Monday, 30 September 2019

Today after some northerly winds that had come across the country we had high hopes. the wind was down and so the change over took place two days later than schedule. The rain then set in in the afternoon and was set to stay throughout the evening and into the night.

During the little time in which people managed to get out however some amazing totals were collected including huge numbers of common migrants heading south in the small window of opportunity.
The highlights of the day included the Buff-bellied Pipit still on the west coast. It was seen by one of our guests just a little further north than where it has been. Shortly after this the first two Yellow-browed Warblers of the year were found in the withys and at the farm. This little Siberian vagrant is becoming increasingly more common and a year without one now has become the oddity. Next a flock of gulls heading south down the west coast had two Egrets with them, one of which much larger than the other. The larger one could be idenified as a Great White Egret but the small was not seen well enough. In addition to these oddities there were also a few scarcities including four Lapland Buntings all heard in various places, a Pied Flycatcher at the observatory, along with a Firecrest and a Lesser Whitethroat too.

During this short window it become obvious that common migrants were making their way through the island with high counts of Meadow Pipits, swallows and Skylarks all being seen and heard. A venture onto the mountain behind the farm saw a host of migrants both streeming over and grounded by the rain as it moved in. Some of the best counts were made up of 496 Meadow Pipits, 858 Swallows and 102 Skylarks with additions including 13 Siskins, 28 Chaffinches, 57 Goldcrests, 51 Chiffchaffs, five Blackcaps, four Song Thrush, 32 Stonechats, 43 Robins, three Grey Wagtails, 27 White Wagtails and small numbers of waders; a single Snipe, six Purple Sandpipers and two Golden Plover.

One of the Yellow-browed Warblers

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