• David Campbell

Down the beach...

I'm very fortunate to have the English Channel just around the corner from my base in Worthing. This has proved a real blessing during the current restrictions. Being the middle of winter, migration is at a fairly low ebb but there is usually a good variety of birds to be seen. If fish are shoaling offshore, even better. It's easy to tell when this is happening as the fishing boats, the Northern Gannets and the gulls zero in from all directions.

Recent days have seen hundreds of auks moving offshore. Most have been flying through the haze just below the horizon but those passing a little closer have all turned out to be Razorbills. Red-throated Divers and Great Crested Grebes have been a common sight alongside up to 30 Red-breasted Mergansers. The latter species can be found with ease here between October and April.

Together with the Northern Gannets, 'shoal days' have also tempted a few Black-legged Kittiwakes to within view of my shelter. It pays to keep an eye close to shore, too, as occasionally a Mediterranean Gull or a flock of waders, such as Common Ringed Plover or Sanderling, slip through.

adult Mediterranean Gull