Sunday, 27 March 2011

27th March 2011 Beachy Head Seawatch 7.30am-9.15am ENE3 Overcast

Red-throated Diver 15E, 1 on sea
Great Crested Grebe 2E
Gannet 11E
Brent Goose 43E
Merganser 4E
Scoter 64E
Mallard 5E drakes
Shoveler 9E
Red Kite 1N juv. ex. over top of Birling Lane
Peregrine 1E notably dark on the underparts
Auk sp. 11E
Razorbill 1 on sea
Grey Plover 2E
Sandwich Tern 10E
Tawny Owl 1 grey phase
Woodpigeon 30E
alba Wagtail 3N
White Wagtail 4
Black Redstart 4 (including 1 singing Birling Gap)
Stonechat 7
Wheatear 15 ex.
Robin 3
Chiffchaff 3
Blackcap h singing
Goldcrest 5
Corn Bunting 1
Lapland Bunting 1 ex. fvo at 1.20pm
Siskin 1h
Carrion Crow 2 in off
Raven 1
Stoat 1
Juvenile Red Kite over the Birling Gap Lane

Aged by virtue of the visible pale tips to its greater coverts, pale vent and pale buff head.

Male Wheatear at the Birling Gap Lane

White Wagtail at Belle Tout

This individual's plain grey mantle is shown to good effect and its grey rump between its two middle tertials is just visible.

Saturday, 26 March 2011

26th March 2011 Beachy Seawatch 6.30 - 8.30am N1 Misty & Sidlesham Ferry

Red-throated Diver 7E, 1 on sea
Gannet 9E
Brent Goose 452E
Merganser 4E
Scoter 124E, 1 on sea
Wigeon 2E
Shoveler 2E
Peregrine 1
Curlew 8E
Dunlin 3E
Black-headed Gull 60E
Mediterranean Gull 1E Adult
Sandwich Tern 6E
Red-legged Partridge 1
Stonechat 5
Wheatear 7
Black Redstart 6 ex.
Robin 3
alba Wagtail 4N
White Wagtail 7 ex.
Meadow Pipit 40
Chiffchaff 11
Willow Warbler 2 ex. (1 singing)
Goldcrest 2
Yellowhammer 1 male singing
Linnet 22

Chiffchaffs at Birling Gap

Female Wheatear amongst the Violets at Belle Tout

Male Wheatear at Belle Tout

Singing male Yellowhammer at Belle Tout

Four Black Redstarts together at Belle Tout

Singing male Willow Warbler at Belle Tout

White Wagtails at Birling Gap

Jackdaw at the Old Trapping Area

Just about annually, since Birding World published Identification of Jackdaw forms in northwestern Europe in 2000, it has been possible to find early Spring Jackdaws, often feeding in grassy fields rather than along the cliff edges, that show characters approaching those shown by Nordic Jackaws C.m. monedula. The above individual shows a silvery collar and grey underparts, mantle and scapulars that contrast with its darker wings. In addition its ear-coverts and nape appear noticeably pale. However, such birds somehow lack a 'feel good factor'. The underparts lack a scaly appearance. Is the collar broad enough? So, could they be Common Jackdaws C.m. spermologus being seen with the strong early Spring light enhancing their contrasts? Can they simply be explained by being worn by March, which can result in a paler collar?

Goldcrest in the Old Trapping Area

Goldcrest in the Beachy Head Hotel Garden

Sidlesham Ferry Pool
Hooded Merganser 1 adult drake
Mediterranean Gull 16 flew off east

Flock of Mediterranean Gulls at Sidlesham Ferry Pool

Drake Hooded Merganser on Sidlesham Ferry Pool