Thursday, 6 September 2012

Storm Force.

A calmer day yesterday, although the wind remained relatively blowy from the west. A few migrants did make it through, with the first two Lapland Buntings of the autumn noted along with two Sedge Warblers and a Blackcap that were also new in. A Redpoll flying over Dutfield was also new, but it didn't land, so couldn't be (sub)specifically identified. The Arctic Warbler was again showing in the Bull's Park crop strip, whilst other lingering birds included 2 Barred Warblers (the showy bird at the Obs and one that roamed from Setter to Chalet), a Common Rosefinch (in the Houll crop strip), Sand Martin, Fieldfare, Sparrowhawk, Siskin, Whinchat and a small number of commoner warblers.
With the wind continuing to fall away through the evening, we put on a Storm Petrel ringing session for an eager Obs-load of guests. A successful night saw 45 birds caught, with many of our guests I suspect now ranking Stormie as one of the birds of the trip. That's probably it for the petrel ringing for the year, as we have very few calm nights forecast in the next week or two, but's it been a good season for this ultimate mini-seabird, with around 870 ringed and a few birds from elsewhere being caught, including two from Norway.
So not a bad haul of birds yesterday, especially considering the recent weather, although today looks like we'll have to cope with another wet and windy westerly gale. This is Fair Isle though, so you never know what could turn up (although the weather might have to improve a bit before we can see it!).

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