Follow by Email

Monday, 31 January 2011

KILLDEER makes landfall on Islay, Argyll

A total of 246 species has now been recorded in Britain and Ireland in 2011, with today's KILLDEER the first recorded since 2009.

The finder of St Kilda's Blackburnian Warbler chanced upon this morning's KILLDEER on Islay (Argyll) - Mr Will Miles. The bird was watched at close range on the beach at Lossit Bay before it flew off calling but was not relocated.

A very confiding juvenile BLACK-THROATED DIVER was a popular attraction at Ryder's Mere, Clayhanger Marsh (West Midlands) in recent days but flew off west shortly before midday, whilst the regularly returning adult winter PACIFIC DIVER continues to feed fairly close inshore in Mount's Bay, generally between the Windsurfer's Car Park at Marazion Beach and 500 yards to the west. Few RED-NECKED GREBES appear inland these days so singles at Fairhaven Lake (Lancs) and Grafham Water (Cambs) are noteworthy.

It has been an exceptional winter for GREAT WHITE EGRETS with a record-breaking flock of 6 at the Ham Walls RSPB reserve at Shapwick Heath (Somerset), the two returning birds at Pitsford Reservoir (Northants) and the French colour-ringed adult at Mockbeggar Lake and Ibsley Water in Hampshire and a regular winterer at Hoveringham Sailing Lake (Notts).

A EURASIAN SPOONBILL remains present on the Sea Pool between Cley and Salthouse (North Norfolk) for its third day, with 8 in Poole Harbour (Dorset) and 5 in North Devon at Isley Marsh.

The first-winter RED-BREASTED GOOSE was seen today with Pink-footed Geese in the field south of the car park just west of Fluke Hall (North Lancashire), whilst the adult remains with Dark-bellied Brent Geese at Solent Breezes (Hants) in the large field west of Lower Brownwich Farm. A further 11 birds of unknown origin continue to be seen at further sites in southern Britain, including all 5 (pair and three first-winters) now back in coastal Suffolk. Meanwhile, the adult LESSER WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE of unknown but perhaps introduced origin appears to have departed the Cantley Marshes RSPB and Yare Valley (Norfolk) with half of the wintering Taiga Bean Geese (reduced from 102 to 58 in past week).

An adult SNOW GOOSE is still present with Greylag Geese at Gremista (Shetland), with 1 of 3 ROSS'S SNOW GEESE in Norfolk still being seen in the east of the county with the Pink-footed Geese grazing the Haddiscoe Levels.

A drake AMERICAN WIGEON has been present for several days at Martnaham Loch (Ayrshire), with the long-staying drake still on the Serpentine by East Bank, Cley NWT (Norfolk) and another near Tingwall on Shetland, whilst a drake RING-NECKED DUCK continues to show well in West Cornwall at St Gothian Sands LNR (at SW 585 418). Another drake of the latter can also be found at Cowpen Bewley Woodland Park (Cleveland), with a further on the Thornton ICI Reservoir in Lancashire. Just two LESSER SCAUPS are being seen of late: the first-winter female on the Rushy Pen at Slimbridge WWT (Gloucs) and the adult drake (presumably a returning bird) at Colliford Lake, Bodmin Moor (Cornwall), in the Loveney NR arm. Dependable SURF SCOTERS include just one single adult drake in Largo Bay (Fife) and the adult female off Dawlish Warren (South Devon).

The juvenile WHITE-TAILED SEA EAGLE is still present at Hordle in South Hampshire, ranging between the woodland west of Hordle Lane just north of the Milford road and its favoured roost trees to the west of Angel Lane about a mile to the west, whilst in North Norfolk, the juvenile Hen Harrier showing characteristics of the Nearctic form hudsonicus remains faithful to the saltmarsh.east of Thornham Harbour.

At the extreme north end of the Shetland Islands, at least one ROUGH-LEGGED BUZZARD remains on Unst (at Vaila Field), with other wintering birds still being reliably seen at South Ferriby (North Lincs) and in the Holkham Freshmarsh/Scolt Head Island areas (up to 5).

Dorset's wintering LONG-BILLED DOWITCHER was relocated today in Poole Park, Bournemouth, where it was frequenting the large lake visble from the roadside by the old Swan Lake Cafeteria.

A twitchable LITTLE AUK survived a couple of days in Scarborough Harbour (North Yorks)

Wintering SHORE LARKS are still to be found at Titchwell Beach (Norfolk) (9), Cley Beach (11), Dingle Marshes, Walberswick (Suffolk) (11) and Reculver Marshes (Kent) (3). A single has also been seen frequently at Carnforth Beach (Lancs).

Up to 5 gorgeous WHITE-HEADED CONTINENTAL LONG-TAILED TITS (Caudatus) continue to roam with 10 of their British counterparts around the churchyard and adjacent well-stocked gardens at the north end of Dymchurch (East Kent)

A first-winter ROSE-COLOURED STARLING has been visiting a suburban garden in Penzance (West Cornwall) for over two weeks now (at Weethes Cottages), whilst SCANDINAVIAN ARCTIC REDPOLLS have included at least three different individuals at Rainton Meadows (Co. Durham), three in Bedfordshire and a single in Bell's Wood, Whiteadder Reservoir (Lothian).

LAPLAND BUNTINGS still remain plentiful following last autumn's record bounty, with 36 WNW of Port Eynon at Paviland (Glamorgan) (SS 453 853), 4 at Buckton (East Yorks), up to 14 at Cut Bridge, Sturt Pond (Hants), at least 40 at Chyvarloe, Gunwalloe (Cornwall), 25 at Weybourne (Norfolk) and up to 60 along the South Wall at Breydon Water (Norfolk).

In IRELAND, the SPOONBILL is still to be found at Courtmacsherry Quay (County Cork), the adult winter FORSTER'S TERN remains in Galway Bay just east of the Mutton Island causeway, the AMERICAN COOT at Termoncarragh Lake (Co. Mayo) and the adult female BLUE-WINGED TEAL on North Bull Island (Co. Dublin). The CENTRAL ASIATIC LESSER WHITETHROAT remains in Drogheda.

The first-winter drake SURF SCOTER in the Great island area near Cobh (Co. Cork) was most recently reported off Aghada Pier and Ballybrassil, with the INDIAN HOUSE CROW nearby at Cobh Town.