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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, January 30, 2016

Nothing special but....

a pleasant sunny afternoon and I think a photo worth keeping of Brent Geese over Chichester Cathedral.
This one or maybe...

this one!
Apart from high tide wader movements, mostly distant Lapwings and Grey Plover little else to report of note.
Grey Plovers heading out the harbour.

Showing their diagnostic black 'armpits'.

Plenty of the 'usual' ducks...mostly Teal and Wigeon and at least two pairs of Goldeneye.
Here a pair of Wigeon dabbling in the shallows.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

What a contrast in the weather....cold and frosty and windless. Firstly a look around the Spit..
A Robin ...always welcome!

...and then to the hide where I was given a fantastic display by a pair of Red Breasted Mergansers...
Firstly the male arrived...

...and saw a distant male approaching

...then got into a bit of a tangle

...when a female arrived

..both males escorted the female

...when another female arrived on the scene!

This caused havoc! 

...and confusion  and ultimately all four birds pushed off.
In the afternoon I decided to go in search of a bird of which  I have never got even a reasonable photo.
 I had received a tip of that within the WWT at Arundel there was a 'hot spot' ! Having tracked down the location I waited and eventually I could make out a tiny  bird in the midst of a large bramble patch. Yes it had a magnificent head dress and a prominent white stripe above the eye....BUT....would it show itself in the open? In and out of the thickest part of the bush,high up,low down and constantly on the move. What an impossible little critter to are the best efforts....

It came out for half a second

...rapid fire at ten frames per second....

Make the most of it....

One quick flurry of activity and it was gone!!
Whilst in the Wildfowl Trust I had to have a look around to see what was about.
At the feeding station the usual candidates....,

Great Tit

Blue Tit

Mallards....the not so 'usual' candidates on a bird table!

Reed Bunting on a feeder (I don't generally like photos of birds on feeders but this is an exception)
Long Tailed Tit

Chaffinch (the duller female!)
I like even less, photographs of captive birds but here are few more exceptions!....

Red Crested Pochard 

Red Breasted Goose...close up.

Shelduck..(bathing)..might be genuine wild!

Genuine wild Gadwall. ( I think!)

Barrows Goldeneye...definitely NOT wild! (but what a bird!! )

Last but not least a genuine Water Rail through the misty glass of the main hall!!
 I will have to return to get that definitive photo of a Firecrest...that's bird photography!

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

My blogs of the last couple of days have mysteriously  disappeared!

Not a lot of activity but we have had a few very high tides. The Norton Spit was breached for a few days and these shot were taken Monday...

..but today with an even higher tide the amount of over topping was minimal..,see below
...the Oystercatchers, Dunlin and Grey Plover obviously liked the change of scenery.

Goldeneye in front of hide
Taking off and heading for the Lagoon
Fabulous ducks...drakes actually!

Great Crested Grebe in front of Spit hide.
That's it for today but see my Pagham Beach Blog for details of a program to be shown on BBC South on Monday Jan 18 at 7.30 regarding Pagham Beach and the harbour entrance,.

Thursday, January 7, 2016

The morning dawned bright and sunny....but windy, again. A small bird darted across the Lagoon and landed on an overhanging branch...a fair distance from where I was standing...a real little jewel of a bird................
Kingfisher in the early morning sunshine.
What a start to the day...three minutes from my front door!
I headed towards the Spit hide and just sat and admired the many wader flocks moving around the harbour as the tide rose. Nothing unusual but here are a few shots just for the record...

One of the many wader flocks constantly changing position

Mixed flock of Dunlin, Knot and Grey Plover

Closer views as they swept past the hide

Knot and Dunlin 

Grey Plover in foreground 

A pleasant quarter of an hour to start the day!