Sunday, 2 February 2014

West Sussex (2 February 2014)

Sunday 2 February.  A day in West Sussex with John King.  We started at Greatham Bridge (Marsh Harrier but no shrike) and moved on to Petworth where a male Goosander showed well on the Lower Pond.  Third time lucky for John this year, second for me.  Treecreeper, Nuthatch and 12 Redwings were nice.  We went on to my favourite West Sussex common where we were fortunate to see a female Dartford Warbler but little else.   We returned to Greatham (2 Stonechats but still no shrike) and on to Amberley where the Bewick's Swans were in three groups on the floods.  A pair with three youngsters out from the viewpoint, 6 adults mainly sleeping on a distant island (with 2 Peregrines and lots of duck) and another pair with three youngsters over towards Rackham.  We finished at the Burgh seeing at least 3 Red Kites, 27 Grey and 4 Red-legged Partridges, 3 Corn and 10 Reed Buntings and about 50 Yellowhammers, some of the males superb in the sun.

Goosander at Petworth

definitely no scales there:-(
The River Arun overflowing its banks
Amberley Wildbrooks - very flooded 
the closest family of Bewick's Swans
Red Kite at the Burgh

Saturday 1 February.  I cycled to Lancing noting 5 Red-breasted Mergansers and the Mute Swan family with 4 youngsters at Widewater on the way but nothing moving on the sea.  It was quite an effort going against the wind but great coming back.  So much so that I continued on to Shoreham Harbour but could only find 4 Purple Sandpipers tucked away out of the wind on the wooden jetty.  The tide was high at the Adur Saltings where I counted 132 Snipe.  In the afternoon Megan and attempted to I walk around Beeding Brooks but despite wearing wellies our usual route was impassible due to flooding and we stuck to the riverbank.  We saw 2 Short-eared Owls, 2 Fieldfares and 3 Reed Buntings. 

Tuesday 28 January.  Local Herring Gull A4AH at the University.

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