Saturday, 8 November 2014

7th November

Another torrid day weather wise, with heavy rain throughout although the strong south-easterly wind was more tolerable by late afternoon. After almost 24 hours of being stuck indoors we had to just get outside and with the first walk of the traps resulting in a Great Grey Shrike caught and ringed and 10 Woodcocks seen there was plenty of incentive to go and get wet!! A second Great Grey Shrike was found sheltering along the west coat near the airfield and the Woodcock total reached a record breaking 174-although with less than a third of the island covered the real total would have no doubt been in excess of 300!!! Only the (apparently) sheltered north and west coastline were checked in 4 hours of afternoon birding with remaining sightings comprising 2 Long-eared Owls (Antabrek/Dennishill), 3 Short-eared Owls (2 on the rocks off Senness/West dyke), a Black Redstart, 356 Blackbirds, 55 Redwings, 185 Fieldfares, 10 Song Thrushes and 21 Snow Buntings.

Great Grey Shrike

1 comment:

owen williams said...

Fantastic news to hear of the 10 woodcock ringed. I have been following the migration trends through Bird Obs for a few years now and its a fascianating insight into thier autumn migration. 174 is an amazing number for one day! So far it looks like Norwegian birds have come through but further south numbers have been lower. I caught 2 on my study site in West Wales last week, these were the first through for me.But I hope to catch up to 230 through the winter. Both my birds last week were beow average weight (325gms) with one at 274gms which was feeding avidly so I guess had just flown in. It would be interesting to see some data on your average weights as I imagine all yours are fresh in after a long flight from Scanidinavia. Owen Williams The Woodcock Network.