Sunday, 10 November 2013

Beachy and Shoreham (8-10 November)

Sunday 10th.  A bright but breezy morning at Beachy with John King and John & Doreen Cooper covering most of the area from Birling to the rim of Whitbread Hollow.  Best sightings were a Black Redstart at Birling and 3 Swallows and a House Martin feeding over France's Bottom.  More impressive though were 250 Stock Doves (including a flock of 70) and an estimated 5200 Wood Pigeons mostly heading west with some purpose.  Also Sparrowhawk, Buzzard, Peregrine, 2 Goldcrests, 80 Goldfinches and a Reed Bunting.  I then walked down the valley at Crowlink which was fairly sheltered but virtually birdless.
Stock Doves over Cow Gap
Buzzard over Belle Tout
Saturday 9th.  Out for a couple of hours before the rain came in.  At Shoreham Fort the Wheatear was showing well while a more mobile Black Redstart never stayed still long enough for me to digiscope.  A flock of c150 Greenfinches flying around the beach was the first big flock I've seen here for years - at times being disturbed by a Sparrowhawk.  Also two Peregines on Southwick Power Station chimney but very few gulls around no Rock Pipits or anything moving on the sea and the tide was too low for Purple Sandpipers.  A (the returning?) Coot was on Widewater with the Mute Swan family but the Goosander was not evident although with the rain starting my search wasn't that diligent.  A colour-ringed Greater Black-backed Gull I read as H89 was I realised on checking 68H, a Le Havre bird I'd seen in November 2011.
Wheatear hanging on at Shoreham Fort

Greater Black-backed Gull 68H (not H89).  Not its first visit to the Adur. 

Friday 8th.  An early visit to Widewater produced the juvenile female Goosander, 22 Little Grebes and 5 Teal.  Two Mediterranean Gulls were on the Adur, an adult and a second winter. Herring Gull A5HH and a Grey Wagtail outside Sussex University Sports Centre.

ducks on Widewater - ought to be able to string a few species here, Bufflhead anyone?
Goosander on Widewater
with fish shaped bit of weed
she might be tame but no rings on this leg

fully-winged too
second-winter Mediterranean Gull on the Adur
Tuesday-5-Thursday 7th.  1-2 Peregrines on Southwick Power Station chimney each morning, Grey Wagtail over Southwick Green on 6th, Herring Gull A5HH outside Sussex University Sports Centre on 5th.

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