Thursday, 20 August 2020

17th-19th August

Fog has dominated the last three days with island in an almost shroud of the stuff, it's probably effected the birds we might have got but that's all ifs and buts! 

A calm day bought in the first bout of fog and there was little of note around, a lone Willow Warbler was in the gardens at Holland, a ringtail Hen Harrier, that spent the next two days here, was seen in various locations in the South end of the island, a Kestrel was seen hovering over East Loch Park in the early afternoon and a young male Merlin was hammering around the Links in the afternoon eventually killing an Alba Wagtail for it's tea. The days highlight however was our second Mediterranean Gull of the year, a rather smart 1st winter that made it's way North past the beacon during an otherwise fruitless sea-watch.

The following day looked like it would be good on paper but that belligerent fog meant birds probably weren't going to see us and that proved to be the case. A Grey Plover at Haskie was the first of the Autumn and it remained the following day. Willow Warblers at Burray, Upper Linnay and Ancum were the only migrant warblers but were joined by 12 Sedge Warblers including three fledgies at Ancum Willows. Another Rock Pipit on the West side marked only the second of the Autumn period and 4 Ruff near Holland are part of a very slowly growing flock.

The 19th was a much better day on paper but involved quite a few lingering birds that have simply avoided the obs staff for a couple of days. The Red-backed Shrike was back at Bewan House and Barred Warblers at both Holland and Senness have been lingering for quite some time now. A little influx of 5 Garden Warblers did show some promise as did the first Pied Flycatcher of the Autumn. Our second Melodious Warbler of the year was showing quite well at times in the garden at Dennishill, as you may have noticed we initially put it out as a Icterine but a few raised queries and a couple of texts and emails and we'd straightened it out, a 10th record for the island, so we're still to get Icterine on the year list! Away from avian things a Basking Shark was lurking off the top end of the island. 

Melodious Warbler                                                               GG

Mediterranean Gull                                                                                          GG

Willow Warbler                                                                                                 GG



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