Wednesday, 20 August 2014

It has been a good couple of days on the island in terms of avian visitors, with slightly calmer conditions providing a much needed respite following the stormy weather of late. On the 19th, a Honey Buzzard flew North over Cristin mid-morning, which is the second record of this species so far this year. Other raptors on the island included a Sparrowhawk and a Buzzard.

The highlight of the 20th did not appear until the sun had set on the western horizon, when a pale morph Gyr Falcon was seen briefly on the lower slopes of Pen Cristin. After a quick pursuit of the local Peregrines, the bird then flew north over the mountain ridge, and was seen just once again as darkness fell. Considering the time of year, it is quite likely that this is the same beast that spent two days on Skomer to the 18th, which was seen to be wearing jesse's.
In other news, the most noteworthy passerine migrants comprised three White Wagtails, a Whinchat, 15 Willow Warblers, two Goldcrests and seven Spotted Flycatchers. A small selection of migrant waders included a Ringed Plover, five Whimbrels, 17 Redshanks and 12 Turnstones.

Some of the breeding Swallows are far from ready to leave for their wintering or two pairs are in the process of rearing their late second broods, whilst others are still incubating their second broods! There are a handful of migrant Swallows passing through each day at the moment too
Spotted Flycatchers are increasing in number on the island, with at least seven seen today, feeding busily on the multitude of insects in the sheltered net rides and withies 
The small pond near Ty Pellaf is the main hub of activity for a huge diversity of bird species at the moment: everything from Meadow Pipits and Linnets to the juvenile Moorhens have been visiting the pond frequently for a quick drink, some tasty aquatic invertebrates or a good bathing 
Stonechats- adult male above, and a juvenile below 
Juvenile Wren

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