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Pagham Harbour Winter

Pagham Harbour Winter
Photo copyright Sarah Hughes

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Each season brings a different experience at RSPB Pagham Harbour. In spring, the air is filled with birdsong as they compete to establish territories and attract a mate. In summer, look out for young birds making their first venture into the outside world. Autumn brings large movements of migrating birds - some heading south to a warmer climate, others seeking refuge in the UK from the cold Arctic winter. In winter, look out for large flocks of birds gathering to feed, or flying at dusk to form large roosts to keep warm.

Winter is the busiest time across the Harbour with up to 20,000 birds feeding and roosting across the reserve. Large numbers of dark-bellied brent geese, lapwings and black-tailed godwits use the harbour or surrounding fields, with a supporting cast that includes grey and golden plovers, lapwings and dunlins. We sometimes get visits from common and grey seals which can be seen basking on the islands, sleeping off a heavy meal. Slavonian grebes are a speciality offshore, and red-breasted mergansers sail into the harbour.

Brent goose - dark-bellied form Grey plover - winter plumage Red-breasted merganser - male Slavonian grebe - breeding plumage
Brent goose Grey plover Red-breasted merganser Slavonian grebe

 

Coastal Change Films

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