Sunday, 6 May 2012

May 6th - Redpolls, Wheatears and Yellow Wags.

A beautiful morning on the headland this morning. Lots of birds about. Arriving soon after 6am the wind was cold and birds seemed thin on the ground. However, by 11am the place was full of Wheatears with over 100 scattered around the headland, with most being of the Greenland race. 3 Yellow Wagtails flew over, while 2 female Common Redstarts were grounded - one in the limestone hawthorns and another by Pink Farm. A Sedge warbler was in song by the Old cafe and a small fall of Blackcaps had occured with at least 10 males dotted around. Around 10 Willow Warblers included a bird that tried to land on me by the cairn - migration is just superb. A summer plumaged Dunlin pitched down by the cairn at 10.30am but soon moved on. Eight Tree Pipits flew over while a bird was prospecting near the Churchyard, where they have bred for the last few years. A good movement of finches included 50+ Redpolls, the vast majority being Lessers. However one bird was much paler. I would have happily called it a Mealy if it wasn't for the problems Bardsey have had with this type of bird this year. A Redpoll, but not from around here! 25+ Siskins, 20+ Goldfinch and a light passage of Swifts, Swallows and House Martins too. Over 50 Sandwhich Terns moved east offshore as well as 50+ Gannets involved in a feeding frenzy.
This Redpoll (above) was pale and slightly larger than the brown streaky looking birds we are used to seeing (like the oen below)
Swallows were moving through today and a few birds have settled to breed.
A good movement of Wheatears included some cracking Greenland birds like this amle above. Some of them posed superbly with several giving this upright stance like this female below.

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