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Saturday, 26 March 2011

S/P Slavonian Grebe at Porthcressa

S/P Slavonian Grebe at Porthcressa Bay Martin Goodey

  I awoke to thick fog this morning, but by 11.00 the fog gave way to bright warm sunshine. I arranged to meet Higgo at Porth Hellick first thing, hoping to see yesterdays Bluethroat. However, there was no sign of the bird and there was no sign of Higgo! 8 Sand Martin were over the pool and a single Willow Warbler and 6+Chiffchaff were singing. At Carn Friars there was a single Fieldfare in the pine belt, single Brambling and Blackcap and only 11 Golden Plover were on the beach with 3 Greenshank.

 Dence fog covering Porth Hellick

Fieldfare at Carn Friars, if you can make it out in the foggy conditions?

  I had twenty minutes off work and a walk across the football field to the shop of the campsite, produced a single Willow Warbler and White Wagtail, 6 Pied Wagtail, including the dusky individual that's been present here now for fifteen days, lots of Robin and a cracking male Black Redstart. Another male was also showing well on the roofs near the chemist in town.

Willow Warbler at the campsite, Garrison  

Male Black Redstart at the campsite, Garrison with Sallyport in the background  

Over 25 Robins were at the Star Castle/football field area 

  A call from Higgo, just after 12.00, found me at Porthcressa with in seconds. Ren had gone and found a summer plumage Slavonian Grebe in the bay! This was the first time that Ren, Martin and I, have ever seen one in this plumage! Although it had not completed it's moult, it was still a very smart bird to observe as it graced the area called the Pilchard Pool. It was still present at 17.30, but distant. I gave Higgo a lift to Porth Hellick on the way to the airport and as we passed Sandy Banks, 2 Swallow flew by.

S/P Slavonian Grebe at Porthcressa in crap light! 

Birders and non-birders enjoying Ren's find! Note how Ritchie is always in the crowd shots!

  Mid-afternoon and I was observing up to 11 Black Redstart at Bants Carn, including a single male. An immature male Sparrowhawk also flew through and 10+Robin were in the area.

This female Stonechat was a new arrival at Carn Morval and showed a lot of white on the wings than usual. 

Up to 11 Black Redstart were feeding together at Bant's Carn! 

  Later after work, I walked from the airfield to Porth Helleck. There was a male Weatear and 3 Black Redstart at Giants Castle and as I approached PH, 19 Sand Martin flew out high, SE. In the hides I met Higgo and Robin who had seen a Reed Bunting earlier. 

The Scillonian made it's first crossing of the year from Penzance.     


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