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Shoreham Town Wildlife Reports (January to May 2005)
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Shoreham Beach Weather provided by Softwair Publishing




The low lying town of Shoreham-by-Sea is built on level land almost entirely below 7.7 metres (25 feet) above sea level (Ordnance Datum, 3.05 metres above Chart Datum). Since World War II houses have been built on slightly higher ground up to 15 metres (50 feet) above sea level. The sea facing slope of the downs has been developed with residential housing, but at a height of about 30 metres (100 feet) the development has stopped and the downs in the north remain as farmland. The town is therefore on the low lying plain.

Wildlife Reports            Summer 2005

Link to Town & Gardens 2006

May to December 2005

31 December 2005
23 different birds were spotted in the back garden of 40 The Drive (near Buckingham Park), (TQ  219 063), during the weekly plus visits in 2005. The numbers of birds are misleading because it is usually the same birds visiting on different days. The most prevalent birds were Jackdawswith 284 recorded on 48 different occasions. Other birds often seen included Greenfinches 157, Blackbirds 76, Blue Tits 75, Starlings 67, Collared Doves 52 and House Sparrows 51. New birds added were  Fieldfares, Blackcaps and a Jay. The absentee this year was the Goldcrest, and both Chaffinches and Song Thrushes were down in numbers. 
Garden Bird Database 2005

Garden Bird List 2004
Garden Bird List 2004 Spreadsheet

25 December 2005
Christmas Day
Under a clear blue sky the air temperature reached 7.7 ºC at 2:09 pm
Shoreham Weather Reports

The first bird seen during the day was a Pied Wagtail in Corbyn Crescent, Shoreham. 

22 December 2005
A new record 14 species of birds were seen in a north Shoreham garden in one hour, a dozen of them within the first twenty minutes. They were in order of first seen: Jackdaws (8), Greenfinches (8), Blackbirds (2), Wood Pigeon (1), Collared Doves (4), Blue Tits (5), Robin (1), Wren (1), House Sparrows (4), Starling (1), Great Tits (2), Dunnocks (3), Magpies (2), and finally a Herring Gull as I was just about to leave. Food was there to attract the birds.
Garden Bird Database 2005

17 December 2005
The number of corvids in the tall trees in the central reservation of The Drive, Shoreham, were now counted over fifty and there were at least a dozen Crows amongst the Jackdaws. Also, at the same time in the late afternoon a dozen or so Rooks perched at the top of a Fir Tree just a handful of houses north in The Drive, Shoreham. Again, thirty minutes later before dusk, all these birds had flown off elsewhere and none could be seen amongst the bare branches. 

16 December 2005
The number of corvids in the tall trees in the central reservation of The Drive, Shoreham, were counted up to 30 and all were probably Jackdaws and there could have been more. This is twice as many as normal. Later (3:50 pm) when I went to count them just before dusk, they had all disappeared. A large flock of approximately 2500 Starlings flew over from west to east followed by another flock at the top of The Drive of about 250 where two Crows were seen on the grass road island. 

5 December 2005
The black corvids in a Fir Tree in Ship Street, central Shoreham are probably Crows, but it was difficult to be sure in the murky light as dusk was approaching. 

4 December 2005
The noisy Rooks are again congregating at the top of a Fir Tree in The Drive, Shoreham. A Jay landed on the roof of a house on the south side of Upper Shoreham Road immediately south of Buckingham Park.On the Sweet Chestnut and the Oaks in Buckingham Park, some brown leaves still remained, but most of the deciduous trees were now bare. 

2 December 2005
The population of Jackdaws that roost in the tall trees in the central reservation of The Drive, Shoreham, are counted and established definitely at 13 birds. 

30 November 2005
                                     Elm Trees in Rosslyn Avenue, Shoreham 

23 November 2005
A Goldfinch on the metal barriers by Furnitureland near the Hamm in Shoreham town seemed to be on its own which seems unusual for this bird which is seen in small chirms. 

21 November 2005
One Wren was making a persistent and strident statement from a bush at the top of The Drive, Shoreham. I first thought was the alarm call of this small bird, but the call was too prolonged to make this likely? 

