Tuesday, 29 March 2011

29th March 2011

Meadow Pipits went streaming through more than ever this morning, first of all in clouds of 50 or so at a time, then later in smaller groups of up to a dozen, and the total up to midday was estimated at approximately 1,700 birds, although there were probably many more. They were all travelling south as most migrants do at Hilbre whether it be spring or autumn. The two highlights of the day were 2 obs firsts for the year. A Sandwich Tern appeared out of the mist briefly at the north end (right), and towards midday a Willow Warbler was found in the bottom shelf of the garden mist net but jumped out before it could be ringed. It seemed to be a bright, large male type with long wings but unfortunately could not be examined closely. Other migrants included 4 Goldcrests, 1 Chiffchaff, 2 Wheatears (left), 8 Pied Wagtails and a Starling with the usual few finches represented by 2 Siskins, 4 Goldfinches, and 2 Greenfinches. The 6 Sand Martins were all seen late in the morning when the sun broke through. A Jackdaw was heard and a Little Egret arrived between the islands but did not stay. The Common Seal (surely the most photographed mammal in Wirral at present) was in shell bay, both lazing on the rocks and swimming in the clear water. Ten Gannets flew north in the mist and the female/immature Merlin is still on station south of Middle but a male also showed well as it flew south down the east side of the island. Ringed:- 1 Chiffchaff, 1 Goldcrest, 1 Meadow Pipit. (DB,CJ) [88] photos CJ

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