Monday, 18 March 2013

17th to 18th March

It was once again a very disappointing few days for birds, continuing this below-average period for this time of year. The 17th was a extremely quiet and dull day: two Red-throated Divers and a couple of Common Scoters flew through the sound mid-morning; two Redwings and a Water Rail were noted in the withies; and a Siskin and four Chiffchaffs were present in the gardens. The Hooded Crow was also still present.
A flat calm day on the 18th saw a slight improvement in the number of birds by the end of the day, although it was still very poor. The Hooded Crow was seen early in the morning, along with two Jackdaws and two Grey Herons overhead. Four Skylarks were seen in the North-west fields, and a Fieldfare, a Redwing and three Song Thrushes were present in the withies. Two Goldcrests were new in, along with a second Wheatear on Pencristin. At least 120 Meadow Pipits were scattered around, which is a large increase on recent days.

 This soggy Wheatear arrived just before a large and intense sleety rain shower set in- the poor bird probably wondered why on earth it had ever left Africa in the first place 
 The Hooded Crow continued to fly around the island on both days
 Migrant numbers in general at the moment are very low compared to this time last year. Migrant Meadow Pipit flocks have only just peaked the 120 mark in recent days, compared to over 700 at the beginning of March in 2012
 Goldcrest numbers are also very low at the moment- only two new birds were seen on the 18th
Wrens continue to add to the dawn chorus all over the island

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