19 November 2005
A butterfly was seen amongst the railway track vegetation between Southwick and Shoreham railway station and this was probably a Red Admiral.

Adur Butterfly List 2005

It was now the turn of the Dunnock to be recorded for the first time in the garden this autumn. At young Magpie visited the bird table for stale cheese.
Garden Bird Database 2005

18 November 2004
Venue: Marlipins Museum
           High Street, Shoreham-by-Sea
Time:12.30 pm to 1.30 pm
Speaker: Jon Stokes
(Tree Council

  Tree Warden Scheme (Link)
  Adur Leaves and Trees
  Adur Council Tree Page

14 November 2005
A Robin was seen for the second time this autumn in a Shoreham garden near Buckingham Park.  It was extremely wary and it was probably wise as a Sparrowhawk had appeared from nowhere earlier, flying straight at a low trajectory and smoothly negotiating the northern fence like a hump back bridge before causing commotion amongst the Jackdaws in the tall trees. The Sparrowhawk was seen again later on a return flight over the gardens to the east. The Goldfinches were absent. I would think it doubtful whether they would have survived with a Sparrowhawk in the vicinity. 

13 November 2005
A flock of about 250 Starlings flew in a south-easterly direction in a straight convential formation over Buckingham Park, Shoreham, when suddenly the flock verred off in a spiral cornscrewed formation. A dark bird seemed to drop like a Peregrine from a greater height and this is what probably caused the commotion. 
Two Goldfinches paid a rare visit to a sunflower seed feeder in a Shoreham garden near Buckingham Park. They have been seen once before in the garden earlier in the year and in the vicinity on a handful of occasions. There has also been reports of an autumn influx to Sussex of this attractive finch. They stayed on the feeder for at least fifteen minutes feeding on and off during this time. This continuous feeding is not undertaken by other birds except for one Wood Pigeon: Greenfinches make prolonged visits and Blue Tits making fleeting visits.
Garden Bird Database 2005

3 November 2005

Sulphur Tuft, Hypholoma fasciculare, is such a common species of fungus that it only just about gets a mention. In these photographs of a clump on a tree stump in Windlesham Gardens, Shoreham, the stem ring can be clearly seen. 
Adur Sulphur Tufts

1 November 2005
A Red Admiral Butterfly was seen a minute after I left home in Dolphin Road, Shoreham. There were just two Goldfinches seen in the children's playground on Middle Road Recreation Ground. 

30 October 2005
On the long grass verge island in The Drive, Shoreham, outside number 40, there was a smallish Dryad's Saddle (toadstool) amongst the grass with a large (about 15 cm) cap that had become inverted. There was probably a root underneath as this large fungus usually grows on wood, usually found on tree stumps of felled trees or rotten logs. 

28 October 2005

Grey Squirrels were calling raucously from both the evergreen and the deciduous trees in the twitten from Ravensbourne Avenue to Buckingham Park in north Shoreham. At least four them put on a show with a varied (about four) selection of calls which were quite different from each other. 

17 October 2005
Consternation or was in conversation amongst a half a dozen the Crows on the chimney tops in The Drive, Shoreham, which made them sound more like raucous Rooks

14 October 2005

There were over a dozen large Agaricus mushrooms growing under a ? tree in Southdown Road, Shoreham. They looked edible. The cap diameters of two of the opened up mushrooms were measured at 60 mm and 70 mm. These are probably the edible Field Mushroom, Agaricus campestris.
Shoreham Fungi 2005

13 October 2005
A Grey Squirrel ran up a tree in the twitten from Ravensbourne Avenue to Buckingham Park in north Shoreham with a mouth full of leaves collected from the litter on the ground. 

11 October 2005
The Smooth Newts, Triturus vulgaris, that hatched in my pond near Mill Hill are now leaving the pond in droves.

9 October 2005
A half a dozen fresh Shaggy Parasol Mushrooms, Macrolepiota rhacodes, were growing amongst a pile of leaves in the twitten between Corbyn Crescent and Adelaide Square, Shoreham, on the edge of the Middle Road allotments.
Shoreham Fungi 2005

3 October 2005
A colourful Jay flew out of the taller trees at the top of Buckingham Park and flew over a large expanse of grass (over a football pitch) in the direction of the copse and twitten to Ravensbourne Avenue.

