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Sussex Scrapbook ~ Wildlife walks throughout the year
Green Man
Sunday 2nd January 2011
Pulborough - Parham - Kithurst Hill - Wepham Down - The Burgh - Amberley
11.5 miles

No sooner had we reached the River Arun when a Barn owl appeared. It was hunting in its normal territory, along and behind the far bank of the river. As we turned to look across the brooks, all of the Lapwing, Teal and Wigeon took to the skies. This usually means that a bird of prey is around and sure enough we spotted a female Peregrine taking several huge swoops at the terrified flock. She had no luck that we could see and so shot back to her favourite roosting spot in a willow at the Hanger. On reaching there ten minutes later we came across several people watching her too. She was back out on the brooks eating a newly-caught Teal. A crow was bravely attempting to steal her dinner, so as we watched, she brought it back, headless, to her perch and sat there devouring it in front of us. It all got a bit macabre actually, as eventually the duck.. kind of... er... unravelled(!) and swung about three feet below the perch (no pictures, you'll be pleased to hear).
Nature in the raw, eh!

Pulborough Church against some unwanted black clouds.

This bank of dark cloud looked as if it was going to cover us entirely, but it went the other way and left us with bright sunshine all day instead.
What a result!

A Mute Swan and a Grey Heron share air-space over the North Brooks.

Looking over Little hanger Hide to the North Brooks and Pulborough village.

Scope view of one of the "Ladies that lunch".

Snipe on the South Brooks

Candlesnuff Fungus

There seems to be mistletoe everywhere at Parham Estate: in the trees, on the paths and even draped over the footpath signs.

Happy pigs at Rackham.

Gill surveys the view from Kithurst Hill.
There was still a light frost on the top of the hill but we were hot from a fast climb. That Christmas weight is starting to come off!

Starling. One of our most exotic bird species. Take a close look at their colours when you get the chance, they're amazing!
They can make any noise under the sun too. Who needs parrots?

Wepham Down

A beautiful spot for tea. Wepham Down at Golden Hour.