Sunday, 10 May 2015

10th May 2015

Weather: SSE 2, 8/8 cloud, rain before dawn, good vis

It rained before dawn and there still felt like moisture in the air as observers headed to the island and despite the southerly wind being a little cool flycatchers were mentioned by the ever optimistic Obs team.

Spotted Flycatcher (Brian Tollitt)
The first female Redstart of the year appeared on the West side of the Newton trap and quickly entered and was caught and ringed.

A single Willow Warbler was also caught and it was generally a day of quality not quantity with single Whitethroat and Sedge Warbler also seen.

The local gulls were clearly disturbed by something early morning but nothing materialised until a Short-eared Owl was chased between the islands by a Crow. Photographs of the owl revealed it briefly had some seaweed around its talons so had presumably alighted on rocks South of the main island.  It soon shook off its seaweed and its pursuer but headed off high towards the West Hoyle before retracing its steps and heading east over the East Hoyle and eventually towards Red Rocks gaining height as it went to avoid the now almost constant attention of Herring Gulls.

Hirundines passed through all morning with Sand Martins a particular feature with 30+ counted, along with over 200 Swallows and 25 House Martins as well as 3 Swifts.

At least 20 Whimbrel were noted around the islands and small flocks of Dunlin alighted in the usual places but there felt like an increase in Ringed Plover numbers today.

At about 11am a round of the traps produced the hoped for first Spotted Flycatcher of the year in the 'Newton'.

Garden Tiger Moth Caterpillars are much
in evidence around the main island at the moment

Thrift is now putting on its usual May show around
the West Side and North End of the islands

A second Spotted Flycatcher was found early afternoon along with a female Blackcap both caught and ringed.

Meanwhile, the pair of Rock Pipits were noted along with the singing Skylark and Linnets were also in evidence.

(AEH, BT+MR, AW, GIW, PSW and SRW) [315-33]  Photos by BT, PSW and SRW

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