Thursday, 31 March 2016

Little Creatures

Blodwyn Pig-Sing me a Song that I Know so Well.

Managed to crack on at work this week so had an hour or two to spare this afternoon. Decided to cycle up to the Stilt pools at Medmerry to see if the reported Little Gulls were still present and to try to glimpse my first Little Ringed Plovers of the year. All three Little Gulls were indeed still there, dip-feeding, along with at least four Little Ringed Plovers and numerous Avocets and a Black-tailed Godwit.

Little Gulls:

Little Ringed Plover:

Black-tailed Godwit:

Monday, 28 March 2016

American Wigeon


Late on Saturday night news broke that GB had found a drake American Wigeon at RSPB Pulborough Brooks from West Mead hide so I drove up there fairly early on Sunday avoiding downed trees en route. On arrival there were already a few of Sussex's finest present and fortunately the bird was there too; not surprising really as Storm Katie had hit overnight, it probably thought better of flying anywhere in that wind! This was only the second Sussex record.

Windswept video here: American Wigeon

American Wigeon with Eurasian Wigeon:

I had a quick look at Ivy Lake late afternoon and while I was there a large raptor put all the gulls and corvids to flight, I couldn't get the bins on it before it was mobbed off but my bet is Osprey. Hopefully be seen again!

A White Goose

A Selsey Bill tick for me the other day with two Ravens present. Also three Black-throated Divers past and a leucistic Brent Goose, the latter later seen at Dungeness 2 1/2 hours's 2 hrs 47 mins by car so next time choose "Fly Goose!

Raven, note white feathering above:

Brent Geese:


Leucistic Brent Goose:

Friday, 25 March 2016

Little or nothing

The Black Dog-Euthanasia

A fairly unsatisfactory day really.

Not a lot at Selsey Bill this morning despite the best efforts of all concerned; doesn't quite seem to be happening yet. Best birds I saw were a few Great Northern Divers & a few parties of Brent Geese and a lone Curlew heading east.

I then drove up to Pyrford for a go at the Little Bunting that has been in the area for a while-why the south can't get one akin to the recent Glamorgan bird escapes me-that bird sat out practically posing for pictures whilst this one and the more recent Ashdown bird (that I dipped) are specialists in elusivisity (not sure that's a word but you get my drift). So anyway, after a few hours wait and a few false starts, said bird did indeed appear for about thirty seconds on the deck by the two bushes on the right-side of the field and I fluked it for thirty seconds by the farmyard-poor views and no pictures :-( So can't help feeling a bit annoyed, maybe should have stayed longer in the hope it sat out but I suppose the best policy is to maybe wait for a more photogenic bird somewhere else.

Thursday, 24 March 2016

It's behind you!

Planetary Assault Systems-Angel Street

Fluked the first Wheatear on the Selsey Peninsula at Medmerry on Monday, walked down the beach with no luck, turned round and it was standing there looking at me! But you've got to be in it to win so I'll take that thanks very much!



Friday, 18 March 2016

Visible Migration!

Easy to choose the music today:

Led Zeppelin-The Immigrant Song

Today was a cold day...I don't usually feel it but I did today! Highlight was the viz mig at Selsey Bill with over 400 Meadow Pipits in by 10:30, a figure that rose to 625 by 12:30, also 26 Pied Wagtails and at least one Chiffchaff in and it was surprisingly entertaining to watch.

At West Fields approx. 40 Curlews.

 Had a look at Medmerry both east & west for a Wheatear but no luck while I see Sand Martins are being reported in Hampshire-I should've checked Ivy Lake then...doh!

Meadow Pipit, newly arrived & tucking in:


Brent Geese at Medmerry a few days ago:

Monday, 14 March 2016

Ivy & Medmerry

Beaumont Hannant-Psi-Onyx (Moon meets Mars)

Annoying that both Smew & Little Bunting were found today an hour or so's drive away when I'd had the previous weekend free, indeed Little Bunting present for ninth day (!) but moving on...

Very little at Ivy Lake today just a few Chiffchaffs, some singing, and a few Goldcrests, nothing of note on or over the water, whilst at Medmerry the other day:


Peregrine Falcon:


Ivy Lake, just half a dozen

Friday, 11 March 2016

Is you is or is you ain't?

Louis Jordan-Is you is or is you ain't my baby?

Interesting article by the Coopers here:

There's been a bit of chat, if you'll pardon the expression, about continental Stonechat saxicola torquata rubicola on the Sussex Birders facebook page recently which had me looking a bit harder for one over the past week. Today a good candidate I think at Medmerry but unfortunately quite distant, the pics are video grabs and not 100% conclusive; did look good through the bins though. If you go for a look it's worth noting that there are at least two other "normal" Stonechats in the area.

Large white shoulder patches:

Area of white on rump, neck patch extends towards nape:

White belly extends to lower breast:

Large flared white neck patch:


Orbital-Halcyon & On (extended version)

I've been lucky enough to see a few Owls at various undisclosed/invite-only sites over the past week and here are a few pictures, all taken with the birds' welfare given the utmost respect.

Barn Owl:

Tawny Owl:

Little Owl:

Sunday, 6 March 2016

Buzzard & Brant

At Chichester Marina, the pale Buzzard was around the fence-line as usual and the Black Brant was with the Dark-bellied Brent Geese, despite the flock being constantly harassed by dogs. A Red-breasted Merganser was in the marina itself.


Black Brant & Dark-bellied Brent Geese:

Red-breasted Merganser:

Earlier in the day David Stevenson had seen, amongst other things, a Water Pipit near Chidham Lane which reminded me that I have long wanted to check out the watercress beds in Hambrook for such a bird. Disappointingly, there weren't any but on the plus side a pair of Grey Wagtails were present. pic of the male below.

Grey Wagtail:

Saturday, 5 March 2016

Siberian (Chiffchaff) wind

A look at the west side of Medmerry this afternoon and it was pretty quiet in the biting wind, but there's always something to see (well usually I suppose!!):

Avocets on the Stilt pools:

Red-breasted Merganser at the back of the pools:

Meadow Pipit by the Rachel's marsh viewpoint:

At Lidsey, the original Siberian Chiffchaff is still there and it now appears another has joined it. Photo conditions were again far from ideal with sleet and near-darkness for most of my visit!

Siberian Chiffchaff:

Siberian Chiffchaff (different bird to the one above):

Category E

Dio-Sacred Heart

Images and a video of yesterday's Sacred Ibis at Horse Eye Level can be found here (courtesy The Pevensey Leveller blog);

Sacred Ibis

Friday, 4 March 2016

Little Owl from a disclosed location!

A very quiet day in general but the Little Owl was in the larch tree at West Dean, near Stapleash Farm

Little Owl: