A morning walk at Church Norton, Friday 24th September 2021. Leader Jim Bagley

‘Birds on the move’ – with wildfowl, seabirds and hedgerow species to be seen on the mud flats, shoreline and farmland.

Jim welcomed  a large group of us to St Wilfrid’s Church car park at Church Norton by apologising that last night had been a clear one so we may not see as many migrant birds as if it had been a cloudy night. However…

Within seconds we had spotted a sparrowhawk overhead.  As we made our way to Pagham Harbour, and with the aid of binoculars, we saw  plenty of wading birds, (full list below) a couple of swallows that flew above us, and a large colony of little egrets with a couple of grey heron interlopers in their midst.    A curlew serenaded us with its bubbling song as it flew along the tideline.  On the shingle we found two unexpected garden escapes – a fig tree and pampas grass.  Other plants are listed below.

Jim recommended a visit to the church at the end of the walk to see its wildlife-themed stained-glass windows, which I did and was rewarded with a green woodpecker calling as it flew between the churchyard trees, my last sighting of the day, which I have added to the list that Jenny so comprehensively compiled on the day. Thank you, Jenny!

The late summer sun gave us a beautiful morning.  As somebody said, how lucky we are to live in such diverse and lovely countryside.  And how nice to share it with such a friendly and knowledgeable group of people.
Julia Macfarlane

Birds: Woodpigeon, Sparrowhawk, Swallow, Oystercatcher, Curlew, Redshank, Swans, Grey Plover, Willowwarbler (or chiffchaff), Cormorant, Blackheaded Gulls, Dunlin, Little Egrets, Robin, Sparrow, Heron, Common tern, Buzzard, Chaffinch

Plants & Other Wildlife: Elm trees, Sea aster, Perennial sow-thistle, Glasswort, Sea purslane, Fig tree, Pampas grass, Wild rose, Sea kale, Ploughman’s spikenard, Canadian fleabane, White bryony, Vipers bugloss, Hawkbit, Wild carrot, Blackberry/ brambles, Valerian, Common Reed (Phragmites), Gorse, Wild radish – white and yellow flowered, Chamomile, Scarlet pimpernel, Great bindweed, Lesser bindweed, Sea bindweed, Sorrel, Plantain, Greater willowherb, Milk thistle, Pineapple weed, Ragwort

Insects: Robin’s pincushion, Speckled wood butterfly, Red Admiral, Common darter dragonfly


What a fine day!

Robin's Pincushion - a wasp gall on a rose

A Little Egret waiting for lunch

A fig tree

Chichester, West Sussex

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