Monday, 20 April 2015

From Scandinavia To Siberia

I had another good day at the Obs yesterday and it started at first light when I met Kim to do some ringing on the coast. We had clear skies with a 5 mph northeasterly wind and then within a couple of hours the cloud cover increased to 8 oktas. It's a pity the cloud cover didn't develop during the night as it might have dropped a few more migrants in.

There was some vis this morning and we thought we would get a good Tree Pipit count as we had three at first light, but a good count didn't materialise. Our vis totals were six Tree Pipits, 36 Meadow Pipits, a Chaffinch, three Swallows, eleven Goldfinches, 18 Linnets and three Alba Wags.

Apart from a Chiffchaff the only evidence of grounded migrants came from the mist nets. A bit of excitement came in the form of an acredula type Willow Warbler particularly when I walked up to the net and I could see this very obvious 'cold coloured' phyllosc in the net! We ringed eleven birds as follows:

Sedge Warbler - 1
Goldfinch - 3
Reed Bunting - 1
Great Tit - 1
Meadow Pipit - 1
Blue Tit - 1
Blackcap - 1
Willow Warbler - 1

 Acredula type Willow Warbler

Sedge Warbler

That was a good start to the day and then I got a call from Ian after lunch saying that he was at the water meadows and that he had one or possibly two Richard's Pipits! Ian had flushed the Dick's Pipits as he had walked across the water meadows and they had lifted with some Skylarks and he could hear the distinctive 'shreep' call and wasn't sure whether there was one or two. By the time I got there he had them distantly down on the deck and there were definitely two!

When I first arrived we couldn't locate them and it took a bit of walking to find them. They were flighty and we couldn't get anywhere near them. So I had plenty of flight views of the pair of them, listened to the distinctive call and observed the little hovering movement they do before landing. Eventually I got some reasonable views of them on the ground with the scope, but they were too distant for me to get any record shots. I have included below one of Ian's record shots and although not a brilliant image you can tell what it is if you squint and look hard enough!

 Richard's Pipit (honest!)

I'm going to struggle to get out in the week this week as I have a number of site visits to do, but I will try my best to get out one morning at least.

No comments: