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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, December 31, 2020

New Years Eve

 As we are now in Tier 4 there appears to be more people  than ever wandering about Pagham Spit. It was a very cold and sunny day and birds on the spit were very limited.

I had an unsuccessful look for the reported White Fronted Geese in the morning but a second visit at 3.15 located five on Peregrine island....a very distant shot below.


The now regular Kingfisher showed well in the bright afternoon sun.


...always a pleasure to see!

Happy New Year to you all.

Friday, December 25, 2020

Christmas day.

 A very frosty morning and a very brief visit to the harbour mouth. All the usual species about, with a male Peregrine on New Island and my first Goldeneye of the winter right out in the middle of the harbour constantly diving and spending most of the time under water. Regretfully no photos today....got to cook a turkey bird!

Happy Christmas to all my blogger friends!

Thursday, December 17, 2020

A new bird on "peregrine island".



 I've  never seen a White Fronted Goose on 'peregrine' island before but for the past week, one has been seen here, although distantly, from the Pagham spit. One observer noted two birds but not I. Small skeins have been noted in the surrounding area.

The other distant bird has been a Richards Pipit, but on the day I saw it, it was very distant! However a new tick for me!


Conversely, Stonechats are a lot easier to photograph!



Friday, November 27, 2020

Another Week almost over.

An interesting week for sightings around Pagham harbour but I have missed out on almost all of the excitement. Reports of interesting species seen in and around  the harbour have included a Scoter, Slavonian Grebe, Eider, Gt Northern Diver, Glossy Ibis and Snow Buntings plus, plus.

My only success has been a Merlin on New Island...a long distance photo...



..and a  pair of Peregrines






...and a Rock Pipit

There was a brief encounter with a Water Rail at the south east corner of the Lagoon and an even briefer encounter with a Black Redstart on our neighbours roof top  this afternoon but alas no photo let alone a poor distant shot!

Hopefully I will have more time on my hands in December but the days are short and there are always priorities of a domestic nature which 'have to be done'!

p.s. It is unusual to see two seals in the harbour  ...one is very often seen entering or leaving the harbour or basking on a mud  bank but two seen this week is exceptional.

Saturday, November 7, 2020

A few surprises on Pagham Spit

 Another very sunny morning and the first surprise was the sight of 2 House Martins flying east over the New Lagoon...very late!

Second surprise was the appearance for the second year of this unusual white headed Brent Goose.


A Kingfisher was fishing off the restraining wall....too quick for a photo.

The third surprise was a bird not often seen on the spit,,,,a Goldcrest...quite obliging until disturbed by a dog walker.




The usual pair of Stonechats were present, here's the female...


 Even a short morning stroll on the spit can be rewarding .

Friday, November 6, 2020

A change in the weather...

 Following the rain and wind of the last week it was a real joy to get out into the sunshine and calm weather during the past few days and enjoy Pagham in the autumn!

This photo shows where the sea has broken into the Little Lagoon which has now become a tidal inlet

The seal was present the previous week in the harbour entrance at this point and at one time I thought it might swim into the lagoon but it headed on towards the harbour.


Little Grebes continue to enjoy the Little Lagoon although this morning there were twelve on the main Lagoon along with six Great Crested Grebes.









There has been a flock of at least 25 Linnets on the Spit on a regular basis...here's a few in a thorn bush. 








The North Wall is a good spot both in the early morning and late afternoon...for a sunset!

This Marsh Harrier was present yesterday afternoon and although distant, a pleasure to see, quartering the reed bed.





A Wigeon in late afternoon sun by the sluice gate.


 


Redshank along Whites Creek.



A Curlew silhouetted in late afternoon


This morning the light had changed and the harbour was just full of birds!

This Grey Plover was watching as I approached the sluice gate but very soon took flight.

A fine pair of Curlew eyed me as I wandered along the North Wall.


...and likewise, a Reed Bunting  by the Breech Pool.




A Grey Wagtail was present although a little distant













Then suddenly a huge flock of Lapwing arose from the mud flats together with approximately 250 Golden Plover....obviously disturbed by something.







These are amazing birds to watch as they twist and turn in the sunlight and soon they landed on a very  distant mud bank.


As I returned home along Whites Creek I was able to get a little closer and make our their wonderful golden plumage





Duck numbers have increased dramatically with Wigeon outnumbering everything else so it's good to see a few Pintail!



Sunset over the harbour with the Isle of Wight in the far distance.

Where else would you want to be during the second lockdown!

Tuesday, October 20, 2020


It's  been interesting to watch the arrival of the brent Geese during the last couple of weeks or so, some flying straight past the harbour entrance and others making straight for it over the beach bungalows. On one occasion a flock of about 20 flew past but then suddenly turned around and made their way back before turning into the harbour. A number of family groups have three juveniles but  this family had four youngsters...a sign of a good breeding season maybe?

Duck numbers have been increasing with Wigeon outnumbering the Teal and Pintail by far.



The Swan family have been much appreciated by holiday makers but I was pleased to obtain a photograph of  all seven in flight this week..not always easy.


The recent erosion and flooding of the Little Lagoon area has created a new interest and as the tide sweeps in it is obviously bringing  small  fish which attracts herons, egrets and cormorants...



Cormorants are more disturbed easily by dog walkers.

This week has seen an influx of Stonechats and Chiffchaffs...

Stonechat (m)

Stonechat (f)

Chiffchaff...in the bushes besides Whites Creek

..and on Pagham spit.

Meadow Pipits have been foraging along the tideline

...or seem quite happy in the 'old' carpark


Coots have increased their numbers on the Lagoon


... alongside the ever present moorhens




Nothing dramatic or noteworthy but the past few days have been very warm and sunny.