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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!

Friday 29 April 2011

Bar-wits and Whimbrels

Whimbrel and 3 Bar-tailed Godwit at Porthloo 

The NNE wind in the last few day has made it very quiet on the bird front. This morning there was a female Ring Ouzel on the golf course and a drive down the road found 6 Bar-tailed Godwit with over 30 Whimbrel at Porthloo. 5 Whimbrel were also at Bants Carn this evening and I heard a Cuckoo from the garden mid afternoon.   

Female Ring Ouzel and male Blackbird at the golf course 

Up to 6 Bar-tailed Godwits and 30+Whimbrel were at Porthloo  

Hebrew Character in the house 

Sunset this evening from Bants Carn 

Yesterday I had a short walk around the Garrison and got 2 Blackcap, 4 of each Willow Warbler and Chiffchaff and later in the afternoon, a single Swift flew over work. At Porth Hellick there were 3 Sand and
35+House Martin and 220+Swallow over the pool with 10 Whimbrel also flying over. 
Up to over 220 Swallow were at Porth Hellick yesterday with 35+House and 3 Sand Martin. 

If your wondering what happened to the Blues Brothers? Well here one of them cutting the grass at work. The small compost tip to the right has attracted in the past, Iceland Gull and together, 2 LAUGHING GULL!!

Wednesday 27 April 2011

First Hobby of the year

Male Greenland Wheatear at the Garrison  

A Hobby flew straight through at Lower Moors and was my first of the year. This morning there were 2 Skylark and 10+Wheatear on the golf course, a Tree Pipit at Trenowth and a quick look at Porth Hellick found a few hirundines and on the beach 3 Whimbrel.  

2 Skylark at the golf course 

 Pair of Wheatear, Garrison 

Grey Pine Carpet Moth, Garrison Campsite 

Moorhen chick, Porthloo Duck Pond  

Whimbrel at Porth Hellick  

Tree Pipit at Trenowth 

Arctosa perita, a Wolfspider, at Trenbowth was a new one for me

 It's always greener on the otherside!

Looking from Bants Carn this evening 

Monday 25 April 2011


  Yesterday Tony, Chris and Martin trapped the adult PURPLE HERON in the ditch at Lower Moors and took it the vet Heike. She examined the bird and as everyone had thought, it was weak from starvation. She passed it onto Steve Griff, who has looked after 4 Grey Heron in similar conditions, and successfully released three of the birds. Unfortunately the Purple Heron didn't make it through the night.    


Small Copper, Telegraph 

Comma Butterfly, Telegraph 

Male Linnet, Carn Friars 

Male Kestrel, Bar Point  

Saturday 23 April 2011

PURPLE HERON on it's last legs!

  Got a call from Paul Semmen's to tell me that the adult PURPLE HERON was showing down to a few meters in the ditch at Lower Moors! I was there with in minutes and as I approached Paul, Robin and Mark, the heron got up from just below them and flew head hight and landed directly in front me! This was the first time that I had seen this bird since I found it less than three weeks ago, 3rd April. However, this was not the way I wanted to see it. Being so close, looking rough on the side of the neck and a limp on the right leg, it was obvious that it was not in good shape. More people arrived and we all decided that we should try and catch it, but as Chris and I approached it, it only just managed to get up and fly over the reeds towards the hides. We let it go and later on it was found in the same ditch further up towards Old Town. 

Adult PURPLE HERON Robin Mower 

Adult PURPLE HERON not in good shape at Lower Moors  

Male WOODCHAT SHRIKE still present at Giants Castle. Also there was a flyover Tree Pipit 

Up to 8 Bar-tailed Godwit and 3 Whimbrel were at Bants Carn 

At least 9 Sedge Warbler and 5 Reed Warbler were singing at Porth Hellick with the Grasshopper Warbler still reeling at the loop trail. There were also over 100 Swallow and 10 of each House and Sand Martin 

A walk along the beach at Bar Point