Trees in Buckingham Park

2 October 2005
A Water Shrew, Neomys fodiens, was seen underneath a large piece of boarding on the path on the southern bank of the Slonk Hill Cutting where it winds its way through vegetation at the western end. I am not familiar with shrews: this one was 50% larger than a House Mouse and it had a white rim that appeared like the edge of a skirt around its dark grey-black furry coat. It moved to and fro about five seconds before disappearing. This is a partially protected species. It is found in area where Slow Worms have been discovered before. This is the first time I have identified this shrew
The photograph was very poor but it does seem to indicate a white underside. This fits the description for a Water Shrew
Mammal Society Factsheet on the Water Shrew

A small eusocial species of solitary bee, probably Lasioglossum calceatum, was spotted on the Slonk Hill Cutting.
Adur Solitary Bees
A pristine and definite Brown Argus Butterfly that was spotted on a flower in a garden near Buckingham Park, Shoreham was a surprise. It quickly fluttered a away and disappeared.
Adur Butterfly & Large Moth List 2005

29 September 2005

Polypody (? not checked)

Greenery in the flint wall of St. Julian's Church, Kington Buci

25 September 2005
Large White ButterflyAfter the morning (9:30 am) rain squalls the weather cleared for an overcast afternoon but it always looked like rain and I had already been soaked earlier so I do not venture out of the urban area. There were a handful of conspicuous Large White Butterflies in the residential part of Shoreham, a Red Admiral flying rapidly northwards over Dolphin Road in Shoreham town. Fluttering around the top of the pine trees in the twitten from Ravensbourne Avenue to Buckingham Park in north Shoreham there was a small (the size of a Small Heath) orange or brown butterfly (possibly a moth?) that was not identified.  This was probably a male 2026 Vapourer Moth, Orgyia antiqua. (ID not confirmed, just a best guess.)

18 September 2005
At least two Rooks were positively seen on a roof top in The Drive, Shoreham, and they visited the Rookery of earlier in the year. 

Cypress at Southlands Hospital (Eastern Entrance)

September 2005

The Annual Wall Rocket, Diplotaxis muralis, was been growing through a gap in the tarmac in Corbyn Crescent, Shoreham. This is a frequent plant and there were clumps in Dolphin Road as well. 

11 September 2005
A young Fox ran across Gordon Road, about the midway point into the side passge of a house at around 11:00 pm.

8 September 2005
The Starling flocks have returned for the colder months although the temperature rose to 23.8 ºC. On top of the houses in Dolphin Road that runs parallel with the railway line in east Shoreham, there was about 20* Starlings per chimney stack on eleven stacks and about another 20 or so on the tiles, which equals a flock of 20 x 12 = 240. Often two flocks of this size join together in choosing roosting or resting places. (*counted on one chimney stack)

7 September 2005
A young Fox ran across Middle Road, from the allotments at the eastern end into the Kingston Buci (not in Kingston Buci) school grounds at around 11:00 pm

6 September 2005
Renewal Holly growths were seen growing in another tree in the twitten to Buckingham Park from Ravensbourne Avenue, Shoreham. Adur Council had previously chopped the Holly tree down. It does look like Adur Parks & Gardens have rectified their original error. 
Report of the Holly Tree Removal

31 August 2005
There was a flock of an estimated 350 to 400 Starlings on the grassy area of Church Green, next to Kingston Buci, in the largely residential area of east Shoreham. 

28 August 2005
A colourful Jay flew into the trees in the twitten to Buckingham Park from Ravensbourne Avenue, Shoreham. These trees contain an Evergreen Oak and a Jay has been seen there before, but I do not have record for this particular area since March
The Garden Orb Spiders, Araneus diadematus, were spinning their deadly webs everywhere as they do in the autumn. Prey included grasshoppers and moths
Adur Spiders

2 August 2005
The hirundines over the Southlands Hospital waste land included both Swallows and House Martins.

31 July 2005
There were adult Common Frogs and Froglets in my very small pond in my front garden in Corbyn Crescent, Shoreham. The Froglets could have hatched from about a dozen tadpoles introduced in the last two years, or they could have migrated from other garden ponds? 

