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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.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

High Spring Tides

High spring tides are due this weekend and with high winds forecast for Sunday we will be watching our beachfronts with a certain amount of trepidation!
The Lagoon held a pair each of Goldeneye and Red Breasted Mergansers this morning and the Mediterranean Gulls are changing into summer plumage and have become quite noisy with their unmistakable 'cowll' calls.
Several decent sized flocks of Knot were wheeling above the shingle bank and in total must be 1000-1200 strong.
Ringed Plovers were conducting display flights along the beach...clear evidence that Spring is well on the way!
We paid a visit to the New Forest today and noticed Rooks on nests, Magpies building nests, Nuthatches calling and numerous Buzzards...several groups of 5 and 6 birds wheeling overhead.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010


It is unusual to see 2 seals together but there were two of them playing in the harbour mouth at low tide early this afternoon.
Still big flocks of Brent Geese, Knot, Godwits and Golden Plover; Wigeon and Teal being the predominant ducks.
After the very heavy rain of yesterday and early this morning it was refreshing to see the sun for a few hours...alas, the forecast is not good as apparently more rain is on its way!

Friday, February 19, 2010

A quick visit to the North Wall

Halsey Farm in Stormy Light

Due to various domestic issues birding has been restricted somewhat, so a quick visit to the North Wall was most welcome! The Brent flock was in the distance flying between fields but the Wigeon were grazing in the usual field along with a few Pintail and Gadwall. A few Curlew were present near the sluice gate . The clouds soon gathered and it was not long before I beat a hasty retreat and got back home just before the heavens opened!

Drake Wigeon near the Salthouse

Curlew watching overflying Wigeon

Click on image to see fullsize.If any blog watchers would find this bird list of interest on a regular basis please let me know and I will post it up at the end of my blog on a regular basis. If you are not already aware the list is posted by local birder Tim in the Salthouse on the North wall.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

The Knot Flock

The weather today is cold and wet with little possibility of any serious birding. The only compensation was watching the manoeuvres of the winter flock of Knot from our window as they gathered at high tide on the shingle spit...quite spectacular.

Friday, February 12, 2010

A visit to Arundel WWT

Yesterday morning as I was returning from a trip to Worthing I decided to drop into Arundel Wildfowl Trust. A pair of Grey wagtails were inside one of the enclosures and I managed to secure one image of the female through the netting.I will return another day for the male who was less obliging!

Moorhens were everywhere and very tame so a close up was easy!

Common Scoter

Long Tailed Duck

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Another cold morning.

With the temperature hovering just above freezing point and a brisk north- easter it was on the chilly side at 7.45 this morning!
A quick walk around Pagham Spit, a brief visit to the hide and a return along the beach enabled 3 images as shown below... I may venture out again later.

A Curlew eyeing me from the main path

A Wigeon preening in front of the hide

Mediterranean Gulls retreating at my advance along the tides' edge...note the very pale underwings and no sign of any black on the wing tips...very diagnostic.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

A quiet day

Very little activity numbers much reduced and waders not seen in the numbers of the recent past. On the Lagoon 3 Goldeneye and a few Tufties. Where/why have they gone?

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

An early morning site meeting

On looking from the window this morning at 8.30, 6 figures were seen to be walking from the Church Norton side of Pagham Harbour to the end of the much elongated shingle spit. The Reserve staff were accompanied by 3 important looking visitors and much arm waving was taking place! Concerns have been expressed at the very rapiod movement of shingle which some have said could even block the harbour entrance. Hopefully as a result of this meeting some action will be taken to at least preserve our home being washed away in the near future!

This image was taken yesterday showing the high tide level which is fairly typical during very high Spring Tides. Equally the low tides are also very low hence the timing of this mornings meeting so that the full the extent of the shingle movement could be seen quite clearly.

It is a grey miserable looking day today so birding will be restricted to 'window' viewing....50 Mediterranean Gulls have just flown over the bungalow to the shingle bank now that the meeting has disbursed.

Monday, February 1, 2010

An Icy Morning

A very sharp frost had produced some fascinating ice crystals in the puddles!!

The harbour is just full of birds at present...masses of Wigeon,Teal,Brent,Pintail and thousands of waders...a really good time for visiting birdwatchers to brush up their I.D. skills. This time of year is always 'peak' for sheer volume but anyone reading this should check the tide tables and ensure they come well before high tide i.e. at least 3 hours
The Scaup is still present on the Lagoon...and still asleep!