Previous Bird News

HAMPSHIRE SUMMARY FOR MARCH 2019

Bittern by Richard Jacobs - March 4th, Blashford Lakes
Bittern by Richard Jacobs – March 4th, Blashford Lakes

BLASHFORD LAKES AND THE AVON VALLEY

Lingering winter visitors included the Ferruginous Duck on Kingfisher Lake (8/3) and Bittern on Ivy Lake (until 27/3). On Ibsley Water there was the Ring-billed Gull (until 27/3), Caspian Gull (16/3), Yellow-legged Gull (max. 4), Black-necked Grebe (until 10/3) and up to three Water Pipits. The first spring migrants were a Little Ringed Plover and eight Sand Martins (both 3/3), while the county’s first House Martin of the year dropped in on 20/3, followed by a Garganey (22/3). Also notable on Ibsley Water was a Kittiwake (27/3-29/3), Marsh Harrier (8/3, 13/3) and monthly maxima of 24 Goldeneye and 29 Goosander. Elsewhere in the Avon Valley, the Bewick’s Swan was at Harbridge (until 11/3), plus two Great White Egrets (10/3-12/3). Ospreys were at Breamore and Ringwood (both 31/3).

HILL HEAD TO HAMBLE

Scarcities at Titchfield Haven included Cattle Egret (18/3, 31/3), Spoonbill (1-2, 24/3-30/3) and two Spotted Redshanks (31/3). A drake Garganey was on the Posbrook Floods (from 22/3). Water Pipits along the canal path peaked at 20. Commoner spring migrants included Sand Martin (from 4/3) Swallow (from 8/3), House Martin (20, 31/3), Willow Warbler (from 8/3) and Little Ringed Plover (2, 29/3). Reports from Hill Head included Red-throated Diver (8/3), Fulmar (3, 16/3), Kittiwake (5, 16/3) and Little Gull (30/3), while a Merlin flew over (16/3).

LANGSTONE HARBOUR AND HAYLING ISLAND

Reports from Farlington Marshes included one or two Spoonbills throughout, Whimbrel (2/3, 27/3), Jack Snipe (1-2, 26/3-27/3), Spotted Redshank (26/3-30/3), Merlin (16/3) and Water Pipit (30/3). A Pale-bellied Brent Goose was seen twice (2/3, 8/3) and a Black Brant once (28/3). Black-necked Grebes in Langstone Harbour peaked at 12. On Hayling Island, there were two Slavonian Grebes off Sandy Point (16/3) and Great Skua off Sinah Common (23/3). A Black-throated Diver was in Chichester Harbour (18/3-19/3). Hampshire’s first Redstarts of the spring were at Sandy Point and Fort Cumberland (both 31/3). A Black Redstart continued to overwinter at Fort Cumberland, with another at Sandy Point on 31/3.

LYMINGTON TO MILFORD-ON-SEA

Up to eight Spoonbills continued to roam the Lymington-Keyhaven marshes throughout the month. The drake Scaup continued on Normandy Lagoon, while a drake Garganey was on Fishtail Lagoon (23/3-24/3). A single Slavonian Grebe was offshore (9/3-11/3, 17/3). Waders included Little Ringed Plover (2, 24/3), Whimbrel (25/3), Ruff (max. 9) and Spotted Redshank (max. 2). Other species included a Little Gull (8/3, 22/3) and two Water Pipits (23/3). Reports from Milford-on-Sea included Great Northern Diver (16/3), Kittiwake (3, 12/3) and Hampshire’s first Common Tern of the year (31/3). Two White-fronted Geese flew over Sturt Pond (31/3).

ELSEWHERE

Most welcome for Hampshire listers was a Hooded Crow on Portsdown Hill (8/3-17/3). A Glossy Ibis flew over Fareham (11/3), followed by one at Fishlake Meadows (from 24/3). Also at Fishlake were two Cranes flying over (9/3), up to two Great White Egrets, Osprey (9/3, 24/3), a pair of Garganey (from 30/3) and Hampshire’s first Sedge Warbler of the year (24/3). The two Cranes were also seen flying over Black Gutter Bottom (9/3), while a single was then over North Baddesley (29/3). A White Stork was in Romsey (24/3-25/3), then seen flying over Waterlooville (25/3). Up to five Cattle Egrets remained at Warblington (to 23/3), while further Great White Egrets were seen at Testwood Lakes (7/3) and Moorcourt (8/3, 21/3). A Bittern was seen once at Testwood (1/3). An early Montagu’s Harrier flew over Acres Down (31/3), while Hen Harriers were at Trigpoint Hill (17/3), Itchen Stoke (24/3) and Micheldever (24/3). A drake Garganey was at Edenbrook Country Park (from 24/3). The Long-tailed Duck remained at Weston Shore (until 28/3).

Tom Jordan