Tuesday, 27 October 2020

Wind and rain swept across the island from the South this morning, before wind and rain then swept across the island from the North-West this afternoon... however the weather did let off for the last few hours of sunlight, allowing for some birding.

The morning was spent entering ringing data and compiling ringing recoveries of the birds caught on the island that have either been ringed elsewhere or are subsequently found after leaving the island. It's always interesting to learn more about our birds' lives. George has been writing up the details ready for the 2020 report.

Otherwise, this morning consisted of regular checks of the Potter Trap set in Cristin Withy. It has been baited with fish in an attempt to catch a Water Rail, but this has been unsuccessful so far. With the end of the season fast approaching, we're hoping that one will make a timely appearance.

This afternoon's limited birding mainly took place around the Narrows and South End. Highlights were a Short-eared Owl seen flying around the South End, a Great Skua out to sea and a Golden Plover sat on Henllwyn.

There was a good number of Redshanks around the Narrows, with 14 recorded. Three Snipe were flushed from just in front of the lighthouse and another was in the Wetlands. Two Ravens have been feeding on Solfach with the Choughs and Magpies, allowing for nice views and size comparison, showing just how large and powerful these birds are.

Starlings are continuing to move through the island, 92 were recorded today. Other sightings include three Redwings, a Great Spotted Woodpecker and a Merlin.

Monday, 26 October 2020

The wind had swung round from the SW this morning, and was blowing at 30mph from the north-west. It was decidedly more chilly than it had been, with the wind from the north carrying much more of a bite. 


Steve set up outside the Obs for some seawatching, while George headed up to the hide on the North End. Early on, three Eiders, two Great Skuas and a Sooty Shearwater were the highlights, while the rest of the seawatch also brought some good quantity and quality of birds passing with two Manx Shearwaters, 240 Gannets, three Wigeon, 54 Mediterranean Gulls, 34 Black-headed Gulls, nine Common Gulls, 822 Kittiwakes, 285 Razorbills, one Puffin, one Pomarine Skua, another Sooty Shearwater and a Balearic Shearwater, too. Out to the north, the feeding flock of gulls had grown further and now contained approximately 5000 Black-headed Gulls, and 10000 Kittiwakes

Looking out from the North End


Seawatching aside, the rest of the day was quite quiet, however there was some overhead passage in the morning consisting of 735 Starlings, 25 Redwings, 192 Chaffinches, 29 Siskins and three Redpolls


Saturday, 24 October 2020

Today, a 50mph southerly wind was driving heavy rain across the island throughout the day, only finally letting up at around 7pm as dusk closed in. 


Due to the abhorrent weather conditions, the day was spent cracking on with paperwork and getting other bits and pieces done that we have to have finished before we can shut the Obs down for the winter, and ultimately, leave the island in the next gap in the weather. All curtains, bed sheets etc need washing and vacuum packing so that they don't become damp and mouldy over the winter, books need pulling away from the walls for the same reasons as does the furniture in all of the rooms. 

These are pretty mundane tasks, but when you add them all up, along with getting all of the data entry done, there's a lot to do before we can get on the boat! So these wet and windy days are rather a welcome inconvenience. 


The only birding today came between the bands of rain, with a few quick spells of seawatching, yielding only a few records of note: one Wigeon, two Common Scoters, six Mediterranean Gulls, 32 Black-headed Gulls, one Common Gull, three Great Black-backed Gulls, 120 Kittiwakes and 250 Razorbills

Friday, 23 October 2020

 The wind was still in the West today, but had picked up to 30mph, and with only a few showers forecasted, George headed to the North End for some seawatching. In just over two hours, one Diver sp., 44 Gannets, three Pale-bellied Brent Geese, one Common Scoter, 71 Mediterranean Gulls, 144 Black-headed Gulls, two Common Gulls, 420 Kittiwakes, two Lesser Black-backed Gulls and 600 Razorbills headed south, along with the highlight - the first Leach's Petrel of the year. 


A feeding flock of over a thousand Black-headed Gulls was present off the North End too, as well as around 2000 Kittiwakes. There could quite easily have been more than this, but unfortunately visibility was poor and the flock was fairly distant. Hopefully this flock will build and perhaps get a little closer. 


Wader highlights included a Grey Plover, a Purple Sandpiper, a Bar-tailed Godwit and a Whimbrel, while 16 Common Snipe were flushed on a walk through the Wetlands and Lowlands and presumably the same Woodcock as yesterday was still present at Nant. 


