle dragonfly. (SR)
Also, there was a Whinchat along Church Farm Lane this afternoon. (HR/DM)

Jay in Sidlesham churchyard (SR)

North Wall: There were plenty of Cattle and Little Egret in and out of Owl Copse, with two young Cattle Egrets on show.
Also, the female Marsh Harrier dropped in to the reed beds briefly, a Lesser Whitethroat was in the bushes and c40 Swifts, a Buzzard and two Kestrels were overhead. (S&SaH)

juvenile Cattle Egrets at the north Wall (SH)

Medmerry: Easton Lane to the Stilt Pool - There were 37 Avocets on the Stilt Pool this morning, along with a Little Ringed Plover, three Ringed Plovers, two Dunlin, a Redshank, a drake Shoveler, four Pied Wagtails, half a dozen Swallows and four Common Terns, with a couple of Cattle Egrets in the vicinity, too.
The banks were quite quiet in the wind, but a Hobby went over, heading towards Selsey, and there were still c20 Whitethroats, a dozen Yellowhammers, two Reed Buntings, five Reed Warblers, four Cetti's Warblers and plenty of Linnets and Skylarks about, with three Swifts, c20 Swallows, two Kestrels and a Buzzard over, and a pair of Red-legged Partridges were in the arable fields. (S&SaH/AH/BFF/TS et al)

Whitethroat (above), Swallow, Linnet, Little Ringed Plover and Avocet & Avocets at Medmerry (AH)

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