Despite a relatively calm and pleasant start to the month, there was little movement and almost no discernable change in the numbers and variety of birds from day to day. Up to 70 Skylarks were present every day, but other noteworthy passerines were minimal: a Meadow Pipit and a Song Thrush on the 3rd, a Robin on the 7th and a single Common Redpoll spending the week with the Twite flock at Kirbest. A couple of Peregrines were seen early in the week, up to three Grey Herons were around, a Water Rail was at Ancum Loch on the 7th, and Little Grebes were singing on territory there and on Brides Loch. Wader counts remained much the same, although Redshanks reached a peak of 71 and Oystercatchers 200 – both increases on the previous weeks. The three European White-fronted Geese remained and Shelduck and Tufted Duck numbers rose slightly to 10 and 35 respectively.
Finally, the elusive male Pheasant at Hooking made a rare and typically skulking appearance this week. The sole remnant of a small population that was introduced to the island in 1993, he appears to have been on his own since 2006 – the last year in which any other pheasants were recorded here.
Six Whooper Swans have spent the winter at the north of the island. This is fewer than in most previous years.
Black Guillemots started to return to the colonies this week, with more than 150 being seen on some days.