Tuesday, 31 January 2012

Beachy Head 2011 Summary No.26

2011: Jan-Feb: Up to 11 on a day recorded during this period.
Spring: Again just small numbers recorded with 8 on the 4/6. Breeding not recorded.
Autumn: Just small numbers recorded upto the end of September. Movement got under way in October and from the 6/10 to 20/11 good numbers were recorded on many dates with a total of 7,160 moving E during this period, with daily maximums of: 8/10 660 E, 14/10 500 E, 28/10 1,000 + E, 2/11 350 E, 5/11 2,135 E, 13/11 500 E, 19/11 180 E. Winter: Just 4 found feeding on the 10/12. Per B.H.Log.
(An average Autumn. In the 1960's approx. 15 breeding pairs were estimated and good numbers of juveniles could be found feeding on thistles in Whitbread Hollow in early August, which sadly is no longer the case).

2011: None recorded during the Spring.
Autumn: Recorded on 26 dates from 9/9 (15) to 13/11 (4). In total 779 bird-days although on a number of days, birds were very high and could only be heard, and many must have been missed. Daily maximums: 9/10 150 W, 15/10 173 E, 5/11 217 E (142 E over Holywell & 75 E over Birling, so there may have been some double counting between the two sites). Per B.H.Log.
(Another excellent Autumn and generally more birds are now being seen during the Autumn passage than in our earlier years. Our largest movement so far recorded was on the 29/9/1988 when a total of 1,500 were logged moving West).

2011: Spring: Only odd birds seen until the 26/3 (15). By the 3/4 120 were in the rough field, although these had moved on by the 10/4 when only 10 were seen. On the 9/4 40 arrived in off the sea, and on the 16/4 60 moved W. On the 30/5 the whole area was walked and 38 were logged which probably represents the breeding birds.
Autumn: On the 14/8 a flock of 50 were in the field opposite Belle Tout wood, with a 100 on the 10/9. On the 22/9 200 were logged, of which 100 moved W. A large Westerly movement on the 8/10 with 1,100 and 100 was still in the field. 400 East on the 14/10 with 100 E on the 15th, and a further 130 E on the 27/10. On the 28/10, 300 moved East with another 400 were seen in the field. There were 300 still in the field on the 2/11, but then numbers quickly fell away and by the 15/11 only 8 were left. Winter: A flock of 26 were feeding in the field on the 10/12. Per B.H.Log.
(Back in the 1960's the breeding population was estimated at around 70-80 breeding pairs and now probably less than 40 pairs, and many of the former breeding sites are no longer used.  Although good movements are still being recorded larger movements were regularly logged in the 60's & 70's for example 3,600 West on the 9/10 to the 10/10. Also large flocks of 2,000 birds were often recorded in the kale fields on the Head).

 2011: Spring: None recorded.
Autumn: Recorded on 28 dates from 3/10 (5) to 22/11 (12 E) with about 900 bird-days, which also includeds the numbers seen and ringed in Whitbread Hollow. On the 16/10 a party 6 flew W over the Hotel Garden of which 1 showed a large white rump and was considered to be a Mealy (DC & JFC). On the 5/11 236 moved East (147 E over Holywell & 89 E over Birling).
Good numbers were ringed by the BHRG in Whitbread Hollow with their daily maximums of 16/10 200 (52 ringed), 17/10 60 (40 ringed), 21/10 60 (25 ringed), & 12/11 100 (77 ringed). Per B.H.Log.
(In 1972, large numbers of Redpolls were recorded moving over the Headland and several Mealy's were identified.  One Redpoll found dead was sent to the Nat.History Museum and was identified as belonging to the Icelandic race).

2011: A female briefly in Hodcombe before departing around the 14/6, and 1 briefly again on the 19/6 (R.H.C)  Per B.H.Log.

(At least 50 have been logged since 1966 when our first was positively identified with our best year was in 1972 when 13 different birds were claimed from the Headland).

2011: Recorded on 19 dates from 11/4 (2) to 22/11 (3). Almost all the records were from Whitbread Hollow where probably at least 1 pair bred and on the 6/8 2 were trapped of which 1 was a re-trap from 2010, and at least 10 new birds were ringed during the year. Other records: 5/11 1 E & 2 near Belle Tout, 19/11 1 Shooters Bottom. Two were again seen in Whitbread Hollow on the 10/12. Per B.H. Log.
(During the 1960's 8-10 breeding pairs. During October daily numbers would be in the region of 15-40 birds on a day with the daily maximum of 60, and between 1960-1970 a total of 561 were ringed on the Headland averaging at 50 per year).