Lesser Florican - August 2023

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Wednesday 12 December 2018

Splash Point & Lower Cuckmere 12/12/18

Late news for yesterday was a first-winter male Black Redstart at Splash Point, and a Jack Snipe not too far away.

Today looked promising and so I got down Splash Point fairly early and enjoyed my first seawatch for some time. Although slow going the following were seen flying east between 08.05-09.35:

Brent Geese - 11
Common Scoter - 5 plus 8 still offshore
Red-throated Diver - 30
Auk sp - 7
Kittiwake - 5
Shelduck - 4
Guillemot - 5
Razorbill - 10
Wigeon - 2
Great Crested Grebe - 4

Whilst seawatching it was apparent there were many Gulls flying through, and whilst enjoying a latte and cake up at South Hill Barn, I saw hundreds of large Gulls flying over Seaford and diving straight into the Cuckmere. This was very enticing and I quickly finished my treats and surged down where I was greeted with the fields full of Gulls, and over the following four hours I estimated over 6000 Gulls being present. All throughout this session large flocks were coming down the valley and joining the already assembled flocks. As great as this was, the strong light, cold wind and density of birds made viewing extremely difficult and the birds were very mobile.

Eventually I managed these totals:

Caspian Gull - 8 (1w, 2w, 3w & 5 adults/near adults). Originally I had thought 9 but the 1w was the same bird despite looking different in the field.
Yellow-legged Gull - ca. 15 (all adults bar one 2w)
Argentatus Herring Gull - ca. 50
Lesser Black-backed Gull - ca, 2000
Great Black-backed Gull - ca. 4000

Jack Snipe

Brent Geese passing
Splash Point

first-winter Caspian Gull

Adult/nr adult Caspian Gull

Adult (green-ringed) Caspian Gull
(assumed German origin)

Adult Caspian Gull

Near-adult Caspian Gull

A strange individual bearing a
yellow ring so presumably from Germany
or Poland. However it just doesn't look like
a Caspian Gull.