29 July 2005
A brown butterfly fluttering in the Gentle Breeze (Force 3) in Williams Road, a residential part of Shoreham, turned out to be a Wall Brown Butterfly

22 July 2005
The Dryad's Saddle, Polyporus squamosus has grown again in the front verge in Mill Hill Road. One large mushroom is already deteriorating, although one of them seems intact. 
Shoreham Fungi Page

Common Blue Butterflies were in flight on the Slonk Hill Cutting (southern bank).
Butterfly List for the Day

17 July 2005
Thirty to forty Swallows (? possibly House Martins) swooped around the trees in the Southlands Hospital wasteland.

Butterflies were very common (500+ in an hour) but at least half of them were skippers which appear a bit like moths to the casual rambler. Fifteen species of butterfly and skipper were seen on the Slonk Hill Cutting (southern bank) which is the largest variety of species seen in a single day this year so far. The only point of note was all these species were actually seen in the urban area of Shoreham, and no extra species were added to the list by visiting the downs on a warm afternoon. 
Butterfly List for the Day

14 July 2005
In the early evening the thirty Swallows were now flying over Eastern Avenue, Shoreham, about 300 metres east of St. Giles Close. 

12 July 2005
Now there were between 30 and 40 Swallows swooping low over St. Giles Close, south of Southlands Hospital.

11 July 2005
Over a dozen (probably nearer twenty) Swifts swooped low and glided over the Hamm Road Allotments, Shoreham town. 
The air temperature attained 27.6 ºC.

10 July 2005
As the temperature hit 27.2° C, five species of butterfly visited a Shoreham garden, all three species of whites, Large White, Small White and Green-veined White were confirmed, plus a Meadow Brown and a Red Admiral.
A short walk to the top of the Drive and along the Slonk Hill Cutting produced 23+ (counted) Small/Essex Skippers, but no Large Skippers, a partly counted and estimated 45+ Meadow Browns, and partly counted and estimated 44+ Gatekeepers, 5+ whites, probably all Green-veined Whites (as one was confirmed). a count of 7+ Marbled Whites, plus an estimated 10+ Ringlet Butterflies.
There was at least 15, probably many more 6-spotted Burnet Moths.
Nine species of butterfly within the Shoreham town boundaries without visiting the Adur Levels or the Downs.

There was a small black and yellow hoverfly Chrysotoxum bicinctum on the Slonk Hill Cutting (south). 

Ringlet Butterfly
Ringlet Butterfly

9 July 2005
A female Broad-bodied Chaser (dragonfly) is discovered emerging from a garden pond south of Mill Hill in Shoreham. 

7 July 2005
Only the second Ringlet Butterfly positively recorded on the Adur Nature Notes pages was discovered on the Slonk Hill Cutting (southern bank) and spotted amongst the long grass and faded Spotted Orchids on a day that was too breezy (Force 5) for butterflies.

Previous Record of a Ringlet
Adur Butterfly & Large Moth List 2005
Adur Butterfly Flight Times
Adur Flies

22 June 2005
There were a handful of Swifts performing acrobatics over the disused grounds west of Southlands Hospital. (At least they had forked tails, possibly Swallows?)

14 June 2005
The black and white bird I did not recognise immediately in the twitten between Ravensbourne Avenue and Buckingham Park, and it took me twenty seconds or so to realise this was a juvenile Great Spotted Woodpecker
Another bird on the roof of 15 Ravensbourne Avenue was making such a racket with a variety of calls that it attracted my attention. Unfortunately, I left my binoculars at home and I could not instantly identify it from a repertoire of calls that is unequalled in my experience. The bird was light coloured with a black head and was about the size of a Starling or smaller. Its beak may have been longer than most garden birds. This may have been a Blackcap. The calls were checked on the Collins Field Guide "Bird Songs & Calls" CD-ROM. It seems possible that it was a Blackcap, but it was not confirmed. The song seemed more distinct and clearer than on the audio CD-ROM.

13 June 2005

Pyramidal Orchid Bee Orchid Spotted Orchid

Orchids in Shoreham

Bee Orchids were growing tall in the long grass verges with Red Clover at the junction of Mill Hill Road (leads to Mill Hill) and Mill Hill Close.

