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Pagham Birder: The Blog

A regular account of the birds seen mainly on and around Pagham Spit, the Lagoon and the North Wall plus other birding exploits from time to time.
Any news of interest regarding the ongoing erosion problems on Pagham Beach will, from now on, be shown on my other blog together with general beach photos.. Click on the link... Pagham Beach Blog on this page.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

A superb morning...cold and frosty.

A visit to the North Wall and the first bird up was this resplendent Kingfisher on her usual post.


The ridiculously tame Robin was hopping around the salthouse within inches of me...the other day it   actually perched on the camera!

A Jenny Wren was foraging amongst the reed stems.

A small flock of Brents flew overhead including one, unusually,  with 2 sets of wings!
On the Beeech Pool the usual Teal, Coots etc but also a Spotted Redshank
Not one, but....
two!
Little else of note around so have just included this Wood Pigeon in a rather unusual pose

Monday, January 19, 2015

Nothing much!

Whilst waiting for the reported Scaup to turn up on Pagham Lagoon I passed the time 'playing'!
A sleeping Med?
Competition time! What is it?
Little Grebe


...going,

going,
going,
gone!

Competition answer....female Goldeneye
The Scaup didn't turn up!

 Just shows how desparate you can get sometimes!

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

After a very damp start to the day the sun came out and I made my way to the North Wall. As I passed the Lagoon there were at least two pairs of Pochard, numerous Wigeon and Tufted Ducks and a couple of distant Goldeneye. The ever present Little Grebes were fishing near the reeds....

Dabchick
There were plenty of Lapwings, Redshank, Shelduck and a single Spotted Redshank in Whites Creek but nothing unusual. Wigeon were feeding near the sliuce gate...
This slendid drake Wigeon  showed well in the sunshine

As I reached the Salthouse a Kingfisher zoomed past but little else of interest until I met Jim Western
who led me  to a Little Owl  viewable across the field by the parked cars...too distant for a decent shot...a pity as it was showing really well in the sunshine...
Little Owl....(record shot!)
The resident Robin was singing its heart out as we watched!
In the afternoon, as I had to go to Worthing, I decided to nip into to Widewater to see if the Goosander and the Scoter were still present...neither showed up!
I did however meet Arthur for the first time (Artisanart on Flickr) and together we enjoyed a pair of Red Breasted Mergansers in 'battle' mood which gave us both an opportunity for some action shots!











Real agression!


Nice Mergansers ....shame about missing the Goosander!

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Widewater visit.

After  a very wet morning the sun appeared and I felt the need to go in search of the Dusky Warbler to at least get a record shot of the bird. Alas....it was not to be! Several birders were wandering about pretty aimlessly and it had neither been seen nor heard.
Next stop Widewater, Lancing to try for the reported Scoter which had been around for a few days. On arrival I met three photographers all with long faces...never a good sign. The only birds around were a Redshank, Little Egret and a few Little Grebes. I had just about given up when I met a couple of birdwatchers who were obviously locals who told me it was at the far end and I'd probably missed it!
I hurried back to the eastern end of Widewater and there it was hiding behind the first island....too distant for a decent photo but sufficient for a few record shots.
 Time was not on my side and I had to depart all too soon but as I was driving away with all gear packed away two chaps with cameras were running! I caught them up and sure enough the Scoter was close to the bank. Leaping out the car, extracting the equipment from the case inside the boot and trying to hand hold a 700mm lens only to see the bird now making its way to the other side was not an ideal conclusion to my venture but nevertheless a few shots herewith!!
The female Scoter at Widewater


...and a couple of shots of a pair of Red Breasted Mergansers



I think the reflection of the buildings in the water gives an interesting effect...nice birds, too!

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Recent failures!

Not something I really want to record on my blog but.....
my first two outings this year have not been entirely satisfactory.
Last week a three and a half hour wait in a muddy car park in Jevington, East Sussex waiting for the long stay Rough Legged Buzzard to take flight resulted in a distant shot of the bird perched in a tree almost impossible to see without bins...Here is a 700mm shot!!!

...and cropped heavily!!!
Today was my first opportunity to try for the Dusky Warbler at the Chichester G.P. site.
Yes we saw it...for a couple of nano seconds: that was it! 


A Robin kept fooling us ...the only photo of any bird today.
The joys of birding!

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

An early wander in winter sunshine.

Just another day, cold and very frosty, windless! A great morning to be out and about around Pagham Harbour.
The light was just perfect for a little early morning photography so I set off in the hope of finding something unusual!
Alas, nothing rare or paticularly different to the normal run of things but there is always the opportunity of trying to improve on previous photos of  the more common birds...especially in good lighting. So whats wrong with Oystercatchers? If they were a rarity we would be madly twitching....just look at that long orange bill and what fabulous legs. Sometimes  referred to as the Pied Piper of the mud flats....








 Out on the shingle bar a Cormorant drying its wings...

Nearby a Little Egret...how striking is that!  Birders would be jumping up and down if it was 20 years ago!
Turnstone on a sand bank...all fluffed up!
Just another day? Another great day....enjoy!!!

Monday, December 29, 2014

Church Norton visit.

A quick visit 'to the otherside' to see what was about....

Redshanks are usually quite flighty but by approaching cautiously this particular bird didn't seem too concerned by my presence...a common wader but nevertheless very nice to be able to watch close up.





 

The leucistic Curlew...a long way out on the mudflats but easily picked out  in the bright sunlight.
Grey plovers searching the mud for worms.
Teal dabbling in the winter sunshine....  a
very pleasant hour or so.