Monday, 31 December 2012

late December bits (27-31 December 2012)

27 December.  River Adur, Shoreham Fort, Widewater and River Adur circuit.  Cycled round in a couple of hours.  Weather better than forecast but tide still not helpful as only low after dark so no sandbars in the Adur.  Seven Purple Sandpipers on the wooden pier, 7 Red-breasted mergansers on Widewater, 7 Sanderling on the beach there, 2 Rock pipits on Shoreham Airfield and one at the Fort.  Also the Coot and the Mute Swan family still on Widewater with an interloping swan chased off and a Sparowhawk over Shoreham.

28 December.  Weather too bad to venture out when little prospect of seeing anything.

29 December.  Walk around Rackham with Megan and Vanessa.  Amberley Wildbrooks were very flooded with lots of distant wildfowl.  Very windy with few small birds in evidence, the best being 2 Treecreepers and a Nuthatch at Rackham and a Mistle thrush and 30 Redwings in Parham Park.

flooded Amberley Wildbrooks from Rackham

30 December.  Day in London with family.

31 December.   River Adur, Shoreham Fort and Widewater.  Chickened out and drove today.  Lowish tide on the Adur first thing, but it was always coming in.  A colour-ringed Greater Black-backed Gull was on the Adur but it flew off west before I could read more than the first character (a J so presumably Norwegian).  More success on the shore by the Sailing Club where North Thames Herring Gull NM8T was present, along with 400 other gulls until a dog walker put them up.  I counted at least 10 Purple Sandpipers near the fort but didn't wait for the high tide to see if all 12 were present.  Also at the Fort were 3 Rock Pipits, one a well marked bird that I could imagine was a littoralis, but maybe many are at this time of year?  A few birds were moving distantly with 81 Gannets, 17 Kittiwakes, 5 Fulmars and a Red-breasted Merganser flying west and 18 Brent Geese (4+14) east.  The Mute Swan family (2 adults and 5 youngsters) were on Widewater along with 11 Red-breasted Mergansers (2 pairs, a male with 2 females and 4 females/young).

Herring Gull NM8T, ringed as a 2CY at Pitsea (Essex) on  27 March 2010 and seen on the Adur on 17 September 2011 

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