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Saturday, 30 April 2011

First Dotterel and Lesser Whitethroat of the year

Female Dotterel at the golf course

  Just before 08.00 I was watching 2 Common Sandpiper, 5 Bar-tailed Godwit and 9 Whimbrel at Porthloo when Tony called to tell me that he had just found a female Dotterel at the golf course! After I had done a taxi I arrived at the car park to watch the bird flying off east, over my bloody house and out of sight. When I turned to look at Tony, there was a male Ring Ouzel in front of me on the fairway.
  Half an hour later, I pulled up at the Star Castle accommodation and as I got out the wagon, I could hear 2 Chiffchaff and a Wood Warbler in full song above me in the pines. When I looked for the latter species, I flushed a male Whitethroat and at the same time Tony called to say that the Dotterel had returned. This time I connected with this stunning plover on the deck where it showed at close range for everyone present.

Wood Warbler in full song at Star Castle 

A stunning Female Dotterel and male Ring Ouzel at golf course The two top superb shots, Martin Goodey and third one down, Robin Mower  

At 11.00 I was at Porth Hellick with the others and we heard a Grasshopper Warbler at the beginning of the loop trail and eventually briefly saw it on top of the brambles. A Cuckoo was on the far side, a single Sand Martin over the pool and small numbers of Reed and Sedge Warbler, Blackcap and Chiffchaff were singing with a single Willow Warbler. On the down there were 15+Wheatear and in off the sea, 6 Swallow. Infact there were good numbers of Swallow moving straight through the island throughout the day. 2 Whimbrel were also on the beach .

Later I was in the ISBG hide at Lower Moors and I could hear the first Lesser Whitethroat of the year rattling near the opposite hide. Like the Dotterel, this is the first spring Scilly Lesser Whitethroat that I've seen for a very long time! I called all the year listers and then made my way over to where I could still hear it. It was not until Robin and Mark arrived that I finally saw it and after a good ten minutes it showed itself pretty well. However, it had moved through when the other three turned up. 

At Green Farm there were 5 Wheatear, up to 6 Blackcap in the same bush together, a Swift flew straight through and a female Ring Ouzel was feeding in a field next to the main track. While I was observing the ouzel, I heard a Fieldfare from behind and looked up to see it fly low past me towards Maypole. A late Scilly record, but not as late as when I had 5 at Parting Carn on the 2nd May, '98.  
Just before dark, 6 Whimbrel flew east over the house 

Female Ring Ouzel at Green Farm 

A Starling having a piggy back 

Spot Martin in between Robin and Tony on the far side against the Gorse and it looks like Higgo is claiming 2 Dotterel while everyone else is just looking at one!


  1. Good post Spider. That Dotterel looks fantastic. Next staging post Davidstow? I wish !

  2. ref Starling photo-
    Come on Spider surely you know Pigs are the smaller ones with the curly tail ! LOL

  3. Thanks Steve, I think it wont be long until one turns up close in Cornwall

  4. Higgo being his usual charming self ! and is that a bald spot on Richies head ?