Saturday, 27 August 2016

Beachy Head (27 August 2016)

Saturday 27 August. I met JK in the car park at Birling at 06:10 and we covered the main sites up to the hotel garden, mostly in the company of JFC and DRC. I was a little concerned as I had to leave at 11:00 to be back in Shoreham for a family commitment but it was rather quiet and I was ready to leave by then. I saw 40 Sand Martins, 300= Swallows, a single House Martin, 3 Yellow Wagtails, 4 Whinchats, 4 Wheatears, Sedge Warbler, Lesser Whitethroat, 13 Whitethroats and 24 Willow Warblers and a Raven.  That is until we were about to return to Birling in JKs car and were stopped by a German tourist asking about parking restrictions. This delayed us to 10:39, just long enough to see an Osprey flying east towards us - the first decent bird picked up with my new specs. It flew closer then headed off south over the cliff edge. Nice. Conveniently the family do was at Shoreham Airport (none of this Brighton City Airport for me!) allowing me to look at the Adur where there was a Greenshank, 21 Ringed Plover, 5 Dunlin and 700 Herring Gulls. The latter included locally (Southwick) colour-ringed A6XY which I had seen on the Adur four times during 2010-13 but not since.
sunrise over Beachy

Osprey over Beachy

Friday 26 August. A couple of hours wandering around Mill Hill before breakfast was memorable mainly for a flock of 23 Yellow Wagtails flying around sheep in the 'trig point' field. Otherwise I saw 2 Reed, single Garden and Willow Warblers and 7 Whitethroats. Later, at low tide, Megan and I walked along the Adur seeing 25 Ringed Plover, 8 Dunlin and a North Thames colour-ringed Herring Gull. The latter too distant to read without a telescope which I had left at home. I then cycled to Worthing to collect my new specs seeing a Wheatear at Widewater on the way and 105 Ringed Plover and 9 Dunlin on the beach my return.
Small Tortoiseshell on Mill Hill
Holly Blue in our garden

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