The westerly winds continue, veering more northerly today - and getting cooler. Even with more ex AWs on the isle (Chas Holt has recently joined the throng) good birds are still hard (impossible) to find. Thus, the most notable birds have been geese, of the Pink-footed variety, with around 1,400 present on Sunday and still several hundred today. Greylags have started to appear also and two Barnacles put in an appearance plus a few Whooper Swans. In fact birding has been so slow that we have taken to trapping lots of Starlings to aid the long-term research on this species and have almost run out of colour-ring combinations!!
A small influx of Chaffinches has (sadly) set the pulse racing - 16 so far, and three each of Icelandic Redwings and Common Redpoll dropped in today, along with five Chiffchaffs, whilst Snow Buntings have climbed to over 40.
However, potential dip of the year may be the 'wholly dark large Petrel' reported by The Good Shepherd crew just a few miles north of Buness. Neil's description fits Bulwers better than Swinhoes!!!
One good thing about having so many ex-AWs around is that we have enough folk for a game of footie in the hall, three teams of three in fact!! Excellent! After a couple of hours running around the hall, interspersed with the occasional moment of footballing magic (perhaps not!) it was decided that enough was enough and we all congratulated ourselves on getting through without serious injury ;-)
The early morning flight for the High School bairns never made it due to the wind until the early afternoon but both schedule flights (slightly hairily) got in. So Lachlan eventually got out.......and Dr Martin Culshaw arrived to occupy his still warm bed and after having successfully twitched Sandhill Crane and Taiga Flycatcher in the preceding days! Congratulations Martin!