Monday, 14 September 2015

12th to 13th September

The south-east wind continued to blow at a gusty rate throughout, although with bright sunshine on both dates it felt like some of the 'goodies' were missing us. Such conditions though were good for raptor passage and having noticed 100 odd Sparrowhawks having been present on Utsira, off the Norway coast a few days ago, larger than normal numbers were then recorded passing through North Ronaldsay. At least 3 individuals were seen on 12th, with 4 + the next day but calculating the numbers was tricky and the total was more likely double this. Accompanying them were 6 Kestrels on 12th - 5 next day when the juvenile Marsh Harrier returned to the island again. There was some detectable wader passage again with a Green Sandpiper on both dates, 2 Common Sandpipers on the former and a Wood Sandpiper, 170 Knot and 24 Ruff on the latter. Passerines kept coming in dribs and drabs with a Red-breasted Flycatcher at Scotsha the highlight plus a Tree Pipit, 79 Wheatears, 3 Song Thrushes, the Barred Warbler still at Senness, a scattering of other warblers and 7 Snow Buntings on the 12th. The 13th delivered another brief RBF - this time near Gretchen with a similar range and numbers of the passerine species mentioned for the previous day.

Kestrel (photo Stephen Rutt)

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