Saturday, 10 November 2012

Pagham North Wall and West Dean Woods (10 November 2012)

10 November.  Martyn Kenefick and I went to Pagham to look for the Hooded Merganser that had been present during the week and John King came along for the ride, having seen it on Thursday.  We dipped although not seeing it was a disappointment quickly dismissed with recollections of  frame-filler photos of it next to Mallards!  It is impossible to be sure and this bird as some things going for it (age, time of year) but to me fails to score on wariness and location while the jury is out on length of stay if it has gone missing rather than gone.  Of those recorded in Britain one could argue that only the Hebridean bird scores a perfect 5/5.  Equally this bird seems no worse than the accepted (or recent) Kent record or many Red-breasted Geese or Blue-winged Teal.

Despite no merganser we had an enjoyable day seeing Black Brant, a late Curlew Sandpiper (a UK year tick for me!), Spotted Redshank, 7 Mediterranean Gulls, an unreadable colour-ringed Greater Black-backed Gull, Kingfisher and Raven from the north Wall.  We relocated to west Dean woods seeing a Red Kite, female Sparrowhawk feeding on a Red-legged Partridge, Little Owl, Marsh Tit and male Bullfinch.

Little Owl in its usual tree near Stapleash Farm

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