In the late afternoon, George headed out on a walk to look for seal pups, a new pup had been born on Henllwyn, equalling last years record of 55 pupping females, this is brilliant, and there is still time for another to be born to beat this record. Rough weather is forecasted for the next few days though, so hopefully the mother manages to keep her tiny pup safe through it all. 

The newborn pup on Henllwyn


The mother keeping a watchful eye from nearby

Alex got started with taking the nets down for the winter, with the Nant ringing site now having been taken down. It's served us well this year, catching a nice variety of species, most recently of which being the Barn Owl, each site has its own specialities. 

Sunset at Nant


Thursday, 22 October 2020

This morning had a fresh breeze coming in from the West, but combined with clear sunny skies, made for a lovely start to the day. 


Steve was up and out early and it was more than worth it! Up at Nant, eleven Long-tailed Tits were the first of the year which quickly headed south up the mountainside. In the North West Fields, a Richard's Pipit flew up before heading off South, while out at sea a Goldeneye flew south, both new species for the year too. A Ring Ouzel was present in the Wetlands with a group of Redwings, while a Yellowhammer was feeding in the seed crop planted in the pig field, a scarce bird here. 


George and Alex headed up to Nant to open a few nets as there were some few thrushes around. It was slow catching, but an Icelandic Redwing of the race coburni was a nice surprise! The winds had been ideal for a few turning up though, so it wasn't totally unexpected. Otherwise, a few Goldcrests were all.

Redwing of the race coburni - these birds are overall darker, strikingly so on the chest, and have longer wings, with this one measuring a huge 131mm

Well-marked under tailed coverts not usually present on the nominate iliacus

A different angle on the heavily marked, dark breast of the coburni - legs and feet also much darker than that of an iliacus

An iliacus caught a couple of days earlier for comparison. A comparatively paler breast, paler flanks, and pink legs. A much shorter wing too, not topping 120mm usually.  

Later on, nets were again opened at Nant in the hope of catching some thrushes coming into roost. Only three Redwings were caught, but another of these was an Icelandic bird. One net was left open until after dark, and a tape played under the net resulted in a Barn Owl being caught, a real success as this becomes the second one ringed this year!

The second coburni was an even more striking bird, being almost totally solidly chocolate brown across the breast and flanks, with dark brown legs too. 

The chocolate-brown flank feathers can be seen coming right round to the vent, and the under tail coverts have darker markings than the first bird, but with fewer marks, showing this is a variable feature between individuals. 

Barn Owl caught just after dark


Wednesday, 21 October 2020

Today was calmer than yesterday, allowing for an hour of mist netting mid-morning. There was a good number of finches in the garden and flying overhead so Alex opened nets at the Obs and George opened at Ty Pellaf.

Ten Lesser Redpolls were caught at Ty Pellaf, of which 48 were seen today. The only other bird caught here was a Linnet. The bulk of the catch at the Obs consisted of Goldfinches, which have been ever-present on the feeders for the past month or so, and 11 were ringed. Just two Chaffinches were ringed, but nine Goldcrests were also caught before rain stopped play.

The impressive sight of over 300 Swallows and 50 House Martins acted as an early warning system for the imminent rain, with some stopping to feed over the Lowlands before rapidly heading off.

Short-eared Owl

The first Short-eared Owl of the year was seen flying around the South End and was duly mobbed by a Merlin. This was the first of four owl species to be recorded today, the second of which came when alarm-calling Blackbirds alerted Steve to the presence of a Long-eared Owl in the Obs garden. A Little Owl was also heard calling in the Lowlands and a Barn Owl was seen whilst George and Alex were dazzling around the Narrows.

After seemingly heading out to sea, the Short-eared Owl was then seen again closer to the lighthouse.

Dazzling proved to be less successful this evening, in part due to less favourable tide height and time, but it was certainly worth it for another Purple Sandpiper which was caught on Solfach. This bird was notably longer-billed and larger than yesterday's and was also the first 1cy bird (hatched this year) to be caught this autumn.

First calendar year Purple Sandpiper showing broad, well-marked white edges to median coverts and buff-edged tertials.

Other sightings include: a Black Redstart, two Great Spotted Woodpeckers, three Grey Wagtails, 17 Siskins.

Ringing totals: one Purple Sandpiper, one Blackbird, 11 Goldfinches, 2 Chaffinches, 10 Lesser Redpolls, one Linnet and 9 Goldcrests.

Tuesday, 20 October 2020

Today was overcast, with winds continuing to pick up from the south, blowing ay 40mph for the majority of the day.


