My UK Year List - 2014

  • 117-118) GREAT WHITE EGRET and LONG-TAILED DUCKS at Mary's Lake, Earls Barton GP, 9 January
  • 116) Barnacle Goose, Emberton Park, 9 January
  • 114-115) SMEW and Cetti's Warbler at Great Hardmead Lake, Amwell, 7 January
  • 113) Reed Bunting, Tyttenhanger, 7 January
  • 112) Tree Sparrow (32 birds), Tyttenhanger, 7 January
  • 111) Sparrowhawk, West Hyde, 7 January
  • 110) Mandarin Duck, Burnham Beeches NNR, 7 January
  • 100-109) Curlew, Knot, Bar-tailed Godwit, Dunlin, Oystercatcher, Grey Plover, Sanderling, Common Shelduck, Kittiwake and Mediterranean Gull at Church Norton, 6 January
  • 99) RUDDY SHELDUCK, Sidlesham Ferry, 6 January
  • 96-98) Purple Sandpiper, Turnstone and Rock Pipit in Shoreham Harbour
  • 95) Red-breasted Merganser, Widewater, 6 January
  • 94) GREY PHALAROPE, Hove Lagoon, 6 January
  • 93) Grey Partridge, Broom, 5 January
  • 92) Goosander, Woburn Lakes, 5 January
  • 91) Skylark, Totternhoe, 5 January
  • 90) Yellowhammer, Totternhoe, 5 January
  • 89) Corn Bunting, Totternhoe, 5 January
  • 88) Water Pipit, Wilstone, 5 January
  • 87) SABINE'S GULL, Weston Turville, 5 January
  • 86) Common Scoter, Brogborough, 4 January
  • 85) GREAT NORTHERN DIVER, Stewartby Lake, 4 January
  • 84) Red-legged Partridge, Hatch, 4 January
  • 83) Common Kestrel, Langford, 4 January
  • 82) GLOSSY IBIS, Frensham, 4 January
  • 81) Goldcrest, Frensham, 4 January
  • 80) Green Sandpiper, Lynsters, 3 January
  • 79) Stock Dove, Lynster's, 3 January
  • 78) Egyptian Goose, Lynsters Farm, 3 January
  • 77) Common Chiffchaff, Stockers Lake
  • 76) SIBERIAN CHIFFCHAFF, Stockers Lake
  • 75) Siskin, Stockers Lake
  • 74) Dunnock, Stockers Lake
  • 73) Ring-necked Parakeet, Stockers Lake
  • 72) Lesser Redpoll, Stockers Lake
  • 71) Coal Tit, Chaffinch House
  • 40-70: Nuthatch, Greylag Goose, Pied Wagtail, Lapwing, Golden Plover, Great Crested Grebe, Cormorant, Common Redshank, Common Snipe, Teal, Wigeon, Shoveler, LITTLE STINT, Black-tailed Godwit, Grey Wagtail, Goldeneye, Meadow Pipit, Greenfinch, Marsh Tit, Dunnock, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Long-tailed Tit, Bullfinch, Jay, Red-crested Pochard, Wren, Collared Dove (all at Tring Reservoirs), Brambling (Ivinghoe), Herring & Great Black-backed Gull, CATTLE EGRET (Briarhill Farm, Calvert) & Green Woodpecker
  • 1-39 all local, Chess River Valley & Shardeloes Estate: 1 January 2014: Chaffinch, Common Starling, Woodpigeon, Little Egret, Grey Heron, Common Magpie, Mute Swan, Mallard, Moorhen, Carrion Crow, Jackdaw, Rook, Common Buzzard, Canada Goose, Coot, Black-headed Gull, Tufted Duck, Pochard, House Sparrow, Common Blackbird, Woodpigeon, Pheasant, Gadwall, Kingfisher, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Robin, Great Tit, Blue Tit, Little Grebe, Common Gull, Red Kite, Redwing, Fieldfare, Song Thrush, Goldfinch, Mistle Thrush, WOODCOCK, Treecreeper, Greenfinch and Water Rail

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Year Listing in the UK

Lee Evans has been Year-listing in the UK since 1977 and has achieved annual totals of over 300 species ever since. Although he has recorded in excess of 360 species on some nine occasions, his record stands at 386 species - achieved in 1996. Adrian Webb in Year 2000 recorded at least 378 species, making him by far the highest-listing individual to compare with Lee. In terms of Life Listing, Lee has recorded 577 species in Britain and Ireland and 853 species in the wider Western Palearctic region.

Monday, 6 January 2014

There's showing well and showing well but today's GREY PHALAROPE really took the biscuit.......

Although very windy today, surprisingly it didn't rain and with temperatures at 11 degrees C, it was rather quite pleasant. After hearing of escapades in Hove yesterday afternoon, I decided to head down to SUSSEX today and take part in the action.
I arrived at HOVE LAGOON at around 1100 hours and spent the next couple of hours photographing at very close range, the storm-displaced GREY PHALAROPE as it fed and preened on the tiny children's paddling pool to the east of the main lagoon. It was an unbelievable scene, with members of the public watching in disbelief as 30 or so birders crouched and lay flat on their bellies photographing and videoing the lost waif. I took over 900 images of the bird, the vast majority being of good quality. It was an unforgettable experience - and in great company too.
A first-winter Pied Wagtail joined the Grey Phalarope for a short while and across the main road, a flock of 8 House Sparrows was noted.

At WIDEWATER LAGOON, SHOREHAM-BY-SEA, these 6 Red-breasted Mergansers were showing well, whilst nearby at SHOREHAM FORT, a flock of 7 PURPLE SANDPIPERS and 12 Turnstone was roosting on the breakwater 80 yards south of the Coastguards Hut. A Rock Pipit was in the vicinity too but no sign of the Black Redstart. The sea swell was amazing with 9 foot waves crashing into the harbour walls.

Red-breasted Mergansers

Purple Sandpipers and Turnstones roosting on the breakwater

Crashing waves in the harbour

 At PAGHAM HARBOUR, I had never seen so much water - the tide was crashing over the shingle and the entire harbour was flooded (see pic below). Little room for waders but the three islands held 118 Oystercatcher, 760 Lapwing, 17 Common Redshank, 815 Red Knot, 24 Turnstone, an impressive 404 Grey Plover, 45 Bar-tailed Godwit and 70 Black-tailed Godwit, along with 76 Great Black-backed Gulls and a few Eurasian Curlew and 4 Common Shelduck, whilst offshore both MEDITERRANEAN GULL and Kittiwake were present; 8 Red-breasted Mergansers too.

Pagham Harbour in flood

Adult Mediterranean Gull

Kittiwake in rough seas

At SIDLESHAM FERRY POOL nearby, both RUDDY SHELDUCK were present with 58 Common Shelducks as well as 440 Wigeon, 130 Teal and 64 Shoveler.

 The Burpham area was totally underwater and therefore failed to yield any Bewick's Swans whilst Ivy Lake at dusk was devoid of any Whooper Swans.

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