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Sunday, 19 April 2015


1st winter GREAT BLUE HERON flying off from the Big Pool, Bryher

  Day off, so I decided that I would go and see the GBH that has been spending it's time on the Big Pool, Bryher and nearby area for the last three days. Martin Goodey imformed us that the heron was still present before we arrived and after walking the down with Higgo, we finally went to have a look at it. As we approached the pool we observed it being flushed time after time, not by birders, but visitors that just didn't give a damn about the heron or other people who came to see it. One tourists got too close and it flew off and landed on the otherside. She turned around and tried again to get close to it and it flew off into the Stinking Porth. It was over an hour later that we relocated it feeding in rock pools before it returned back to the pool where it was observed catching large fish. Here it stayed for the rest of the afternoon, getting flushed all over the shop, on some occasions not on purpose, by visitors. The original  finder of the GBH, Bob Dawson, was also with us, enjoying it in the better light instead of dense fog when he first saw it briefly on St Agnes with Graham, before it flew off.

Here it's diving for cover from a Great-black backed Gull

Robin getting close up views with his family when it landed in front of him

Tourists past close by, but the GBH continued to feed

   I spent all my time in the Big Pool area and most of it with the GBH. Yesterdays strong eastlies had subsided and it turned out to be a cracking day. The other highlights were male Redstart, reeling Grasshopper Warbler and my first Wood Warbler of the year. All these birds were in one garden south of the pool. Also seen were 4 Whimbrel, 7 Tree Pipits, 50+Blackcap and Wheatear, 30+Chiffchaff, 20+Willow Warbler and I came across a Wryneck at the entrance of Hell Bay Hotel. Higgo found a Hoopoe in the paddocks and it proved very to be very flighty and maybe had just arrived. Mid afternoon hirindines were coming in off the sea and included, 15+House Martin, 20+Swallow and 3 Sand Martin.

Male Redstart and Wood Warbler in the same garden

and White Wagtail was on the rocks just below the garden

Had this Wryneck near to the hotel

Just before I left Bryher, I had this newly arrived male Black Redstart at Porthcressa

and when I returned from Bryher, my first male Whitethroat was in the pig fields, garrison with Chiffchaff

This Continental Stonechat was on the Garrison

  Also seen on Bryher by other birders included a pair of Pied Flycatcher and another Wood Warbler. Before Robin crossed the channel from Tresco to Bryher at mid-day, he got a Red-rumped Swallow on Pool Road and the Barnicle Goose. However, visiting birders that stayed all day saw a male Garganey and Pied Flycatcher and the male Black Duck and Green-winged Teal. 
  On St Mary's there were Hoopoe, Night Heron, Jack Snipe, 150 hirundines, 1 ring Ouzel, 2 Pied Flycatcher and a single Wood Warbler. 2 Wood Warbler were in Holy Vale yesterday where a adult Night Heron was found dead.

Yesterday I managed to catch up with the Wryneck at Old Town Church that been present since it was observed flying in off the sea six days ago.

Been listening to the film score of the movie 'les yeux fermes'


  1. Excellent GBH photos - best I have seen of this bird.

  2. Thanks. I think there are a lot more better photos out there.