With the wind in mind, George headed to the North Hide on the off chance anything may be passing by. Within the first few minutes, a Sooty Shearwater shot past heading south, while the rest of the watch was less productive, it did produce some nice wildfowl records. Best of all were three Pintail, although five Wigeon, six Common Scoter and two Teal were also nice to see, on their journey south. Wildfowl aside, it was very quiet, with 22 Gannets, one Purple Sandpiper, four Mediterranean Gulls, 41 Black-headed Gulls, 11 Common Gulls, four Lesser Black-backed Gulls, 57 Herring Gulls, 1 Great Black-backed Gull and 91 Kittiwakes. 

The North Hide in today's storm

Once census was finished, the rest of the day was spent cracking on with some of the more mundane tasks we have to get through before we leave the island - it's really starting to creep up on us now! Today it was mainly data entry, getting over 300 ringing records put in from the Farm ringing site, but there are plenty other things to be getting on with too.


The rough conditions continued into this evening, and they were combined with a high tide just as it got dark, plus and an early moonset. Taking this into account, Alex and George headed out dazzling; they first covered the Narrows, where George caught a Bar-tailed Godwit on Solfach, the first ringed since 2016. It is likely this is the bird which has been present for the last few weeks as it had a very good weight, being 80g over the average, hardly surprising though, as it has been constantly feeding when seen in the day! Most of the waders on the island that we catch are newly arrived, skinny, and in need of fattening up before they move on, so it was nice to see the Godwit in such good condition.  

Bar-tailed Godwit

A long, characteristically slightly upturned bill for feeding. 

They then continued on to the South End, in the hope that the high tide would have pushed waders into more gettable locations around the coastline. They were right to be optimistic, as on the East Side of the South End, Alex caught five Turnstones and two Redshanks which were roosting on some rock pools near the top of the cliffs, while George caught a Turnstone and a Purple Sandpiper on the other side, not bad in terms of numbers or quality!

Purple Sandpiper, the third trapped this year. 

A nice freshly-moulted adult wing looked remarkably purple in some lights, what a stunning bird!




Monday, 19 October 2020

The wind really picked up today but the rain didn't come until later this afternoon so Steve, George and Alex headed out to do census this morning. The strong southerly winds meant that conditions weren't ideal for birding, with many of the birds hunkering down out of the wind.

With this in mind, George sea-watched from the North End for two hours and counted 22 Common Scoter, two Teal, 450 Razorbills, seven Mediterranean Gulls, 49 Black-headed Gulls, seven Common Gulls and 121 Kittiwakes

High tide in Cafn

There was also a large number of gulls around the Narrows taking shelter from the rough conditions, most of which were sat on the sea in Solfach. These totalled seven Mediterranean Gulls, 94 Black-headed Gulls, 14 Common Gulls and 99 Herring Gulls

Quite a few waders were also sheltering and feeding around the Narrows and the South End, including two Purple Sandpipers, one Dunlin, one Bar-tailed Godwit, one Whimbrel, 70 Curlews, 19 Redshank and 65 Turnstones. 14 Common Snipe were also seen, 11 of which were in the Wetlands.

With a good number of waders and rough conditions, George and Alex decided to go dazzling this evening. However, once on the Narrows, it seemed that conditions were in fact too rough as most of Solfach and Henllwyn were covered by the sea and thus devoid of birds. George decided to carry on along the coast and spotted a Grey Heron down on the rocks. After clambering down to get to it, he was able to catch it. The bird was then taken to the Obs to be ringed and is only the 7th ever to be ringed on Bardsey, but the second this year! 

Grey Heron

A loose grip is required around the neck for both the safety of the bird and the ringer

Elsewhere, three Great Spotted Woodpeckers were seen today, two Swallows were at Nant along with a Brambling, two Siskins, three Fieldfares and a Song Thrush. Other thrush totals from today were 22 Blackbirds and nine Redwings.

Other sightings include: two Merlins, 57 Oystercatchers, two Blackcaps, 40 Chaffinches, two Lesser Redpolls and a Reed Bunting.

Henllwyn covered by the high tide


Sunday, 18 October 2020

Today was cloudy and the wind became more and more Southerly throughout. With the forecast looking rough for the next few days, George and Alex made the most of the relatively calm conditions and opened nets at Ty Pellaf and in the Withies.

