Tuesday, 31 August 2021

Shoreham and Beachy (28-31 August)

Tuesday 31 August. Megan and I took Cookie down to the Adur. On a falling tide between the A27 and Houseboats we saw 3 Shoveler, a Teal, 6 Oystercatchers, 12 Lapwings, 47 Ringed Plover, a Whimbrel, 6 Turnstones, 8 Dunlin, 13 Redshank, a Greenshank, a Wheatear and a Yellow Wagtail.

Shoveler on the River Adur, opposite the airport. Unusual here
another Shoveler on the Adur, this one by Ricardos
Wheatear on the made up riverbank by Shoreham Airport
flushed by Cookie

Monday 30 August. I made an early visit to Mill Hill where I was later joined by Megan and Cookie. In a stiff N/NE wind I saw single Great Spotted and Green Woodpeckers, 8 Swallows, 3 Willow Warblers, 9 Chiffchaffs, 5 Blackcaps, a Lesser and 11 Common Whitethroats, Spotted Flycatcher, Yellow Wagtail, Tree Pipit and 55 Goldfinches.

Sunday 29 August. I spent 10 hours at Beachy, the first six or so with Matt Eade. Very pleasant walking around and a few nice birds but nothing of real note and rather frustrating failing to find a Wryneck when several were found in Sussex. I saw 3 Swifts, 4 Sparrowhawks, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Merlin (Cow Gap), Hobby (Michel Dene), 2 Ravens (Crowlink), 40 Sand Martins, 100+ Swallows, 13 Willow and a Sedge Warbler, 2 Grasshopper Warblers (Frances Bottom), a Lesser and 16 Common Whitethroats, 8 Spotted Flycatchers, 3 Redstarts, 16 Whinchats, 17 Stonechats, 29 Wheatears, 29 Yellow Wagtails, 2 Tree Pipits and 100+ Goldfinches.

Grasshopper Warbler in Frances Bottom

nice of it to sit out even if it was a bit distant and against the light
Merlin in Cow Gap

one of three Spotted Flycatchers in Flathill Bottom

Saturday 28 August. Megan and I took Cookie to Steepdown. Walking up to Lancing Ring I flushed 2 Grasshopper Warblers, within 100m of each other, from the grassy slopes by the path into nearby scrub where both showed briefly. An unexpectedly good start that failed to continue. Walking out usual circuit I saw Sparrowhawk, 2 Buzzards, Kestrel, 2 Ravens, single Swallow and House Martin, 4 Whitethroats, a Whinchat, 4 Stonechats, a fly over Yellow Wagtail and 4 Corn Buntings.

Whinchat from Steepdown
Raven over Steepdown

UPDATE: Tuesday 24 August. News back about Mediterranean Gull 3RPA seen on the Adur on 24 August - a widely reported bird.


Friday, 27 August 2021

Mostly chats around Shoreham (23-27 August)

Friday 27 August. An early visit to Mill Hill proved successful in finding the Pied Flycatcher seen the previous evening by Graeme Charles (SOS posting much appreciated). Also seen were Sand Martin, 25 Swallows, 2 House Martins, 3 Chiffchaffs, 2 Willow and a Sedge Warbler, 10 Blackcaps, 2 Lesser and 25 Common Whitethroats , 3 Yellow Wagtails, Meadow Pipit, 3 Linnets and 40 Goldfinches. Having a free morning and the weather being very pleasant I walked up to New Erringham Farm, across to Southwick Hill, up the Monarch's Way over Thundersbarrow and along to the Beeding Hill car park and back down the road taking the footpath back to Mill Hill via Old Erringham Farm. I saw 4 Sparrowhawks, 3 Buzzards, 3 Kestrels, 30 Swallows, a House Martin, 33 Whitethroats, a Redstart, 19 Whinchats, 2 juvenile Stonechats, 29 Wheatears, 46 Yellow Wagtails, 6 Linnets, 8 Goldfinches and 2 Yellowhammers.

most of the Pied Flycatcher on Mill Hill
Lesser Whitethroat on Mill Hill
Meadow Pipit on Mill Hill
one of about 20 Yellow Wagtails at New Erringham Farm 
another of the Yellow Wagtails at New Erringham Farm 

just too slow for the Redstart
Whinchat near New Erringham Farm

Whinchat along the Monarch's Way
this Whinchat looked barely fledged

Wheatears along the Monarch's Way

 female Sparrowhawk along the Monarch's Way

Thursday 26 August. Megan and I took Cookie to Mill Hill where I saw 3 Stock Doves, 4 Buzzards, Kestrel, 5 Sand Martins, 19 Swallows, a House Martin, 4 Willow Warblers, 2 Blackcaps, a Lesser and 10 Common Whitethroats and 25 Goldfinches.

Wednesday 25 August. I took Cookie up to the Beeding Hill car park from where we walked out usual anti-clockwise 'triangle'. Highlights were my first local Yellow Wagtails this year (15 with cows along the Monarch's Way), 14 Buzzards (9 in the air together over the escarpment), 2 Redstarts, 7 Whinchats and 21 Wheatears. No flycatchers was disappointing and the only warblers seen were 2 Chiffchaffs and 5 Whitethroats. Also seen were a Peregrine (on a pylon), 3 Ravens, 9 Swallows, 7 Long-tailed Tits, a Goldcrest and a Yellowhammer.

Yellow Wagtail, one of 15 in a cow field along the Monarch's Way
Wheatear along the Monarch's Way

Whitethroat near Truleigh Hill
distant Redstart on Truleigh Hill
Buzzard over Beeding Hill

Tuesday 24 August. Megan, Cookie and I walked down the east side of the Adur on a rising tide, across to the Rec and back up the west side. We saw 7 Oystercatchers, 56 Turnstones (feeding below Ropetackle), Common Sandpiper, a Mediterranean and 20 Great Black-backed Gulls, 3 Little Egrets, 3 Sparrowhawks and a Whitethroat. Later I took Cookie to water the allotment, seeing nothing in the process.

Turnstone below Ropetackle
Cemex Go Innovation approaching Rampion
Little Egret on the Adur
adult Mediterranean Gull 3RPA on the Adur. Almost certainly ringed in Antwerp
Southern Hawker in our greenhouse. Megan let it out then came to tell me
Small Tortoiseshell on our buddleia, seen much more frequently this year than last

Monday 23 August. Megan and I took Cookie up to a rather quiet Mill Hill seeing a Kestrel, 2 Swallows, Reed Warbler, 6 Whitethroats, Whinchat, 3 Linnets and 9 Goldfinches.

Whinchat on Mill Hill