Black-tailed Godwit at Porth Hellick
I joined Jacklin and Jim first thing this morning, in the foggy conditions, at the ringing station at Porth Hellick. Before I got there, I heard 3 Willow Warbler and 10+Chiffchaff. On the pool, a single Swallow with 23 Sand Martin and the male Merlin flew through. We trapped, a single Chiffchaff and Robin and 2 Great Tit and just before 10.00, Jim and I left Jacklin to continue ringing.
Male Great Tit
Chiffchaff. Note the pollen at the base of the bill, indercating that this bird is a newly arrival.
In town, there was a single House and Sand Martin above the main street and at 10.15, I headed straight to quay. From here, Robin was going to Tresco, Higgo, St Martins and myself, St Agnes. I picked the short straw! Except for good numbers of Willow Warbler, Black Redstart and Robin and at St Warne's Well, a single continental Song Thrush and Redwing, there was nothing else of note. I covered almost all the island, but only half of the plantation on Gugh, as I only had half an hour left before I caught the boat back at 15.45. There were up to 11 Black Redstart, including 3 males, at Periglis Cove, but talking to Doug Page later, he told me that he had 18 birds first thing this morning. There were 20+Willow Warbler, 12 on Gugh, and a total of 80+Robin!
TOTALS FOR ST AGNES AND GUGH
I CONTINENTAL SONG THRUSH
20 BLACK REDSTART
3 WHITE WAGTAIL
7 PIED WAGTAIL
6 SAND MARTIN
1 GOLDEN PLOVER
St Agnes Lighthouse appearing out of the fog with the Big Pool in the foreground
Contintental Song Thrush was feeding with a Redwing at St Warne's Well
Meadow Pipit, male Wheatear and female Kestrel, St Warne's Cove
Male Blackcap at the Birdcage
I found 4 male Bibio lanigerus on Gugh
Six-spotted Burnet Moth caterpiller on Gugh
The ramains of a Robin kill at Periglis.
When I returned to St Mary's, Robin saw a Short-eared Owl and Higgo, a female Reed Bunting, that showed very well and 18 Black Redstart. The fog was still lingering as I returned to Porth Hellick at 17.30, and here I met Robin just leaving. I noticed there was a slight increase in Willow Warbler numbers from this morning and as I was talking to Robin, 4 birds moved through together with a single Chiffchaff. In the end, I had a total of 8 Willow Warbler, 5 Chiffchaff and 3 Blackcap. There was also an increase in hirundines with, 3 Swallow and 50+Sand Martin. As I walked between the two hides, I heard a Black-tailed Godwit coming in! There's only a handful of Blackwits seen on Scilly each year. So, I called everyone before I got to the Sussex hide to have a look. Sure enough, right in front of me, was a Black-tailed Godwit. It was just beginning to moult into summer plumage, with a tad of dark barring on the belly, a few dark markings on the upperparts and an orangy neck. Robin arrived with in seconds and in the ten minutes he was there, we observed a female Sparrowhawk briefly unsuccessfully try to chase a Sand Martin! A short time later, I heard the female CETTI'S WARBLER calling to the left of the hide on and off! Jim trapped it over a week ago and that was the first time it had been seen this year! Robin returned again, but it had already gone to roost by the time he arrived. However, as we both approached the gate at the crossroads, I looked to my left and shouted 'Long-eared Owl'! It passed by at close range, but was silhouetted and flew up towards Porth Hellick House and landed on top of the tallest pine. After a few minutes, it was off again, towards Holy Vale.
Black-tailed Godwit at Porth Hellick
Part of the flock of 50+Sand Martin at Porth Hellick
Can you make out the LEO in the center on top of the pine? No, niether can I, but it's there!
A slow start on St Agnes, but a good end to the day!
Shanty taking a liking to my camara!