Tuesday 7 May 2013

7th May 2013

Weather SSE 1, cloud 3/8, vis 25 miles
Garden Warbler
 Another beautiful day with some typical May birds. A Garden Warbler found itself in the old obs mist net, the first of its kind seen at Hilbre this spring, and one we can miss out on altogether if we are unlucky. Another Whinchat, not the bird of yesterday arrived at the south end mid-morning but again proved elusive for the ringers, as did the half dozen or so Wheatears on the island today. A Cuckoo was seen flying off from the west side and being mobbed by Swallows, an hour later it again showed itself as it headed purposely towards Red Rocks. Cuckoo is less than an annual occurrence at Hilbre these days. A drake Eider dropped in the sea close by the rocks to the west of the obs, and the Common Scoter that has been around for a while now immediately flew in to join it almost as though he recognised it as a suitable companion.  

About a dozen Willow Warblers were present , also a Whitethroat and a Sedge Warbler that strangely fed on the seaweed at the north end for more than an hour, but did not appear later in the apparently more suitable habitat. Birds passing through today included a Tree Pipit, 2 Yellow Wagtails, 2 White Wagtails, several Lesser Redpolls and Goldfinches, 50 Swallows and a Sand Martin. A surprise at noon was the capture of a Siskin in the Newton heligoland trap, while by no means a rare bird as a migrant it was the first of its kind ringed at Hilbre this year. Whimbrel were in very good numbers, up to 22 today, and the large flocks of Dunlin flying around as the tide pushes in and out were in the order of between 2 and 3 thousand. Seventy Sandwich and 7 Common Terns were logged.


Eider with Common Scoter

Ringed:- 9 Willow Warblers, 1 Garden Warbler, 1 Whitethroat, 1 Lesser Redpoll, 1 Siskin, 1 Linnet, 1 Goldfinch, 1 Meadow Pipit.           [ 413-27 ]
(DB,CJ,DCT,PT,PSW,et al)       photos CJ

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