Follow by Email

Sunday, 22 August 2010

AQUATIC WARBLER passage in full flow

There has been a big movement of AQUATIC WARBLERS since last weekend in NW France culminating in a site record of 13 birds trapped today at Donges (2 ad, 11 juvs) plus at least another 2 individuals that I saw in the field en route to the nets that were un-ringed and gave superb views perched on rush stems and short reeds. At one stage 3 birds were calling from around me (today I described the call note as being a soft Blackcap "tuc" with a somewhat whip-like quality) and they were apparently quite happy to pose in the open with me in full view 10m away (luckily with bins but without scope or camera) . . . a memorable morning indeed !

On the European section of Surfbirds Julien Gonin has posed some photos of a bird he saw on the channel coast recently and the most striking features such as the open-faced appearance, big supercillium, black crown stripe, dark ear-coverts and black wedge on the back can all be seen well which is exactly what I noted in the field today.

I would encourage English and Irish birders to get out there and spend a few hours scanning the periphery of reedbeds in the first few hours of the morning - this is the peak period for Aquatics and the presence of 2 in Wales suggests some are well west of their normal migration corridor. They really are a stunning bird and worth every effort (Eugene Archer)