|Wood Pigeon feasting on guelder rose|
|Low, winter light over castle|
Today was forecast to be poor, and setting off in light drizzle seemed to be slightly foolish! However, Arundel provides opportunities for birding in the dry being such a small site with evenly placed hides and comfy viewing from the restaurant. Luckily, Offham Hanger provided a good windbreak from the strong south-westerly and the rain stopped on arrival and only restarted just after getting home.
A Little Grebe was very close in from the restaurant and the ducks included three Pochards. Snipe were clearly abundant with PS saying he'd flushed 20 or so from Arun Riverlife; elsewhere I only saw about 10 but the reed bed was being strimmed so that area seemed devoid of birds. The one here was snapped through the Swaro with the new smartphone, as was the sleepy Greylag - not ideal photos but good enough for record shots handheld to the eyepiece.
Small birds other than Goldfinches on feeders were noticeably absent although 20 Redwing overhead and about 60 Fieldfares flushed by raptors over the river were nice to see and hear and later two Ravens flew off towards Burpham.
A few kites were active but distant, this one attracting the attentions of a Peregrine (maybe defending a kill?) which eventually flew up into its usual lookout on the hanger. Just one Kingfisher sighting, perched up but off in a flash when it saw me, and a few calls from beyond the fenceline.
People-wise, very quiet which made a change; quick catch up with PS and SH who was delighted with the arrival of a couple of Red-breasted Mergansers in the collection.
Lastly a brief look down river from the Black Rabbit at 3 p.m. produced zero, being a little too early for roosting harriers; apparently now up to eleven birds coming in.
P.S. Info on the Hill Head colour-ringed Sanderlings came back from AdP (via Pete). All three ringed on Hayling with one being 2013 and the other two 2017. Various local sightings in between those dates and now with the older bird appearing in late July; an early return or did it not return to breeding grounds this year??