There a was decent passage of finches over the island today, focussed mainly along the mountainside and passing over Ty Pellaf. Finch numbers totalled 238 Chaffinches, six Bramblings, 155 Goldfinches, 47 Linnets and 68 Lesser Redpolls.

a rather red male Lesser Redpoll

This finch passage meant that George was able to ring 20 Chaffinches, 11 Goldfinches and 16 Lesser Redpolls. A further six Lesser Redpolls and two Chaffinches were trapped in the Withies, but numbers were generally poorer here. Seventeen Goldfinches and a Chaffinch were then caught in the obs garden this afternoon.

male Stonechat

Other ringing highlights from Ty Pellaf included a Reed Bunting, a Stonechat and three Redwings. One of yesterday's Yellow-browed Warblers was recaptured in the Withies and another Great Spotted Woodpecker was caught, along with four Song Thrushes.

Yellow-browed Warbler

Overall thrush numbers were down today but a total of 22 Song Thrushes were counted, the highest number so far this Autumn. Also present were 23 Blackbirds, six Fieldfares, 18 Redwings and a Mistle Thrush.

Other highlights included; a Merlin, a Water Rail, 11 Swallows, a Grey Wagtail and eight Blackcaps.

Ringing totals: one Great Spotted Woodpecker, one Wren, four Dunnocks, one Stonechat, three Blackbirds, six Song Thrushes, four Redwings, two Blackcaps, two Goldcrests, 23 Chaffinches, 28 Goldfinches, two Linnets, 22 Lesser Redpolls and a Reed Bunting - 100 birds of 14 species.

Saturday, 17 October 2020

 Today was a bit breezier than yesterday, with clear skies and winds still coming from the East.

It was sheltered enough for George to open nets at the obs this morning and catching was steady throughout. It was much the same as usual with thrushes and finches being the main feature, however seven Blackcaps ringed through the morning indicated that a few more of this species had come in overnight, with four seen feeding on the apples in the Obs garden. 

Goldcrest

Elsewhere, Steve and Sam headed to Nant where three Great Spotted Woodpeckers were flying round the Plantation, a further three were at the Obs, with singles at Carreg Bach and Traeth Ffynnon also, an impressive count for the island. One was ringed at the Obs, bringing this year's total to six - a new record. 

juvenile female Great Spotted Woodpecker caught at the Obs

Alex headed down to the Withies to open a couple of more sheltered nets and quickly caught two Yellow-browed Warblers, the second and third to be ringed this year - brilliant. Wind began to pick up, so he closed soon after, but it was well worth opening for an hour or so! 

Yellow-browed Warbler

There was a good movement of small gulls along the West Coast again today, mainly made up of Black-headed Gulls again, with some Common and Mediterranean Gulls thrown in. Down in Solfach, two foreign ringed Mediterranean Gulls, one from France, and one from Sweden, were feeding on the tideline. 

Ringing totals: two Yellow-browed Warblers, two Goldcrests, two Chiffchaffs, eight Goldfinches, seven Chaffinches, seven Blackcaps, one Dunnock, five Redwings, one Song Thrush, two Blackbirds and one Great Spotted Woodpecker. 38 birds of 11 species. 

Friday, 16 October 2020

 Another calm day of easterlies meant that the nets were open and we were all hoping for more good vis-mig. Chaffinches, Blackbirds and Redwings were the most noticeable sounds in the garden early in the morning which is always exciting. 

It was quieter than the previous two days in terms of thrush passage, but a steady stream of 'tseeping' Redwings made for a very autumnal setting. Many of the Blackbirds that were caught had the long wings of continental birds, meaning these will have probably crossed the North Sea in the recent past to make their way through Bardsey. 

Redwing caught today

The story is the same for many of today's Chaffinches which seemed to be of the larger continental race, too. With them was a Brambling which was caught at the Obs, these are quite large, beautiful finches that come to Britain in the winter, after breeding further north and east in Europe. 

We've had a good year for catching Great Spotted Woodpeckers, today the 5th one was ringed at the Obs, that's the joint highest year total in the Obs' history. 


Thursday, 15 October 2020

There was more East in the wind today and it was clear that many of yesterday's thrushes had moved on and fewer had arrived. Conditions allowed for more nets to be opened this morning, with George ringing in the Withies, Alex at Ty Pellaf and Sam at the Obs. 

Ringing produced both decent quantity and quality, with the standout bird being a first year Marsh Warbler caught in Plas Withy. This is just the thirteenth record of this species on Bardsey and unsurprisingly the first of the year. The bird was in very good condition, carrying a large amount of fat that will help to fuel its migration to Africa. This species can be confused with other Acrocephalus warblers but its identity was confirmed by characteristics and biometrics taken in the hand (more photos at the end of the post). It could've easily gone unnoticed had it not been captured! Upon release the bird flew into nearby vegetation and was not subsequently seen.