Original Report by Betty Bishop

12 June 2005
There were two adult Slow Worms underneath a piece of cardboard on the wild ground, mostly Hawthorn, between the A27 road embankment and the houses north of Buckingham Park. 

Full Report

Bee Orchids were flowering in Mill Hill Road (leads to Mill Hill) on the east side verges. 

Report by Betty Bishop

10 June 2005
A young Fox scampered across the busy Ham Road in the centre of Shoreham town, mobbed by two Herring Gulls in broad daylight (5:45 pm) and went into the gardens of the Guildborne House apartments, next to the Old Schoolhouse (near the Surry Street junction).

8 June 2005
A pair of Goldfinches were a colourful addition to Gordon Road, Shoreham.

7 June 2005
Two species of butterfly made their first appearance as the sun came out: Small Blue Butterflies (18+) and Large Skippers (4+) were recorded firstly on the south bank of the Slonk Hill Cutting.
This area produced the first 24-spot Ladybird on these Nature Notes, but it has probably been overlooked before because of its small size. 
At the top of The Drive, Shoreham, Marmalade Flies and other hoverflies were noticed in numbers in excess of twenty on one bush.
Adur Butterflies: First Dates
Adur Skippers
Adur Butterfly & Large Moth List 2005
Adur Ladybirds

2 June 2005
Looking even more splendidly colourful than even the illustrations in the books, it looks like there the two Bee-eaters were a pair as they flew around together and obliging settled in a tree near the path at the back of the west side gardens of Ravens Road, central Shoreham, (hereafter to be known as Bee-eater Twitten). They perched on branches high up in the tree and could be seen very clearly, but apparently not nearly close enough for a massive 600 mm camera lens. not mine, but with the contingent of birders. The breast of the bird looked like the "teal" colour on the Windows (computer program) menu. Through the scope one bird was seen to be surrounded by a couple of dozen small midges. 
Birds of Sussex
in Shoreham

Photograph by 
© Garry Bagnell

Bagnell's Bird List 
(Web Site)

1 June 2005
From 11.30 am and certainly still in the area at 4.15 pm were two Bee-eaters, Merops apiaster, were seen in Shoreham in the area of Buckingham Road/Windlesham Road.

Report by John Hobson on on the Sussex Ornithological Society News

The Bee-eater is a rare but annual visitor to Britain, mainly to southern counties. It has even nested. A very difficult bird to see however, due to its habit of not staying long in any one place. Occasionally groups of more than one bird occur.
Birdguides entry
The Bee-eater has a limited communal breeding system, breeding as pairs, but helped out by other Bee-eaters.

This is the first known record for Shoreham.
Sussex Ornithological Society Bee-eater records.

27 May 2005
The Rooks are gone from the Rookery in The Drive, Shoreham. They could have left a week or more ago as I failed to make a note. A Holly Blue Butterfly was noted in a front garden on the opposite side (east) of the rod to the Rookery.
A handful each of Speckled Wood Butterflies, Large Red Damselflies, Andrena bees and the pretty hoverfly Leucozona lucorum were seen in the shady area at the top of The Drive, Shoreham. 
The most unexpected and surprising discovery of my day was a slightly faded, but intact, Red Admiral Butterfly in the twitten between Adelaide Square and Corbyn Crescent, Shoreham.
An Adonis Blue Butterfly fluttered over the Dovecote Bank.
Butterfly & Moth Report

22 May 2005
Dove's-foot Cranes-bill, Geranium molle, was noted in a patch of over fifty flowers, possibly many more, on the verges in Crown Road south of Southland's Hospital. 
Shoreham Garden Report

11 May 2005
A pair of Goldfincheswere seen in a front garden in Park Avenue, Shoreham on the western side half way along the road. These house have medium-sized gardens. 

1 May 2005
Common Mouse-ear and Germander Speedwell were noticed in the grass verges. These small plants are usually thought of as weeds. 

Dovecote Bank
Slonk Hill South
Coastal Link Cyclepath

Shoreham Town Wildlife Reports (January to May 2005)

Town & Gardens 2004

Adur Nature Notes 2005:   Index Page

Adur Valley
Adur Nature Notes 2005