Tuesday, 17 February 2015

14th-17th February

Nothing major to report from a glorious 14th (Valentines Day and all that!) while a seriously windy 15th saw only the second Iceland Gull of the year, a 3rd winter sheltering at Bewan Loch with the 2  Glaucous Gulls also still present. The wind however had changed to a south-easterly direction for the first time in a while and with heavy rain overnight, the trusted combination of nice day (14th) to get things moving, followed by south east wind and rain (15th) delivered a few unexpected early migrants to the island on the 16th. Unless you spend the winter in the Northern Isles there was nothing too exciting but the first Jack Snipe of the year, 2 Woodpigeons, a new Chaffinch, at least 2 new Song Thrushes, perhaps half a dozen new male Blackbirds and a 100 strong flock of Redwings (40) and Fieldfares (60) make for a reasonable days birding in mid-February. Twite numbers are also on the increase and the trapping of birds has revealed some turnover and the presence of returning individuals from past winters. The 2 single Tundra Bean Geese remain at Westness and Hooking respectively, as does the Green-winged Teal and the adult male Hen Harrier has also performed a couple of flypasts of the obs.

Green-winged Teal

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