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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.

Friday, April 28, 2017

The Pagham Cuckoo..and more!

The Cuckoos were calling in their  favourite bush again this morning and I was joined by Roy and Gareth Hughes...nice to meet them on my local patch. 
 The bird was not easily spooked but was fairly mobile and one would fly across the Lagoon and return s few minutes later and then disappear into the bush. The vast numbers of Brown Tail Moths were a tremendous attraction and the bird would land on the 'tent' and just tuck in! Here are few shots.....

He is certainly not short of food!

Willow Warbler in the bramble.

Coot nesting on the Lagoon

Heron...head on!
 For the past couple of weeks there has been a distinctly odd looking sparrow associating with the locals. At last , today, I was able to get a closer view and discover it was a part leucistic  male House Sparrow. It is particularly noticeable when in flight and reminiscent of a Snow beware!

Tomorrow is another day...who knows what may turn up!

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Cuckoo calling!

A bitterly cold North East wind was not an encouraging start to my early morning walk....but as I came out my front door, a Cuckoo was heard calling in the bushes by the Lagoon. I quickly tracked it down and made a cautious approach with camera at the ready.
It was not easy to obtain a good view which wasn't obstructed by branches.

Typical pose with wings they very often do.

Now and again it would fly off and then I discovered there were not one, but two Cuckoos!

Calling from a more distant bush.
Out of the many photos I took in 20 minutes this is probably the best, which I have put on Flickr but there is still room for much improvement. Lets hope they stay around and that the weather warms was a cold job this morning!

Monday, April 24, 2017

Forecast of a change in the weather.

Cold, cloudy weather was forecast this morning so I was out early to enjoy brilliant sunshine. I heard (and saw briefly)  my first Cuckoo yesterday evening in the bushes around the Lagoon and this morning I could hear a Cuckoo on the Church Norton side of the harbour. Within a few minutes I heard one by the Little Lagoon but unfortunately was  unable to photograph it. 
A Skylark was the only bird allowing a close approach.

So a decision was made to walk to the North Wall to see if the reported Ruff were still about. Along the way a pair of Whitethroats were showing well and the female was building a nest in a bramble patch....

Nest building 

On the alert and watching me.

There were several Lesser Whitethroats singing their scratchy song in the Slipe Field bushes but tended to be very secretive.

Moving on along the shoreline Whimbrels were much in evidence and were calling out in the harbour...this one was a little more obliging.

Once on the North Wall, Cettis Warblers, Sedge Warblers and Reed Warblers were in full song although not easy to photograph. However with a little patience I was able to track down the Reed Warbler but as any photographer will know getting a clear view is difficult and focusing through the reed bed even more so. I find manual focusing the only way in these circumstances.

On the return a mixed flock of Dunlin, Grey Plover and Knot...

an Oystercatcher...

.....a pair of Great Crested Grebes.....

...and a diminutive Wren with a very loud voice atop a dead branch.

That's it for today, folk.

p.s. The Ruff were not present as the water level had risen unaccountably and there was no suitable feeding fringe.

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Photos from the past week.

Not much to shout about this week as I have been busy, busy....rather than birding! So just a few record shots...............

First Mallard ducklings on Pagham Lagoon

Drake Teal on Breech Pool 

Flighting Grey Plovers in the harbour.

Turnstone ...(old) harbour entrance

The Long Pool....Gadwalls...fighting?

Drake Gadwall

Reed Warbler...Long Pool.

Small Copper...Visitor Centre Pagham RSPB

Whitethroat...Slipe Field

Sedge Warbler...Breech Pool

Reed Bunting...Long Pool.

Skylark...Pagham Spit

The ever growing Rampton wind farm...from Pagham beach.
A better blog next week...hopefully!