Wednesday, 26 April 2017

25th and 26th April

The 25th was another tough day to be out in the field with a blazing force 7 cold northerly wind bringing with it nasty little snow and hail showers; we battled away though but the rewards were slim as the highlights could be summarised as 24 Black-tailed Godwits, a Whimbrel, 21 Pink-footed Geese and single Woodpigeon, Blackcap, Chiffchaff and Brambling all looking pretty uncomfortable trying to find some shelter.

I think this is art!  photo Simon Davies

                The following day, although hardly spring-like, had slightly lighter winds, more sunshine and fewer showers meaning that for at least a few minutes at a time it was enjoyable to be out and about!   Waders showed some notable increases across the island as counts included 77 Ringed Plover, 498 Golden Plover, 2 Knot (the first ones since 9th March!), 177 Purple Sandpipers, 17 Dunlin, 24 Black-tailed Godwit, 280 Turnstone and 3 Whimbrel.

                The Green-winged Teal on Gretchen, the Black-throated Diver in Nouster and the pair of Garganey on Hooking were all still present while other little bits included 8 Great-northern Divers, 39 Pink-footed Geese seen heading north and a Manx Shearwater passed the seawatch hide along with a trickle of Auks.

                There was a big increase to 115 Wheatears across the island but they were the only landbirds that showed any real signs of movement as other things of note consisted of a Sparrowhawk, a Swallow, 10 Redwings and 7 Snow Buntings.

Wheatears,  photos Simon Davies

Snow Bunting,  photo Simon Davies

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