I was expecting a foggy morning and thought I'd head up high to avoid it, so the trip started at Bignor Hill. When I arrived the visibility was excellent, and I stood for a short while watching a stag deer cross a field in the distance. However, not a moment after I left the car park visibility deteriorated significantly, and I couldn't see 10 metres in front of me. I didn't expect it to improve any time soon so decided to abandon the trip and find another spot.
As I drove down the Greatham lane towards Amberley the wildbrooks looked quite clear. It's been six weeks since I visited this site, and I'm glad I did today as it was an excellent birding trip. The rain has caused much flooding, and there were gulls everywhere, mostly Black-headed Gulls, and the sound of geese could be heard from the track leading from Amberley village. I recorded 45 species in total, with a few not making the list as I wasn't confident on the ID, including Ring Ouzal which I'm sure I heard around the by kissing gate leading to the river. Around by the swamp a Water Rail was heard squeeling, and 2 Song Thrushes and 2 Yellowhammers were also in that area. A flock of 16 Egyptian Geese went over, and another two were on the ground in one of the fields. A Raven came over noisily as a strolled back along the river bank. A Marsh Harrier was quartering over the fields, making the gulls and Lapwing nervous, and being harassed by crows. The passerines around seemed unfazed by my presence giving excellent views, and there were many Stonechats about.
|Great Spotted Woodpecker|