Wednesday, 13 September 2017

Another fine day on Bardsey where, once again, seawatching stole the show. Despite conditions not quite being ideal, a further nine Leach's Petrels were seen today, mostly in the afternoon. Five Sabine's Gulls, two Little Gulls (the first of the year), a Little Tern, a Black Tern and four Long-tailed Skuas were the other highlights of another fine day at the office, with a very good back-up cast were also recorded. With five Common Gulls and three Black-headed Gulls joining the regular species, Bardsey had an eight-gull-day for the first time this year. 30 Lesser Black-backed Gulls moved south through the island too, while as in most recent days, Kittiwakes were the most abundant bird; a grand total of 11,362, the highest count this year, was recorded.

2001 Razorbills, 1260 Manx Shearwaters and 322 Gannets were the next most numerous species, while it was a good day for Terns. Alongside the above-mentioned species 61 Arctic, 63 Sandwich, four Common and three "Commic" Terns passed through. It was another excellent day for Arctic Skuas with 36 seen, and ten Great Skuas in addition. 73 Guillemots was the highest count since the breeding season, and two Puffins off the South End were a late record. Finally, nine Common Scoters passed through in the morning.

On the land, the highlights were a Firecrest at the Plantation and the lingering Ring Ouzel. Very little quantity of birds was recorded, with 38 Goldcrests, 19 Chiffchaffs, 19 Robins, two Blackcaps and a Goldfinch on land, three Grey Wagtails and a Merlin overhead and 26 White Wagtails around the coast. The most interesting waders of the day were two Golden Plovers that passed through out to sea, as did almost all of the day's 22 Dunlins. On the land, two Purple Sandpipers were a nice surprise for island residents taking part in the weekly guided walk, with other species logged being 21 Curlews, 19 Turnstones, 15 Oystercatchers, seven Redshanks and five Ringed Plovers. It was the first day in several months that not a single Whimbrel was to be seen!

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