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Post Info TOPIC: Hampshire and West Sussex


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Hampshire and West Sussex


Pagham Harbour, West Sussex:

After not planning to go on such a long twitch I had an offer I couldn't refuse of someone else driving to & fromSussex and a car with three in it to share costs. It would be daft not to so I accepted the offer.

Deciding no sleep was best we set off at 1am and encountered numerous overnight road closures (inc M5, M3, A34, for any else planning a trip) but still arrived at 5am allowing us to get a space in the Rectory Lane car park, then one nearest to the viewing point. About 15 people were gathered watching the tern island into low sun, awful viewing conditions and so not surprisingly the Elegant Tern wasn't seen. We all moved to a better angle and then stared intensly down scopes for the next 4 hours! Still it was rewarding with a Roseate Tern flying in, showing off its extra long tail streamers and seemingly all dark beak (at a distance!), lots of Little, Common and Sandwich Terns also showed well, but no Elegant! Then at around 9.05am one of the throng shouted that he had it and informed us all where it had gone down in the vegetation. I found his instructions excellent and fixed my scope on that point and whils others tried to clarify where he meant it flew up again and I got it, Elegant Tern oml (on my list, as the late Pod Antrobus used to say at twitches smile ). A few folk got on it before if dropped down out of sight again. This was repeated again 40mins later, but today the tern was playing hard to get and people were missing its brief flight views. Large numbers of Mediterranean Gulls also kept us entertained whilst waiting but we decided that we all needed to be back early and so set off home at 10.30am.

Being Friday the roads were awful, a nightmare journey ensued and what took 4hrs down took 6.5hrs back no Thank goodness we got the bird as we were all shattered when back, having been up for 37hrs and counting! And enduring that horrid journey home in sweltering sunshine! Still a first for Britain is always worth it and my twitches are rare these days so it's nice when they're successful smile



-- Edited by Doc Brewster on Friday 16th of June 2017 06:54:59 PM



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Originally posted today by Dave Ousey:

Elegant Tern, Pagham Harbour, West Sussex:

     Elegant Tern has never been accepted onto the British List, the chances of being able to prove that they were not a hybrid`s has always clouded the issue. Three Elegant Tern`s have been breeding with Sandwich Tern`s for a few years in the south of France, producing hybrids, the adults are rung differently and DNA samples have categorically proved them to be pure Elegant Tern`s. One of these birds was seen on Hayling Island, Hampshire for a short while on two different occasions, last week. No more sightings of the bird were seen until last Saturday morning, this time in Pagham Harbour, Sussex in with a colony of breeding terns.

   With such a positive identification on the birds identity, we organised a trip to go and see the bird. Messages were sent out and a team of myself, Bob K, Andy M and one of our original team Kevin C, welcome back Kev. At 11-30pm on Sunday night I left Rochdale picking up our team on route, Andy M near Warrington was last at 12-30am and off we went in my car. We made good time, as it was my idea to get a place to park on the Church Norton car park, thus avoiding a long walk. It was just coming light as we arrived at 4-45am with only 6 cars on the car park. We hurried down the short path and joined the other 12 early birders. At 5am the Elegant Tern was seen preening on a sand bar, about 150 yards away in poor light. At 5-30am we watched the bird flying around and then flying out to sea. It would be almost three hours before it returned. We watched the other birds seeing: - Sandwich, Common & Little Tern`s, Greater Black Backed, Herring & Black Headed Gull`s and a final count of around 100+ Mediterranean Gull`s, very impressive. Ringed Plover, Redshank, Mallard, Coot, Grey Heron and lots of Swallow`s.

    At 8-20am a message on Rare Bird Alert said the Elegant Tern had flown in and landed out of sight on Tern Island. It was a difficult bird to see as the grass was quite long. Once we had it pinned down though, the bird kept flying up and showing itself to all the birders who just kept watching the right spot with their telescopes. It was a difficult bird to see, but these views of it were very good in sunny conditions. Just after 10am we decided to retire to the car for food and refreshment and then start the journey home. We made a couple of stops on the way back and I got home at 4-15pm, a long but memorable day out!

Dave Ousey.

 



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31st May

River Avon Floodplains at Burton
2 Little Egret

Testwood Lakes
1 Hobby but no sign of Great White Egret

River Test at Southampton
1 Little Egret


1st June

Anderwood in the New Forest
Singing male Wood Warbler

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Back down here visiting in-laws;

Goshawk over the garden being mobbed
Firecrest - 3 in total around the garden (seems to be the junction of a few territories)
Crossbill - 1 over the garden
Nuthatch nest building as was a long-tailed tit.

Dave

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A very early morning start for myself and Phil Hampson first of all took us to Calshot in Hampshire for the long staying Spanish Sparrow.

Shortly after arrival around 8.15am, the bird was located in the hedgerows and treated us to excellent binocular views as it sat amongst the House Sparrows. It continuously called away to give a nice comparison and although I had seen this species abroad, to actually see this bird in the UK was fantastic. A stunning little bird which Phil took some nice shots of. Also present of interest were a calling Raven and a Green Woodpecker.

