Sunday, 11 October 2015

10th October

A pleasant day with a light south-easterly wind brought a real surprise in the form of a Temminck's Stint at the north end. Initially on Trolla Vatn Loch, the bird (probably a juvenile) was mobile and particularly vocal, calling constantly and subsequently relocated to Bewan were this, just the 7th North Ronaldsay record of the species (and 9th individual) was well appreciated. The Northern Harrier was seen again in the morning but not subsequently while the Bluethroat lingers on at Quoy Banks. One of the events of the day was the obliteration of the Tufted Duck record - the previous best of 69 birds on 1st October was doubled today with 140 present on Bridesness Loch bringing 6 Pochards with them for company. There were also 79 Pink-footed Geese, 27 Barnacle Geese, 26 Shovelers, 4 Jack Snipes and 2 Short-eared Owls. On the passerine front, Thrush totals were similar to yesterday but other species were generally down in number with a Grey Wagtail, Dunnock, 11 Robins and 3 Redstarts - including an interesting female at Nether Linnay with a prominent white wing panel and thus potentially showing characteristics of the Eastern form samamiscus. Yellow-browed Warbler numbers were up to 9 birds and there were 6 Chiffchaffs, 16 Blackcaps, a Garden Warbler, 17 Goldcrests and 159 Snow Buntings recorded.
Temminck's Stint (record shot by George Gay)

 Bluethroat (photo George Gay)
 Potential samamiscus Redstart (photos Espen Quinto-Aspen)

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