Saturday, 2 April 2016
After a deluge of rain overnight the day started off wet and then got even wetter. The wind dropped allowing our hearty gang of volunteers to make landfall though, unfortunately straight into a torrential downpour. The island’s pools and ponds are now full to the brim, including the excellent flood pool on The Narrows; always a veritable mecca for waders. A Sandwich Tern was seen in Solfach in the morning, the first recorded this year.
A walk around The Narrows saw one Merlin, eight Purple Sandpipers, one Curlew, seven Redshanks, and 12 Turnstones. Overhead the first real Hirundine movement started with 22 Sand Martins, 13 Swallows, and five House Martins seen. Coverage of the rest of the island produced 100 Meadow Pipits, five Wheatears, one Song Thrush, two Blackcaps, 23 Chiffchaffs, 11 Willow Warblers, 12 Goldcrests, two Buzzards, and one Snipe.
Phylloscopus warbler numbers are gradually increasing on the island, and the ratio of Chiffchaffs:Willow Warblers is also beginning to even out, with around 50:50 at the moment. We can expect larger number of Willow Warblers in the coming weeks, as these longer-distance migrants arrive in earnest
Some very smart male Stonechats have been showing off their stuff, display flighting all around the island and giving off a bewildering array of different calls and mimicked versus within their songs: anything from a Peregrine to a Sandwich Tern have been heard amongst the mix so far!
Goldcrests are still being trapped and ringed, although numbers have declined since the larger arrival last week