Sunday 30 April 2023

30th April 2023

 Weather:  SE force 1    spots nof rain at dawn, heavy rain an hour later

A damp start did not prevent  a good number of warblers arriving during the morning but the highlight for the observers was the appearance of our second Osprey of the year later in the morning when the rain relented. The bird was hovering to the east of the island obviously intent on catching a fish. 




The Osprey ignored the attention of the shorebirds that were mobbing it, despite one Oystercatcher pursuing it vigorously.


 Moving slightly further out from the island the bird eventually caught a flatfish and landed on bird rock (towards Red Rocks) to eat. Moving to the east hoyle sands the Osprey fed again until disturbed when it floated east carrying its prize towards the north shore.


Before the main rain arrived (and indeed afterwards) Willow Warblers continued to be still dropping into the gardens and paddocks, at the end of the morning period 26 had been ringed.out of 35 arrivals.

 . Greenland Wheatears numbers were also impressive at 31 seen today.


   Two Whinchats stayed about the island, one pictured here with  one of the Wheatears.,


Four Blackcaps and a Whitethroat were also on the ground,


 ... while 6 Tree Pipits and a yellow Wagtail called overhead and 9 White Wagtails were logged. Apart from the 50 or so Linnets they were 3 Sisikin, 5 Redpoll and 4 Goldfinches. Fourteen Swallows and 15 Sand martins fed about while passing through. A single Purple Sandpiper is a late stayer (or passage arrival) we cannot tell for sure.

 A few Common Terns were on the sea and some of the 40 Sandwich Terns settled on the rocks.



There were 8 Whimbrel. A summer plumaged Guillemot was at the north end.

The 3 Eiders are still making Hilbre their reidence. All in all a splendid day after a soggy start.

Ringed:  26 Willow Warblers, 7 Linnets, 2 Blackcaps, 1 Greenland Wheatear, 1 Goldfinch.

 Photos AEH, CJW, SRW

Saturday 29 April 2023

29th April 2023

Weather: SSE force 2,  NNE 2 by the afternoon

 Without a doubt the highlight of the day was a Cuckoo flyimg from Little Eye towards the West Kirby shore. We all know they migrate but they are seldom seen in the area.

 The rest of the migration followed on from recent days, 2 Blackcaps, 3 Whitethroats and  14 Willow Warblers were here today.

Three Yellow Wagtails were again recorded and finches featuring were 15 Goldficnh and 4 Redpolls.



Hirundines numbered 56 Swallow and 18 Sand Martins but there were none of the many House Martins of yesterday. The Greenland Wheatears keep on coming, 12 today, there were 2 White Wagtails plus a Grey. The 3 Eider are still here and 6 Little Egrets showed up today. Three Guillemot were noted and 8 Gannets seen on the evening tide, while during the day 25 Common and 60 Sandwich Terns were around the island.


 Lots of Dunlin were flying around and 38 Ringed Plover were logged, There were only 5 Curlew seen but a massive 69 Whimbrel calling here on passage.

 A Common Sandpiper was found later in the day.


 Two Silver Y moths were the only moths in the trap this morning.


 Ringed: 12 Willow Warblers, 2 Whitethroats, 1 Blackcap, 1 Redpoll, 1 Goldfinch, 2 Linnets,

 Photos; CJW, SRW

Friday 28 April 2023

28th April 2023

 Weather: E force 0/1, later NW 2/3

Some of our missing spring species turned up this morning, and 2 male Whitethroats were definately here for the first time.


 Likewise a Whinchat perched prominently as they do to announce its presence.

Also in line to be welcomed to the island was our first Sedge Warbler.


The 3 Blackcaps that arrived were not a new species, a small number have been here over the last few days.



Willow Warblers (about 15 on the island) and Greenland Wheatears (3) continued to arrive today, while Swallows also passed through but House Martins took special attention with 24 feeding over the island this morning.

 Three Yellow Wagtails were noted, but no Tree Pipits today. Common Terns (45) outnumbered Sandwich Terns (35) for the first time this year.

Wader numbers were low but a summer plumaged Grey Plover and 16 Whimbrel were noteworthy and a Common Sandpiper.was present. The 3 Eider are still here and 8 Shelduck were displaying near the gutter.

Ringed:  10 Willow Warblers, 2 Whitethroat, 2 Blackcap, 1 Sedge Warbler, 2 Linnets,

 Photos: CJW, SRW

Thursday 27 April 2023

27th April 2023

 Weather: ESE force 5

 A cold and windy start to the day with only a couple of Blackcaps and one or two Willow Warblers in the paddocks, and a Yellow Wagtail calling overhead. As the morning progressed more Willow Warblers appeared on the island.



 A male Blackcap was caught for ringing


 A couple of Tree Pipits were heard and lats of Goldfinches arrived.

  also later on a Chaffinch.

  One of the 2 Redpolls also became ringed.

While all this was going on a few Greenland Whearears were feeding in the open places about the island.


 A Yellow Wagtail came down near the north end of the island giving an oppertunity for photos.


Other Wagtails were 5 Whites and a Pied. There was only a small passage of hirundines today, just 2 House Martins, 3 Swallows and 6 Sand Martins.


Early afternoon the Willow Warblers were still arriving and then a surprise was a Grasshopper the SK trap.

Apart from the small passerines, other species today included a Raven about the south west cornoer of the island, and wildfowl including 2 Goosander, the 3 Eider and the regular commuting 2 Canada Geese. Twelve Gannets fished out to sea, and about 30 Sandwich Terns did the same of the east side of the island. A distant flock of flock of Knot was on the move in the morning.

Twenty Two Whimbrel were calling around the island,

and Ringed Plover, Dunlin and Bar-tailed Godwits were also ready to move north.Seven Little Egrets were a good number compared to the last few weeks. A single Grey Heron was here today.

 Ringed: 16 Willow Warblers, 4 Goldfinches, 1 Blackcap,1 Wren, 1 Redpoll, 1 Grasshopper Warbler.

 Photos: AEH,CJW,SRW