Saturday, 25 October 2014

25th October 2014

Weather : SSW 3, later WSW 4/5
A Blackcap on the island this morning was unexpected in the fresh south westerlies but welcome nonetheless. Two Reed Buntings also visited, one of which came down on the ground for a short while, and then later in the morning a Chiffchaff was found by the 'heli' trap, but disappeared and was not seen again. There seemed to be quite a few Wrens about today, hinting at a small movement through of these little creatures which are sometimes regarded as purely sedentary. Several Starling flocks moved about including one large group over towards the West Kirby shore, and the odd Skylark was heard as they passed over. Not much action today on the sea although 4 Red-throated Divers and a couple of Guillemots were seen. The Brent were counted in flight  at 75 birds, just short of the peak total so far this autumn/winter. Two hundred and eighty Curlew rested south of Little on the flood tide, while at high tide 110 Turnstones, 53 Redshanks, 26 Bar-tailed Godwits and 3 Little Egrets were noted  with 6,000 Oystercatchers roosting on Middle.
Ringed : 1 Blackcap (right), 1 Wren                  [ 932-37 ]
(DB,CJ,KMc) + Dave Steel, Dave Bowman and a small group from Woolston (thanks for the cake!)

Friday, 24 October 2014

24th October 2014

Weather : S force 1, mild
A new record for the winter of 1125 Cormorants flew out of the estuary at dawn, and 400 Bar-tailed Godwits were seen to fly north at the flood tide. The east hoyle bank produced 348 Curlew and 48 Grey Plover and flocks of  31 Skylarks and 30 Starlings both flying west. Two late Goldcrests were in the paddocks today.
(DB)

Thursday, 23 October 2014

23rd October 2014

Weather : S force 1
A fairly brief visit was quite fruitful with a male Stonechat recorded on the island, also a Merlin was seen flying north. Twenty one Carrion Crows and a Rock Pipit were on Little Eye, with another Rock Pipit at the north end, while wader counts on the flood tide included 54 Grey Plovers and 500 Knot both flying north, 190 Curlew, 150 Dunlin and 76 Redshank. The only small migrants were 5 Skylarks and a Pied Wagtail.
(DB)

Wednesday, 22 October 2014

22nd October 2014

Weather : WNW 7 with squalls, later WSW 4/5 some drizzle
Following the passage of low pressure 'Gonzalo', a sea watch was the option for many birders today as intense storms have been noticeably absent so far this autumn. The wind was still quite strong early in the day and the first Hilbre Leach's Petrel of the year appeared before the high tide (record shot right). It was not to be one of the famous Leach's days on Wirral and just one more appeared during the sea watch and no skuas made it on the list. Other sea birds noted were a good count of 60 Razorbills (over 14,000 were at Bardsey this morning !), 45 Gannets, 20 Kittiwakes, 30 Guillemots, 35b Great Crested Grebes, over 200 Common Scoter and 6 Red-throated Divers.
 The long awaited first Purple Sandpiper of the winter arrived at the north end today (left) and the Brent reached a new high of 76 birds. Not surprisingly very little small bird movement although 40 Meadow Pipits were certainly not all residents, neither was the single Skylark over.  Over 800 Cormorants flew out of the estuary at dawn, a new record for the autumn, a Merlin flew west and a female Peregrine was also seen. Waders noted today included 29 Grey Plover flying south, 15 Bar-tailed Godwits, 43 Ringed Plover and 120 Turnstone.
(DB,PSW et al)

Tuesday, 21 October 2014

21st October 2014

A Bonxie and a Manx Shearwater were recorded on the sea today by non members.
(Matt Thomas, Richard Smith)

Monday, 20 October 2014

20th October 2014

Weather : SW force 3/4, rain showers
Fifteen Greylag and 23 Canada Geese flew north over Wirral. Between Little Eye and the marine lake 159 Grey Plovers and 128 Redshanks fed on the tide edge. A Rock Pipit was at Little Eye.
(DB)

Sunday, 19 October 2014

19th October 2014

Wind: SW Force 7-8. Cloud cover 1 to 4/8.
Pressure 29.68 Bar
Temp 17 C
Sandwich Tern
Given the weather conditions not much was expected to turn up on Hilbre but the opportunity was taken to observe the waders at close range by following the tide as it ebbed. Good numbers of the commoner waders were seen but the star bird was a very late Sandwich Tern hunkered down with the gulls between Middle & Hilbre. As expected passerines were few in number but surprisingly a female Chaffinch was found in the Obs garden. Later a female Reed Bunting was located in the SK paddock before moving to the bracken at the south end. A female Wheatear also appeared and was picked up flying down the east side from the Obs balcony before landing in the south end cove. 
Curlew

Oystercatchers

Redshank

Ringed Plover
 (PSW)      all photos PSW