Tuesday, 1 May 2018

30th April and 1st May

An insane day with hardly a breath of wind, not a cloud in the sky and flat, mirror calm seas on the 30th; it was a perfect day for scanning out across the sea and one lucky observer was rewarded with a cracking full summer plumaged White-billed Diver briefly at the mouth of Nouster Bay before flying off round the corner while other totals included 44 Great-northern Divers, the Black-throated Diver again in Nouster, 7 Red-throated Divers, 11 Long-tailed Ducks and 5 Red-breasted Mergansers.

                It was quieter on the land as migrants of note consisted of a drake Garganey on Ancum, 2 Woodpigeons, a Rock Pipit, 2 Dunnocks, 33 Wheatears, a Ring Ouzel, single Redwing and Fieldfare, 2 Blackcap, 5 Chiffchaffs, a Willow Warbler, 4 Rook, 7 Carrion Crows, a Brambling, a Goldfinch and 2 Common Redpolls.

                Another lovely start to the day on the first day of May but the cloud slowly built up and the SE wind gradually increased to become overcast, windy and chilly by the evening (although it felt much ‘rarer’!); the day’s highlight was an immature White-tailed Eagle (probably a 3cy) which flew up the west coast, landed on Torness briefly before flying back south, high out at sea.

                There was a slight increase in common migrants across the island with a few things turning up as the weather changed but it remained generally slow as totals included a Sparrowhawk, a White Wagtail, a Dunnock, a Mistle Thrush (first since 17th April), 5 Blackcaps, 5 Chiffchaffs, a Goldcrest, a Brambling, 2 Siskins and 2 Carrion Crows.   Waders continued to trickle in (building up to the usual mid-May peak counts) and included 48 Knot, 86 Sanderling, 33 Dunlin, 52 Bar-tailed Godwits and 206 Turnstone while the Kumlien’s Gull continued to fade and bleach as it keeps wandering up and down the east coast.

White-tailed Eagle                      Mark Warren - Heatherlea

Arctic Tern                                       Simon Davies

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