Saturday, 14 October 2017

12th and 13th October

Strong winds again but dry on the 12th and a few birds in sheltered spots on the east coast of the island, a Bluethroat was found at Sandback (possibly the same bird from Senness on the 9th), a new, better looking Arctic Peregrine type was at the north end, the Short-toed Lark and Red-breasted Flycatcher were still present and an unstreaked Acrocephalus Warbler seen briefly on the beach near Hooking potentially was the Blyth’s Reed Warbler from the 7th (or a new one!).

                Other landbird migrants have begun to decrease but did include a Merlin, 6 Swallows, a Dunnock, 2 Robins, a Whinchat still, 16 Wheatears, 54 Redwings and single Lesser Whitethroat, Blackcap and Goldcrest.   Also of note were 6 new Whooper Swans joining the family party of 5, a flock of 24 Barnacle Geese south, the Scaup still, 15 Ruff, 3 Jack Snipe and 19 Bar-tailed Godwits.

                Strong SSW winds continued to blast across the island on the 13th but there were long spells of sunshine and most of the day’s highlights came from a short seawatch in the afternoon with one definite adult Pomarine Skua past along with 3 other Skua sp. (which probably were also Pomarines), 2 Great Skuas, a late Manx Shearwater and 70 Kittiwakes.   Passerines were again thin on the ground with the exception of an influx of 120 Redwings along with the Red-breasted Flycatcher still, single Dunnock and Robin, 14 Wheatears, a Blackcap, a Chaffinch and a Lapland Bunting.

                Other birds of note included 11 Whooper Swans again (with a darvic ringed bird apparently ringed at Slimbridge), 35 Pink-footed Geese, 4 Long-tailed Ducks, 2 Merlins (fighting over a Meadow Pipit at the seawatch hide), a Peregrine and 3 Jack Snipe.

Rock Pipit,   Simon Davies

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