Tuesday, 25 October 2016

A Snow Bunting was a nice sighting picked up over the South End heading in a northerly direction through the island whilst off the South End a passage of Skylarks occurred and 24 of the 51 individuals logged were seen heading out to sea. Blackbirds were again the most prominent thrush with 28 recorded, over 100 have been now been ringed this season, 17 Fieldfare passed overhead with 19 Redwings and 11 Song Thrushes snuck through the dense vegetation.

A Yellow-browed Warbler was trapped and ringed in the Withies, presumably the same bird that has been seen over recent days occupying the same location, other warblers noted were seven Blackcaps, most of which were also trapped and ringed, four Chiffchaffs, a Willow Warbler and 39 Goldcrests scattered about.

Yellow-browed Warbler, one of the more common Autumn overshoots but still extremely far offtrack for such a small bird 
A Common Buzzard was the first for a few days, two Merlins hunted around the South End and a pair of Sparrowhawks, Kestrel and Peregrine were other raptors.

As a brief rain shower hit the island in the afternoon a passage of Chaffinches, and a large proportion of sightings of this species, was observed heading over the Observatory, most likely birds that had been driven down by the weather front, 189 were logged today. A Brambling in the Observatory garden in the morning, single Siskin, small movement of 48 Goldfinches, 16 Linnets and two Lesser Redpolls were other finch totals for the day. Water Rails still lurked through the Withies and Lowlands, five present today, whilst 30 Robins, ten Stonechats, one Wheatear, three Blue Tits, 186 Starlings and a Reed Bunting were notable records.

A Red-throated Diver passing by the South End was one of the highlights although a great number, and variety, of wildfowl were spotted off the coasts today. A young drake and three female Eider bobbed off the southern tip, four Wigeon, eight Teal,  24 Mallards occupied the Narrows and three Common Scoters passed further out. Gannets passed by the island throughout the day with 120 being the total, 11 Guillemots and 144 Razorbills also passed along with a healthy selection of gulls, 12 Mediteranean Gulls, 513 Black-headed Gulls, 68 Common Gulls, 86 Lesser Black-backed Gulls, 81 Herring Gulls, 18 Greater Black-backed Gulls and seven Kittiwakes all of varying ages.

A pair of Woodcocks brought an autumnal feeling to the day, seen at the Plantation and the Withies, five Lapwings were a pleasant addition around the Narrows and West Coast, with 13 Oystercatchers, a Jack Snipe, five Common Snipes, two Whimbrel, 45 Curlews, 13 Redshanks and 28 Turnstones making up the wader counts for the day.

A Peacock and five Red Admirals were the Lepidoptera noted and a Slow Worm in the Observatory garden and three Porpoise off the West Coast were non avian highlights.

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