Saturday, 5 November 2016

Bitter northerly winds continued today and increased in strength which seemed to halt any real migrant movements. However the day wasn't without excitement as early highlights came in the form of a pale bellied Brent Goose off the West Coast closely followed by a pair of Whooper Swans which powered their way south down the centre of the island calling, before disappearing off the South End.

Yesterday there were two, today there were three Siberian Chiffchaffs residing in the Withies adding to an already fantastic run of this race of Chiffchaff with at least a dozen individuals seen so far. Very little else passerine wise was noted although a Bullfinch still resided in the Observatory garden along with a Blue Tit. Other passerines noted included five Goldfinches, a Siskin 14 Chaffinches, eight Goldcrest, 137 Starlings and a small number of thrushes, nine Blackbirds, a pair of Song Thrushes and a Redwing. A pair of Merlins continue to wreak havoc across the island keeping plenty of Starlings on their toes whilst a stunning adult male Sparrowhawk and Common Buzzard patrolled other parts of the island.

Only small amounts of gulls were recorded today with any significant movements of species halting for the time being, that said there was still a nice variety of species on show, 79 Kittiwakes, six Greater Black-backed Gulls, 46 Herring Gulls, a Lesser Black-backed Gull, eight Common Gulls and 100 Black-headed Gulls spotted off the coast, also passing were three Gannets, 283 Razorbills and 11 Guillemots.

A single Purple Sandpiper was seen off the South End and dotted around the island were 17 Turnstones, three Redshanks, 33 Curlews, a Whimbrel, Common Snipe and 30 Oystercatchers.

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