Amberley Wildbrooks, Chichester Harbour, Chantry and Kithurst

It was nice to be back out birding again today after a busy couple of weeks, and it was a pleasure to see the Common Gulls back under the castle at Amberley with about 100 this morning along with a few Black-headed Gulls. It was a challenge to count the other birds, however, with them spread over a large area, but the swamp was busy with thrushes, with both Redwing and Fieldfare in good number. Here, too, were about 60 Teal, 4 Snipe, 2 Cetti's Warblers, and 2 Marsh Harriers. A large flock of a few hundred ducks moved west across the reserve in the distance and these were all Wigeon I think. A flock of 100 Lapwing was sprawled across the sky at one point. 2 Buzzards, 2 Red Kites and a Kestrel were recorded, but there was no Merlin today. up towards the wet wood a Kingfisher was calling noisily and a couple of Lesser Redpolls were heard in the trees, but not seen. 

I headed to Chichester Harbour to see if I could find the Velvet Scoters that have been there a couple of days. I parked up at West Wittering village and headed down Ellanore Lane. It was a spring tide and the little of Ellanore Spit that remained above water was packed with waders that put on a great show; there must've been a thousand Dunlin, frequently swirling around in large flocks. Oystercatchers, Ringed Plover, Grey Plover, Curlew, and a single Knot were also amongst them. I soon spotted the scoters with their white face patches, although they were quite distant. It wasn't until they were flushed and flew off with a Red-breasted Merganser that I managed decent views. 

Velvet Scoters



After a sandwich in the car I headed to Kithurst and walked to Chantry and back. It was fairly quiet with just 22 species seen with the highlight being 3 Stonechat and a single Common Gull. 


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