Tuesday, 3 June 2014

not going far in late May

Sunday 1 June.  A morning low-tide visit to the Adur produced no waders and few gulls although the latter did include North Thames Herring Gull KT4T, a regular if 8 sightings since May 2011 can be described as such.  A walk around and beyond Mill Hill with Megan was equally quiet with single Buzzard, Swallow, yellowhammer and Corn Bunting with 18 Swifts over our road in the evening.  Perhaps I should have been a bit more adventurous and gone for the Short-toed Eagle in Dorset but it wasn't a new bird and I'd seen one recently in Extremadura. The Ross's Gull in Devon was more tempting but looked somewhat faded from images and might have been a bit of a disappointment.

Saturday 31 May.  The forecast of a light wind made me feel that a visit to Beachy might be worthwhile.  It was pleasant walking around with John, Doreen and David Cooper and John King, and catching up with Pete and Mim, but other an superb views of Stonechats and a fly over Hobby it was pretty soul destroying with migrants restricted to the latter, a singing Reed Warbler (perhaps as well it wasn't rarer as it remained hidden) and a Swift.  A low tide visit to the Adur produced no waders and few gulls although the latter did include a North Thames Herring Gull DY5T which I have not recorded before (my 96th local colour-ringed gull i.e. on the Adur or at Shoreham Harbour).
much under-rated, the Stonechat is a really superb bird when seen well

one of about 17 seen at Birling with at least half juveniles
a Leopard  Slug at Birling, about the only slug I've ever been 'happy' to see
Friday 30 May.  A single Peregrine on the Power Station chimney and 7 Swifts over our road.

Thursday 29 May.  The forecast of a nice evening made it seem a god bet for my second Woodcock survey visit to Lavington.  I called in at the Adur on the way as it was low tide and was rewarded with a Turtle Dove briefly on the saltings opposite the airport before flying off E. Greatham was disappointingly quiet with just a Cuckoo heard in half an hour although several hundred Starlings were gathering to roost.  At Lavington I had 9 Woodcock encounters (and 9,000 with midges) and views two Nightjars.
Pre-roost gathering of Starlings at Greatham.  About 90% appeared to be young birds.
Tuesday/Wednesday 27/28 May.  One or two Ringed Plovers on Southwick Beach while cycling to work but the bulldozers are back flattening the area again.  A single Peregrine on the Power Station chimney and a few Swifts over our road.

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