Sunday, 28 October 2012

The Burgh & Beachy (27-28 October 2012)

26 October: 2 Peregrines at 07:15am on Southwick Power Station chimney in the early morning gloom.  The clocks going back will make cycling to work more pleasant, for a while, but I'd rather have the daylight at the end of the day.  It was much colder on the way home and I felt quite sorry for the 5 Swallows hawking insects over Brighton beach at 5.15pm (but at least it was still light then).  A full set of previously seen colour-ringed Herring Gulls were on the grass at the University of Sussex entrance (A4AH, A4AJ and A5HH).

27 October:  Megan and I spent 2-3 hours quickly walking a circuit of the windswept Burgh, starting from Canada Barn to avoid the Shoreham/lancing roadworks.  It was too cold to hang about but a ring-tailed Hen Harrier flying up the main valley was a very pleasant surprise.  We also saw 3 Buzzards, an unidentified falcon, 12 Grey Partridges, 40+ Sky Larks, a Stonechat and 3 Reed and a Corn Bunting.  I visited the Adur for low tide after a bit of digging in the allotment.  There were no colour-ringed gulls although a Black-headed had a metal ring on.  It was too far away to read and so an opportunity lost by the ringer ...  Six Grey Plovers were my first of the season while 52 Ringed Plover was a reasonable count.

28 October:  Martyn Kenefick and I went over to Birling where we met up with David and John Cooper, Brenda Kay and John King.  Birds seen included Peregrine chasing a Raven, 49 Stock Doves, c1400 Wood Pigeons (but John Marchant had seen 14,000 going out over Holywell and Cow Gap), 12 Swallows, 11 House Martins, 3 Stonechats2 Redwing, 5 Mistle Thrushes, Chiffchaff, Brambling, 6 siskin, 11 Redpoll and a Bullfinch.  Rather disappointing as the conditions had looked quite promising.

metal ringed Black-headed Gull on the Adur

too distant to make out its characters

friendly farmer helpfully shouting directions to one of two birders in a rough field, at least that was my interpretation - "[its] come out of the field ...   by the fence" - never did discover what he'd seen

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