Approximately 25 members of Ferring Conservation Group braved a bright but chilly December morning to take a walk along the beach from Sea Lane, Ferring, towards Goring. To keep us on our toes Tricia Hall set us a 5 star challenge with a list of wading birds and seaweed to find and identify. Jane Hayman, FCG’s Publicity Officer, reports ‘our members rose to the challenge and by the time we reached our destination most had identified at least 4 species of wading birds and 4 types of seaweed’.
Tricia explained that although it resembles a plant, seaweed is actually a type of complex algae. Seaweed algae builds itself into multi-cellular forms that can withstand the deep waters of the ocean. Spiral wrack, Bladder wrack, Serrated wrack and Egg or Knotted wrack were among the seaweeds identified.
With the aid of field glasses and telescopes our group were able to spot 4 types of wading birds in the form of Dunlins, Turnstones, Ringed Plovers and Sanderlings. The Sanderling is a small, plump, energetic wading bird. It has a short straight black bill and medium length black legs. It is pale grey above and white underneath, and there is a black mark at its shoulder where the folded wing meets the body. It does not breed in the UK, but is a winter visitor and passage migrant in spring and autumn.
Our walk concluded with hot drinks etc. at a sea front café where the hardy bunch chose the outside option to enjoy the winter sunshine.
The Ferring Neighbourhood Plan Referendum which took place on 10 December returned an overwhelming 82.66% YES vote in favour of the plan, and the 3 Community Right to Build Orders (CRTBOs) were also passed with well over 70% in favour of these. We understand that the CRTBOs were the first in the country to be approved. There was a strong turn out by residents of Ferring.
The YES vote for the 3 CRTBOs was as follows:
new Community Centre/ Village Hall site – 78.8%
allotment site behind Henty Arms – 75.8%
Village Hall site – 71.1%
This was an excellent result for the village of Ferring and its residents, and we should all be very grateful to Ferring Parish Council for all their hard work, ably led by Chairman Carole Robertson, as well as others who have worked on the plan. We should also thank all those Ferring people who voted for it.
We are organising two guided walks in December and January – details are as follows: (Do bring binoculars and wear suitable clothing for the time of year)
1. Winter Weeds and Waders – Thursday 11 December – meet at bottom of Sea Lane, Ferring at 10am for a walk along the beach to see the various coastal birds and identify the seaweeds washed up. Stop off halfway at Sea Lane cafe at Goring for a drink/ refreshments before returning the same way to Ferring.
2. Raptors and Downland Birds at Burpham (nr Arundel) – Tuesday 13 January – meet at 10am at Peppering High Barn, Peppering Lane (just north of Burpham village). This is an excellent location to see various birds of prey and other birds, including red kite, buzzards, peregrine falcons etc. Limited car parking, so car share if possible.