Saturday 31 May. The forecast of a light wind made me feel that a visit to Beachy might be worthwhile. It was pleasant walking around with John, Doreen and David Cooper and John King, and catching up with Pete and Mim, but other an superb views of Stonechats and a fly over Hobby it was pretty soul destroying with migrants restricted to the latter, a singing Reed Warbler (perhaps as well it wasn't rarer as it remained hidden) and a Swift. A low tide visit to the Adur produced no waders and few gulls although the latter did include a North Thames Herring Gull DY5T which I have not recorded before (my 96th local colour-ringed gull i.e. on the Adur or at Shoreham Harbour).
|much under-rated, the Stonechat is a really superb bird when seen well|
|one of about 17 seen at Birling with at least half juveniles|
|a Leopard Slug at Birling, about the only slug I've ever been 'happy' to see|
Thursday 29 May. The forecast of a nice evening made it seem a god bet for my second Woodcock survey visit to Lavington. I called in at the Adur on the way as it was low tide and was rewarded with a Turtle Dove briefly on the saltings opposite the airport before flying off E. Greatham was disappointingly quiet with just a Cuckoo heard in half an hour although several hundred Starlings were gathering to roost. At Lavington I had 9 Woodcock encounters (and 9,000 with midges) and views two Nightjars.
|Pre-roost gathering of Starlings at Greatham. About 90% appeared to be young birds.|