Wednesday 14 October 2015

14th October 2015

Weather:  ESE 0-1, 10 miles, slight frost at dawn, increasing sunshine throughout the day

A lovely still morning on the island and observers arriving early were immediately aware of a minor thrush movement with three Song Thrushes and a Blackbird leaving Middle calling and heading high.

On the main island both species were present but only a solitary Song Thrush was caught and ringed.

At least seven Goldcrests were present today (after only a single yesterday) and there was a definite increase in Wrens with two new birds caught.  Up to four Reed Buntings could be heard and then seen down on the island at various points during the day.  Three Starlings (two and a single) were seen on various island vantage points.

However, visible migration was slow but for small numbers of Mipits, Skylark, Redpoll, Goldfinch and Greenfinch passed over with three of the latter being caught in the Old Obs garden mist net.

There were at least four Rock Pipits around the main island today and we were delighted to catch another new bird in the potter traps; however this is the peak month for passage birds so we do not know whether this was a Hilbre bred bird or a visitor from elsewhere. 

The Brents spent the tide around the larger two islands today and a party of Pintail (20) were watched heading north-east off the North End and visibility had increased to such an extent that the Lake District was just visible in the distance.

The sea was a little quiet although at least 25 Great Crested Grebe were counted and small parties of Common Scoter could be seen back off the East Hoyle sandbank and an early drake Scaup associated with a pair of Common Scoter for a while as the tide flooded.

With the sun out it felt more like August than October and the butterflies thought so too with several Red Admirals and this single Painted Lady taking advantage of the unseasonal temperatures.

Ringing: 4 Goldcrest, 2 Wren, Meadow Pipit, Rock Pipit, 3 Greenfinch and a Song Thrush 

(JE, AEH, CJ, CJW, NDW et al) [563-40]

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