Sunday, 23 September 2012

22nd September

What a day! The weather continued to be very light NW winds and sunshine, but the birds kept coming. Highlights included a trio of BBRC warblers with a Booted discovered late in the day at Haa, Blyth’s Reed at Schoolton and the Arctic still present (although mobile).
The Blyth's Reed Warbler did show well at times in the Schoolton garden, but generally not when I had my camera!
A good arrival of scarcities saw Yellow-browed Warbler make its entrance onto the year list with a conservative count of 14 around the island, 5 Barred Warblers, 2 Bluethroats, 2 Common Rosefinches, a Red-breasted Flycatcher in Troila Geo and a Red-backed Shrike at Setter. Amongst the counts of commoner migrants were 18 Willow Warblers (so just pipping Yellow-browed as the commonest warbler of the day!), 8 Lesser Whitethroat, 4 Chiffchaff, 3 Blackcap, 2 Garden Warbler, 2 Whitethroat, 3 Whinchat, 41 Lapland Buntings,14 Snow Buntings, 5 NW (and 2 Mealy) Redpolls, 2 Jack Snipe and 7 Grey Heron. A Redwing at Springfield was the first of the autumn and 3 Spotted Flycatchers and 6 Pied Flycatchers were the first of the month (which, along with the lack of September Redstarts so far this year, shows the effects of the consistent westerly winds of the last 3 weeks).

As if the birds weren’t enough, the calm conditions enabled 13 Risso’s Dolphins, 3 White-sided Dolphins and 23 Porpoise to be seen from the north of the island, whilst 10 White-beaked Dolphins and a Minke Whale were seen from the Good Shepherd.
The day was rounded off nicely with several of the islanders coming up to the bar to help celebrate Will’s birthday (I’m hoping my birthday next week has a similar set of birds!). Spirits amongst a full Obs were understandably high as the days birds were reflected upon and the prospect of more easterly winds was discussed. Will it bring more birds, we’ll find out soon…


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