Marsh Warbler caught and ringed in Plas Withy

Other ringing highlights were a Tree Sparrow caught at Ty Pellaf, the first to be ringed since 1997, and a House Sparrow in the Withies. Two House Sparrows were present in the Withies, but the other evaded capture. 

Tree Sparrow

female House Sparrow

Bramblings also made their way onto this year's ringing list as two were caught at Ty Pellaf and one in the Withies. Twelve of these rather handsome finches were recorded today along with over a hundred Chaffinches, 12 Siskins, almost two hundred Goldfinches and 14 Lesser Redpolls.

adult male Brambling

The fifth and final species to be added to this year's ringing list was Woodpigeon. These large and surprisingly powerful birds can be difficult to catch, demonstrated by the fact that it has taken seven months for one to be caught! 

Woodpigeon

Despite the reduced thrush passage compared to yesterday, 75 Blackbirds, 16 Fieldfares, 17 Song Thrushes and 55 Redwings were still present. Of these, nine Blackbirds, two Song Thrushes and 12 Redwings were trapped and ringed. After lunch, George and Alex headed to Nant for another mid-afternoon ringing session, with the highlight being two more Great Spotted Woodpeckers.

Redwing

first year male Blackbird

Overhead passage produced 122 Skylarks, three Woodlarks, four Grey Wagtails.

The past few days have been notably rather warm and sunny and 12 Red Admiral butterflies were recorded, along with 18 yesterday.

Other highlights include: one Water Rail, two Coal Tits, one Reed Bunting and a Yellow-browed Warbler.

Ringing totals: one Woodpigeon, two Great Spotted Woodpeckers, four Wrens, 12 Dunnocks, one Stonechat, nine Blackbirds, two Song Thrushes, 12 Redwings, one Marsh Warbler, three Blackcaps, three Chiffchaffs, seven Goldcrests, one Great Tit, one House Sparrow, one Tree Sparrow, 40 Chaffinches, three Bramblings, 15 Goldfinches, five Lesser Redpolls.  123 birds of 19 species.

Marsh Warbler


Short notch on P2

Straw-coloured legs

Wednesday, 14 October 2020

The wind was blowing from the North-East this morning, with clear skies overhead, so hopes were high for a day of good movement. 

Gusty wind early on meant that there was a reduced ringing effort, with only the most sheltered nets being opened in the Obs garden and in the Withies. It was clear when opening the nets in the half-light that there had been an arrival of both finches and thrushes overnight, with the distinctive 'tseep' of Redwings being heard from almost every bush in the garden, along with the calls of Blackbirds, the occasional Fieldfare, and many Chaffinches and Goldfinches. The first few rounds were best for thrushes, and by the end of the morning 18 Redwings and eight Blackbirds had been ringed, along with around 35 finches (full totals at the bottom of the post).

Redwing caught at the Obs

1cy male Blackbird caught at the Obs

Steve headed down to the farm where two Bramblings were calling from inside Donygoch garden, while more finches and thrushes continued to pass overhead along with a single Lapland Bunting. On the South End, a Black Redstart was present in the Lighthouse Compound and a further two Lapland Buntings flew over heading south, with one stopping briefly on the coast. Over the sea, gulls were moving north in good numbers too with the vast majority being Black-headed Gulls, 678 were counted along with 24 Mediterranean Gulls and 11 Common Gulls.

Black Redstart on the LSA hut

Black-headed, Common and Mediterranean Gulls heading north

Alex and George headed out once nets were closed,  thrushes peppered the mountainside with Redwings and Blackbirds being flushed out of the gorse, and a trickle more still moving overhead. A couple of nets were opened at Nant, it was quiet, but a surprise was two Firecrests which appeared in the net together, what a treat!

