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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.

Monday, September 24, 2012

What a blow....but all is not lost!

With a Force 8 blowing along the beach and torrential rain it was pretty obvious the day was going to be a non starter as far as birding was concerned. An occasional look out the window to see if any Brents were arriving (I have a diary note from last year that this was my first day for Brents last year) all I saw were a few bedraggled Swallows fighting against the wind.

At 2.30p.m. the rain stopped and as I needed fresh air I fancied a walk, or a battle against the wind to the Spit hide. I had only gone 50yds when a small bird flitted across the Lagoon and disappeared. I hung on and as I tried to steady my bins a Pied Flycatcher flew from a bramble for a fly. Naturally I was totally unprepared so returned home to collect the camera gear and returned to the spot in hope.

After 10 minutes there it was....great, but the branch was waggling up and down  (as they do in a Force 8! ) The bird was trying to balance, hence a series of rather unusual postures.

Pied Flycatcher balancing act.

....Plus a couple of different shots on Flickr. This is a nice bird for Pagham Spit so I was pleased I had made the effort to get out the house!

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Breech Pool again!

 Following overnight rain, this morning dawned bright and sunny and I hurried down to the North Wall  to attempt to improve on my shots of the Little Stint taken  in less than ideal conditions yesterday afternoon.

On arrival I found Dave Potter with his camera trained on the very spot where the Stint was yesterday but alas, no stint today! However he pointed out a large Dunlin which he reckoned was a Curlew Sandpiper! After much debate and discussion a question mark hung over the ID! Eventually we were joined by Andrew House who did not have a Curlew Sandpiper...what else?

Well of course it is and from the images below there cannot be any only niggle now is that maybe it IS a juvenile.

There's my white rump!

A little bit of a peach wash on the breast.

Comments please.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Pagham is best!

Having just returned from two weeks in Suffolk and Norfolk I still conclude that Pagham Harbour takes a lot of beating!

Having stepped out the front door first thing this morning I was greeted by hundrds of Sand Martins flying to and fro and gathering on the 'phone lines,

...then it was up to the Spit hide to check to see how many ducks and waders had arrived during the past 14 days. I was surprised to see a fisherman pole fishing for Mullet...a first for me as I had never befors seen this method used in the harbour.
Pole fishing
Mid afternoon I decided to see what was happening at Breech Pool...I was not disappointed as there were  Greenshanks, Spotted Redshanks,  Little Ringed Plovers, Dunlin, Snipe, Black Tailed Godwits and best of all a Little first this Autumn.

...and as the evening drew near the sky filled with Hirundines, mostly Swallows and the calls of the overflying Curlews could be heard as they flew to roost as the light faded....Pagham magic!

That is not to say chasing a Barred Warbler in Holme or finding Pec Sands in Minsmere and Titchwell and watching hundreds of Pink Feet coming into Cley wasn't  great birding, but its always good coming back to your home patch.

Here are  a few pics .....................

Spoonbills Redwell , Holme

Bar tailed Godwits

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Barn Owl at dusk...Redwell marsh

Juvenile Gannets passing off shore wind farm.

Bar tailed Godwit...Titchwell beach

Avocet...from Parinder hide Titchwell

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Red Footed Falcon

A call from Ivan Lang ....Red Footed Falcon...Ivy Lake!!!
Within 15 minutes I was there and it was not long before this fantastic bird appeared....changing spots frequently and chasing dragon flies and on one occasion a small finch like bird!

Some heavy crops but another instance of not being able to stop taking images...a super bird!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

A Glossy morning!!

Excellent early morning light so a visit to Breech Pool to look for the reported Whinchats.
No sign of Whinchats BUT the Glossy Ibis was showing really well!
 Lots of photos....sorry, but could not resist!

Size comparison with Mallard


Saturday, September 1, 2012

Birds of another kind!

What a difference a day makes....after yesterdays migrants,  this morning yielded nothimg! Not a single Wheatear, let alone a Whinchat or Redstart! A coach load of birdwatchers off loaded a large group at about 10.00am and I  felt sorry they weren't here yesterday...I suspect they found it a bit bird dead!
However I'm sure they found the waders of interest and the winter ducks are arriving...Teal and Wigeon and later in the day a small flock of Shoveler came in off the sea.

The bird of the day had to be this one as it headed to Shoreham......

The only flying Vulcan!

...a great sighting!

Oh... and yes, there were hundreds upon hundreds of hirundines  hawking low over the beach going west at 8.00am but they too had gone on their way by 9.00am