Tuesday, 11 October 2016

7th-8th October

It's been really good couple of days on here with migrants coming in and plenty of birders to find them.
Thrush numbers have began to rise and showed their highest totals on the 8th, 98 Redwing, 41 Song Thrush, 10 Fieldfare and 2 Mistle Thrushes on the 7th. Meadow Pipit numbers rose to 401 on the 8th and Rock Pipit numbers peaked at 15 on the 7th.
Wildfowl is always a big part of proceedings this time of year and numbers have been growing, 2 Whooper Swans were present around the island on the 8th, while Teal and Wigeon numbers rose to 213 and 148 respectivly, meanwhile there were 4 Gadwall, 31 Mallard, 19 Shoveler and 4 Tufted Ducks to round things off.
A surprise redhead Goosander on the 7th, flew up Linklet Bay but despite further searching wasn't re-located, another bird that avoided re-location was a 1st Winter Dotterel seen briefly near the Old Kirk before flying with Golden Plover never to be seen again! Grey Plovers were present both days as was the lingering Grey Phalarope on Gretchen, other waders of interest were 5 Jack Snipe, 1 Ruff, 2 Knot, 5 Woodcock and a Greenshank.
Short-eared Owls are always a nice bird to have around and 2 were present on both days in various locations. Goldcrest started to influx onto the island the 8th saw 92 recorded but this was dwarfed by the previous day that saw 148 recorded, there were probably more than that on the island but we have to be conservative in our counting!
Passerine numbers in general were good over the two day period the highest counts were 15 Chiffchaff, 2 Lesser Whitethroats, 22 Blackcap, 12 Yellow-browed Warblers, the Firecrest was still in Holland and our third Red-breasted Flycatcher of the year was trapped in Holland.
We've had so many different Buntings and Finches it's only fitting they're get there own section in this blog post, the saw the highest totals posted for Chaffinch and Brambling coming in at 12 and 14 while the 8th saw a Hawfinch trapped at Holland, a single Rosefinch, 48 Snow Buntings, the Ortolan Bunting back at Kirbest and 5 Little Bunting were present on both days.
We predicted the big rare in the previous post and 7th bought us exactly what we'd been craving, Sam managed to stumble across a stunning Red-flanked Bluetail on the Lenswick footpath, the bird showed superbly for all spectators and provided that bit of magic we'd all been waiting for!
Red-flanked Bluetail - George Gay
Red-flanked Bluetail - George Gay

Red-flanked Bluetail - George Gay

Short-eared Owl - George Gay

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