The two Firecrests caught at Nant

Redwing dropping into the island

In the afternoon, Steve headed out again to the north and managed to pick out a Ring Ouzel amongst the hordes of Blackbirds lining the field margins, a nice male too! A ring-tail Hen Harrier appeared on the Mountainside where it slowly made its way north and disappeared round the East Side of the island. A flock of 30 Jackdaws was in the North West fields with 220 Starlings, while 16 Rooks flew over. 

male Ring Ouzel above Carreg Fawr

Starling dropping into NW fields

Full totals include: three Wigeon, one Pintail, five Teal, three Sparrowhawks, three Buzzards, two Merlins, one Jack Snipe, eight Snipe, two Bar-tailed Godwits, 83 Skylarks, 26 Robins, 157 Blackbirds, 84 Fieldfare, 14 Song Thrushes, 585 Redwings, three Mistle Thrushes, one Lesser Whitethroat, four Blackcaps, 12 Chiffchaffs, 37 Goldcrests, 21 Great Tits, 294 Starlings, three Bramblings, seven Siskins, 163 Goldfinches, 68 Linnets, 11 Redpolls and one Reed Bunting

Ringing Totals: Goldcrest 9, Firecrest 2, Chiffchaff 3, Wren 5, Chaffinch 15, Goldfinch 18, Robin 2, Blackcap 1, Dunnock 1, Redwing 18, Blackbird 8, Starling 2. 84 birds of 12 species. 



Tuesday, 13 October 2020

 The weather was cool today and felt very autumnal. The wind was once again from the north, gusting at 19mph, but the sun was out which meant it was warm enough when you were sheltered from the breeze. 

The crop fields at the farm were full of finches again, 123 Goldfinches were feeding on the seeds, there were Linnets with them too. Overhead there were Siskins and Chaffinches which added to the autumnal feel. There was also a decent passage of Skylarks, which meant every now and then you would hear them calling which is always nice. A Yellow-browed Warbler was also calling loudly in the garden in the mid-afternoon!

The first Fieldfare of the autumn was seen today, too! It was sitting on a fence post at the farm, four Redwings, four Song Thrushes and 11 Blackbirds added to the thrush numbers too. Hopefully, there will be many more of these to come in the next few days, whilst we enjoy some gentle Easterlies.

Sightings today include: 39 Curlews, 37 Turnstones, four Mediterranean Gulls, seven Black-headed Gulls, one Great Spotted Woodpecker, 31 Skylarks, 67 Meadow Pipits, one Grey Wagtail, one Wheatear, 9 Chiffchaffs, five Blackcaps, 13 Goldcrests, 193 Goldfinches, 38 Chaffinches, 12 B, 57 Linnets and five Lesser Redpolls.

Monday, 12 October 2020

It was rather cold again today, with more strong North-Westerlies blowing throughout the day.

Despite this, at least three Yellow-browed Warblers were seen across the island today, with one in the withies, one at Ty Capel and one at Ty Pellaf. Two Reed Buntings were also seen at Ty Pellaf and a Great Spotted Woodpecker was seen at the obs, continuing the relatively good passage of these scarce Bardsey birds over the past few weeks.

Fifteen Common Snipe were counted in the wetlands later this morning, the highest number so far this autumn. Whilst in the wetlands a few Redwings were seen in Ty Pellaf Withy, before 40 eventually flew out of the dense cover. This is the biggest flock so far this autumn and is hopefully a sign of things to come.


The first Redwing of the autumn was ringed yesterday.

This evening Sam, George and Alex went to Henllwyn to release a young Manx Shearwater that had managed to find its way into Cristin Withy this afternoon. Whilst sat on the beach a Merlin was seen hunting around the Narrows and flew within half a metre of us in pursuit of a Wheatear, quite a ridiculous experience!

Other sightings today include: three Common Scoters, five Mediterranean Gulls, a Wigeon and a Bar-tailed Godwit.

Sunday, 11 October 2020

More north-westerlies today gusting at 32mph. It was made hard work by heavy rain throughout the morning, however, with clear skies to the east, the sun was shining through created an amazing rainbow over the West Coast.


The most noticeable movement was the Skylarks migrating overhead, every now and then you'd hear their chirruping call as they fly high over the island. There were four Redwings in the Obs garden and four up at Nant, too, one of which was caught in the afternoon.

Finches were once again around the farm and a ringing session in the afternoon yielded six Goldcrests, eight Goldfinches, three Lesser Redpolls, one Chaffinch, one Blackcap, one Linnet, seven Dunnocks.

Lesser Redpoll caught at the Farm this afternoon

Seawatching didnt produce many birds, 108 Kittiwakes, ten Mediterranean Gulls and 57 Razorbills were recorded. But unexpectedly, two Great White Egrets flew along the West Coast past the South End Hide, a great record and the second of the year!

Another good record was a Great Spotted Woodpecker which hung around the obs during the morning. This species has been recorded almost daily in the last week, so whether they are the same birds or passing through is hard to say.

At dusk, a Little Owl could be heard calling from near Carreg and the Barn Owl flew past the Obs and headed towards Ty Pellaf.