Next stop was the New Forest Hawkhill Inclosure for the reported Dark-eyed Junco.

After an hour or so of waiting patiently for the bird to feed on the seeded logs, I decided to take a walk around and thankfully located the bird.

It was feeding on the ground before it flew up onto a small Birch tree and showed well to those present before flying further away onto a fallen Pine. Also seen were several Reed Buntings, 2 Crossbills, 5 Buzzards and 4 Siskins.

We then headed a few miles down the road to Hordle for the reported Rose-coloured Starling (a bird Phil had already seen, but in my case, bit of a bogey bird I was keen to catch up with!)

The bird was out of view initially, as it was feeding in one of the nearby back gardens but after around 20 minutes, thankfully out it flew into view onto a nearby bush and good but brief views were had before it disappeared into cover.

A great trip out and with 3 lifers in one day , we headed back home in the early afternoon.

Also en-route of interest were a Barn Owl and 2 Red Kites.

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Ian McKerchar wrote:

Juvenile Yellow-legged Gulls in January





Well, they certainly weren't adults As to their level of maturity, I couldn't possibly comment

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Ian McKerchar wrote:

Juvenile Yellow-legged Gulls in January





That's global warming for you!

I think Mr.Chorley meant 1st winter

-- Edited by Mark Rigby on Wednesday 1st of February 2012 12:58:07 PM

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Juvenile Yellow-legged Gulls in January

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Ian McKerchar (forum administrator and owner)


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Trip with Riggers to The New Forest for Spanish Sparrow and Dark-eyed Junco.

The Calshot Sparrow showed well in it's accustomed roost at 7.45, before heading off to it's favorite garden. We had brief but good views of it there thanks to the kindness of the local birder who had originally found it. Within the hour, had similar views of the Junco, feeding in the area of felled conifer at Hawkhill Inclosure(sic) with 14 Reed Buntings. Good views of several Common Crossbills kept us occupied while it failed to show again for the next hour.

The 65 species total for our 14 hr round trip included:
Hen Harrier (m) and at least 3 Dartford Warblers in the vicinity of Beaulieu Road Station
6 Adult & 2 Juvenile Yellow-Legged Gulls at Blashford Lakes (all P10's checked where applicable)
1 Whooper Swan with C100 Mute Swans at Harbridge &
3 Red Kites at various points along the A34 north of Andover;
Topped off with the Slavonian Grebe at Hollingworth Lake.

Thanks to Riggers for a cracking day out!

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Down visiting my girlfriends parents literally on the Hampshire/West Sussex border - one end of garden in one county, other in other county!

Pair of Firecrest feeding young at the bottom of the garden, it has been great to watch them whilst I have been down here!

Dave

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Just back from a brief sojourn for work down into Hampshire.

Nice views of the Red-breasted Goose this morning along with lots of dark-bellied Brents and a Peregrine having its breakfast only a few yards away.

Managed 1 hour at Faccombe where the RLB remained elusive though I did see loads of Common Buzzards, a few Red Kites, a Peregrine and a Hawfinch. Bl**dy cold on that hill.

It was interesting that there were a dozen or so birders present, most of whom stood around chatting or sitting in their cars. There weren't many of us actually scanning the skies and the surrounding countryside for the bird in question.

Thanks Ian for the tips.

Mike

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Thanks Ian I'll keep my eyes on the road!!!

Still can't do "show preview" on posts or add those little winking things - emoticons.

Sid



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If the weather is dry and reasonably clear Sid you can literally not miss them but the concentrations tend to be in between just south of Oxford and the A404 junction, though I think we had a few well north of Oxford on this trip. Trouble is, you're so bust looking out of the window when you really should be driving and you haven't a clue exactly where you are!

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Ian

I am down in Oxford tomorrow and Thursday, where on the M40 were the Red Kites please.

Sid

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4 days in Hampshire and West Sussex (with a little bit of Bershire/Surrey and Oxfordshire thrown in) produced the following highlights:

Rough-legged Buzzard- 2nd winter male near Andover, Hampshire, showed well with Common BUzzards and Red Kites too.

Farlington Marshes (Hampshire)- Black Brant, Water Pipit (2), Long-eared Owl, Avocet (5), some great birding at this site.

Hayling Island Oyster Beds (Hampshire)- Black-necked Grebe (16 in a single flock), Glaucous Gull (2nd winter)

West Wittering (West Sussex)- Red-breasted Goose

Pagham Harbour (West Sussex)- Slavonian Grebe (22 off shore there, some superb views watching them feeding in the surf), 250 ish Mediterranean Gulls (mainly in a single flock, the vast majority of which were adults)

Thursley Common (Berkshire?)- Woodlark (around a dozen atleast, very easily found and mainly singing etc), Hen Harrier (male)

All finished off on the drive home today with a marvellous count of 85 Red Kites in a 20 or so minute stretch of the M40

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