Saturday 14 April 2012

14th April 2012

The obs hosted a joint RSPB/Wirral Rangers arranged visit this morning in which the visitors were given a tour of the observatory and an explanation of its work, and fortunately despite it being a quiet bird day they were able to see 2 birds ringed. Both the obs members and the visitors enjoyed each others company on a cool but sunny start to the day. A lone Willow Warbler was on the island this morning, the first warbler to arrive for 5 days at a time when favourable weather conditions can sometimes produce the best Willow Warbler falls of the spring. The Blackcap is still around and 3 Wheatears today were an improvement on recent days, although Swallows (10) were down on yesterday and there were no Sand Martins. A small number of Goldfinches , a Lesser Redpoll and a few Pied Wagtails went through as the only small migrants until just after noon a Blue Tit (below, scarcest Hilbre bird of the day) appeared by the 'heli' trap following a squall but refused to be trapped for ringing. Fleeting larger visitors today included 2 Wood Pigeons and a Magpie. Sandwich Terns numbered about 200, and the first 4 Common Terns of the year were noted amongst the passage, also a small number of Gannets and 10 Great Crested Grebes. The Merlin showed well for the RSPB visitors, as did 3 Purple Sandpipers. Sanderling on the shore are always pleasing little waders to see and 40 were noted today. Only about 50 Brent were found today but there may be more still about. Ringed:- 1 Linnet, 1 Willow Warbler. (DB,AEH,CJ,PSW, Colin Wells et al) [ 313-20] photos CJ

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