Reports, with Bird Lists, of our Meetings, Walks and Outings

Pagham Harbour and Medmerry 2017
Saturday COACH trip

Date: Saturday 6 May 2017 at 07:00


The coach left Maidenhead at 7am on Saturday 6th May in windy but dry weather and arrived at Pagham RSPB at about 9am in the sun. The warden gave us a brief talk about the site and where the birds had been seen.

We walked passed the discovery area, hearing Whitethroats, Chaffinch and Blackcaps, to the Ferry Pool hide. Unusually, this hide looks across a main road to marshland and a small area of water beyond, where we could see Spotted Redshank, Ringed Plover and Shelduck.

Walking further along the west side track there were a lot of Whitethroats to be seen in the gorse bushes and also Reed Buntings, Reed Warblers and Sedge Warblers on the opposite side on the reeds. There were Mute Swan nesting and also Coots and Great Crested Grebes in the stream. Walking on towards the Church Norton church yard we also saw Golden Plovers and Grey Plovers out on the muddy marsh areas in their summer plumage which was good to see. It was high tide just as we arrived so by the time we reached the marshy area it was going back out. On the way to the coast there was a colony of Little Terns, Common Terns, Sandwich Terns and Mediterranean Gulls.

We arrived at the coast at lunch time so we did some sea watching whilst eating our lunch but only saw Great Crested Grebe and Swallows flying through on migration. Having walked over two miles we decided to head back towards the centre. On our way back we saw Linnets and several types of Butterflies (Tortoiseshell, Peacock, Green-veined White, Brimstone and Orange Tip).

Arriving back at the centre we indulged in ice-creams and coffee. The more energetic then walked to Sidlesham Quay along the Discovery Trail but saw no additional species.

We were then made aware of an owl in one of the nest boxes in the discovery area and managed to see the head of a Tawny Owl. Some people saw Great White Egret and Osprey flying over.

The total number of birds seen was 79 and 3 heard which is a good result. I think the 23 people who made the trip had a good day birding. Leaving Pagham at 4pm, we arrived back at Maidenhead by 6pm.

Click Here to see some photos from the coach trip

Pagham Harbour, 6/5/2017, sunny

Mute Swan

Canada Goose




Red-breasted Merganser

Red-legged Partridge



Little Egret

Great White Egret

Grey Heron

Little Grebe

Great Crested Grebe

Red Kite

Marsh Harrier

Common Buzzard





Golden Plover

Grey Plover


Little Ringed Plover



Black-tailed Godwit

Bar-tailed Godwit



Spotted Redshank



Little Tern

Sandwich Tern

Common Tern

Black-headed Gull

Mediterranean Gull

Common Gull

Lesser Black-backed Gull

Herring Gull

Great Black-backed Gull

Feral Pigeon

Wood Pigeon

Collared Dove


Tawny Owl



Green Woodpecker (H)





Carrion Crow

Blue Tit

Great Tit


Sand Martin


House Martin

Cetti's Warbler (H)

Chiffchaff (H)


Lesser Whitethroat


Sedge Warbler

Reed Warbler






House Sparrow

Meadow Pipit






Reed Bunting

79 Bird Species + 3 heard

Other Wildlife

Roe Deer



Grass Snake

Peacock Butterfly

Tortoiseshell Butterfly

Comma Butterfly

Red Admiral Butterfly

Green-veined White Butterfly

Brimstone Butterfly

Orange-tip Butterfly

Brown-tail Moth caterpillars


23+2 People

---- Original Programme Information ----

Pagham Harbour

Pagham Harbour LNR is one of the RSPB's newer responsibilities, as management of the reserve was handed over to the RSPB in February 2012. A tidal sheltered bay to the East of Selsey Bill with waders, ducks and geese.

A two mile path runs along the southern shoreline of the harbour to the English Channel at Church Norton, then two miles back via the churchyard.  Parts may be muddy or even waterlogged.


  • Visitor centre
  • Self-service hot drinks machine and light snacks, soup
  • Toilets & disabled toilets
  • Picnic area
  • Binocular hire
  • Guided walks available
  • Three hides and several viewpoints

What might we see? In early May 2014 and early May 2015, the following were reported - Garganey, Spoonbill, Swift, Spotted Flycatcher, Black, Sandwich, Common and Little Terns, Reed, Sedge and Willow Warbler, Whitethroats and Lesser Whitethroat, Blackcap, Nightingale, Corn Bunting, Yellowhammer, Cuckoo, Avocet, Common and Green Sandpiper, Bar-Tailed Godwit, Knot, Grey Plover, Whimbrel, Turnstone, Dunlin, Black Winged Stilt, Little Stint, Sanderling, Red-necked Phalarope, Lapwing, Whinchat, Wheatear, butterflies, dragonflies. Although many of the waders will have departed for their breeding grounds, those that remain should be in their summer plumage.

Click here for details of RSPB Pagham Harbour LNR

Medmerry from the airMedmerry image from the Environment Agency

Medmerry is a new RSPB-managed reserve (Autumn 2014) to the west of Selsey Bill, a mile from Pagham Harbour visitor centre.  It consists of new mudflats, saltmarsh, tidal lagoons, beach and grassland. It was created 2011-2013 by the £28m construction of inland flood defences then the deliberate breaching of the old defences.  Wildlife is rapidly colonising the new habitats, but nobody anticipated the school of 50+ sharks that swam into the reserve's shallow lagoon in July 2015.


  • No toilets, food, etc..
  • There are six miles of footpaths, some along the top of the bund.
  • Beach access.
  • The situation is fluid, Pagham Harbour Visitor Centre will have the latest information.

Click here for details of RSPB Medmerry

Coach trip details -

  • Full payment of £20.00 is required on booking. For under 16s the full cost is only £10.00. All money will be refunded if the trip is cancelled.
  • For bookings and any other details, email Helen Pearson , or call Helen on 01628 639648 and leave a voicemail, or see Helen at a meeting. Please book at least one week in advance, preferably much earlier.
  • The coach leaves promptly at 7.00 am from the lay-by in front of the entrance to Braywick Park (Braywick Sports Ground), Braywick Road, Maidenhead, SL6 1DX. There is a free car park inside the park. Please arrive in good time.
  • Consider bringing a packed lunch and any drinks or snacks that you may require.
  • This coach trip involves a journey time of about two hours each way. During the journey, comfort stops will be made if possible.
  • The coach has room for large items such as telescopes, tripods, hampers and camera bags.