Tuesday, 18 July 2017

A much quieter day, after yesterday's pulse of migration. The highlight came from the sea, where a long overdue first Risso's Dolphin of the year was seen. Otherwise very little was seen out to sea despite a fair bit of effort, 13 Puffins all that remain, and six Black-headed Gulls offshore from Solfach.

Another good selection of waders was represented with 16 Curlews, nine Dunlins, eight Common Sandpipers (this species showing a very good passage by Bardsey standards this year) and six Redshanks providing the numbers. Two Whimbrels, two Ringed Plovers and, most unusually, a single Snipe (the second of return passage, following one in June) were also seen.
juvenile Curlew, © Ben Porter; benporterwildlife.wordpress.com
The young Curlew in the photo above was dazzled during the night by Ben, and duly ringed. The patterning of the tertials confirmed what we were almost certain of based on how short the bill was, that this is a juvenile fledged during the summer. We often assume that our early arriving Curlews are failed breeders, so this is an excellent example of just how early the young can fledge and begin to disperse/migrate from their breeding grounds.

A Great Spotted Woodpecker briefly above Cristin was the most unusual of a small selection of grounded migrants; six Willow Warblers were also scattered about and a Grey Wagtail on the shore on the South End. Vis-mig didn't live up to the standards set by a good day yesterday, but nine Swifts, 20 House Martins and three Sand Martins trickled through, with a single flock of 20 Starlings heading north along the West Coast. Also seen over the West Coast was a Buzzard thermalling mid-afternoon.

A rather good day for Butterflies was highlighted by a season high of 442 Green-veined Whites, and an arrival of 65 Red Admirals, with a single Painted Lady and two Hummingbird Hawk-moths further evidence of migration.  Two Large Whites and Singles of Peacock, Small Copper and Grayling added diversity, with 129 Meadow Browns and 58 Six-spot Burnets counted.

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