Wednesday 17 October 2012

17th October

A day of more easterly winds, with most migrants appearing in similar numbers and several decent birds remaining; with the Lanceolated Warbler, Great Grey Shrike, Great Tit and Woodlark all seen again. An Olive-backed Pipit in Field Ditch was assumed to be yesterday’s bird from Schoolton relocating, but photos seem to show a rather different head pattern, suggesting it could be the sixth of the autumn for us.

Great Tit sightings from several gardens around the island were assumed to be of one roaming individual, but there is the possibilty of two birds being present. Great Tit is a relatively regular visitor to Fair Isle, although not annual, but a Blue Tit would cause a lot more interest on the island!
Star billing went to the Hume’s Warbler found by Jason in the same geo that he found Magnolia Warbler in last month! After a brief view during census the bird disappeared, despite much searching. Jason eventually got good views later in the day, but by the time the rest of the wardening team arrived, it had gone to ground again. It did call once just before dusk but didn’t reappear – I’m hoping that it lingers until tomorrow and decides to be more cooperative.
One warbler that was more cooperative was this Chiffchaff at Chalet that showed a lot of positive features for tristis.
Tomorrow’s moderate northerly winds may not be too productive (although I’d not bet against it), but the various changes of wind direction over the weekend, with calmer weather, a day of westerlies then back to the SE could well be very interesting.
Even without stacks of new migrants, the birding is very pleasant, with plenty of birds about, such as these Bramblings and Snow Bunting at the Obs cover crop at the Skadan.

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