Thursday, 3 July 2014

3rd July 2014

Weather: WSW 3, 8/8 cloud, good vis

Vying for quietest day of the year on the bird front today produced a single Ringed Plover, a Pied Wagtail and a Grey Heron.

A few butterflies provided some interest with two each of Red Admiral, Green-veined White and Meadow Brown and a single Small Tortoiseshell.

(GB from over)

Wednesday, 2 July 2014

2nd July 2014

Weather: S 1, 0/8 cloud, good vis but hazy

News of the Orchid, found on Sunday, filtered through to the mainland and was duly twitched by a couple of members.

Common Spotted Orchid - photographed on Sunday with more flowers showing (DB)

The first Willow Warbler of the autumn arrived and presumably the same  Whitethroat from yesterday was still present.  A juvenile Pied Wagtail remained around the islands and a Common Sandpiper was noted.

Chrysis ignita (BSB)

Meanwhile a couple of Chrysis ignita were found in the Obs (see above). These are a Ruby-tailed Wasp, a cuckoo (nest parasite) of species including Mason Bees.


Tuesday, 1 July 2014

1st July 2014

Weather: S 1, 0/8 cloud, moderate vis but hazy

Six Redshank were seen today and a Whitethroat was present on the island.

A drake Eider drifted off the North End by the Tide Guage.


Sunday, 29 June 2014

29th June 2014

Weather: NE 3, 5/8 cloud, exceptional vis with Black Combe visible (in the South West corner of the Lake District NP)

The last day of coverage for June did not disappoint with an exceptional record for the island ... an Orchid was found growing in one of the West Side gardens.

It has been identified as a Common Spotted Orchid - see photos below.

Common Spotted Orchid - July 2014 (photo BSB)

This is the first Orchid to be found on the islands since a Pyramidal Orchid was present on Hilbre in 1979 (photo below by the late John Gittins - founder member of the Obs; from the Obs archive).

Common Spotted Orchid - July 2014 (BSB)
Pyramidal Orchid - 1979 (the late JCG)

Ornithologically it was a fairly quiet day but two juvenile Pied Wagtails, 7 Swallows, a female Common Scoter, a male Kestrel again and two Little Egrets were recorded.


Friday, 27 June 2014

27th June 2014

Weather: ESE 2-3, 8/8 cloud, good vis

A family party of 5 Ravens, presumably those seen on 25th, landed on the island next to the main pond.

Waders were again in evidence with 44 Curlew, single Whimbrel, 2 Turnstone and a Redshank recorded.

A male and a single juvenile Pied Wagtail were seen again.

The sea was very quiet but an increase in Common Scoters was evident with 116 birds counted.


Thursday, 26 June 2014

26th June 2014

Weather: SE 3, 8/8 cloud, excellent vis

Single Turnstone and Redshank were noted today along with 38 Curlew and 1,700 Oystercatchers - no doubt encouraging the appearance of a Peregrine.

A single male Kestrel also visited the islands today no doubt looking for voles but the some of the breeding birds were also fledging with a juvenile Robin notable.

13 Swifts passed over and a single Raven was seen again on the East Hoyle.  


Wednesday, 25 June 2014

25th June 2014

Weather: SSE 3, cloud 7/8, excellent vis

More evidence of wader passage was observed today with a single Whimbrel and 28 Curlew seen but also a single summer plumaged Turnstone came 'in off' the sea to the North End from the North West.  The first seen since 6th June on the islands.

A  Common Sandpiper was also at the North End.

As well as 400 Black-headed Gulls, 3 Common Gulls were recorded and tern numbers increase slightly with 25 Common and 50 Sandwich.

A couple of Pied Wagtails were recorded and 27 Swifts passed over the islands.

The highlight of the day was a party of five Ravens sat on the East Hoyle sand bank opposite the Obs feeding on a dead Common Scoter.