Review of the Week: 10th-16th June 2004

Common Rosefinch: Hunmanby, N. Yorks. (Photo: Graham Catley)

Foula (Shetland) was clearly the place to be this week, with the majority of the British rarity interest originating from reports on the island. Pride of place goes to a Paddyfield Warbler on Sunday 13th. This is the 21st for Shetland (the majority of which have been on Fair Isle) and the fourth to have been seen in the islands in spring. Also present on Foula were a Rustic Bunting on the same day, a female Subalpine Warbler on Saturday 12th, and an adult Franklin's Gull on Thursday 10th which was the 5th for Shetland.

Arctic Redpoll: Barra, Outer Hebrides. (Photo: John Poyner)

Common Rosefinch: Hunmanby, N. Yorks. (Photo: Graham Catley) Icterine Warbler: Outney Common, Suffolk. (Photo: PW Frew)

Two Greenish Warblers arrived on Thursday 10th, with one briefly at Portland (Dorset) and another on Mousa (Shetland). A hornemanni Arctic Redpoll was reported at Loch Thuaimistear, Lewis (Outer Hebrides) on Saturday 12th. Scarce migrants were, not surprisingly, a bit thin on the ground. A Short-toed Lark was on Foula on Thursday 10th, a Bee-eater was over Felixstowe (Suffolk) on Saturday 12th and a Wryneck at Runham (Norfolk) on Monday 14th. Nine Red-backed Shrikes were noted on the Northern Isles, with 3 on North Ronaldsay (Orkney) and 4 on Foula. There were 6 Marsh Warblers on the same islands and the only Icterine Warbler (of 5 birds) away from this area was the long-staying male at Outney Common (Suffolk) which was present through the week. A handful of Common Rosefinches included one in East Yorkshire, and a Grey-headed Wagtail was at Loch of Strathbeg (Aberdeenshire) on Sunday 13th. A Hoopoe was present in Carmarthen and another was still at Torpoint (Cornwall) on Sunday 13th - it has been present since April. Also in Cornwall the Woodchat Shrike was last seen at Sennen on Friday 11th and the Dusky Warbler is still present at Fowey, whilst on Fair Isle the Rose-coloured Starling remains. There was good news from East Anglia where the RSPB revealed that Golden Orioles had bred at Hockwold Washes RSPB and that a nest was clearly viewable on the reserve; more elusive were the half-dozen or so migrants reported, most of which were on the Northern Isles.

Spotted Sandpiper: Sandbach Flashes, Cheshire. (Photo: Andy Warr) Spotted Sandpiper: Sandbach Flashes, Cheshire. (Photo: Andy Warr)

Spotted Sandpiper: Sandbach Flashes, Cheshire. (Photo: Andy Warr) Spotted Sandpiper: Sandbach Flashes, Cheshire. (Photo: Paul Hill)

American Golden Plover: Samson, Scilly. (Photo: Ben Lascelles)

A summer-plumaged Spotted Sandpiper was present at Sandbach Flashes (Cheshire) on Saturday 12th. Such birds at this time of year tend not to linger and this bird was not prepared to buck the trend either, being present for just the day. Back-up was provided by three Pectoral Sandpipers, with singles at Annagh Marsh (Co. Mayo) on 11th and North Ronaldsay from Monday 14th-15th, plus last week's bird at Wood Lane (Shropshire) remained to the 11th. A female Red-necked Phalarope was at Vane Farm (Perth/Kinross) on Tuesday 15th and there were 6 Temminck's Stints. On Samson the 1st-summer American Golden Plover was still present, as was the long-staying Greater Yellowlegs at Quoile Pondage (Co. Down), whilst the Broad-billed Sandpiper disappointed weekend birders by remaining at Drayton Bassett Pits (Staffs) only to Friday 11th.

Broad-billed Sandpiper: Drayton Bassett Pits, Staffs. (Photo: Mark Stirland) Broad-billed Sandpiper: Drayton Bassett Pits, Staffs. (Photo: Darren Chapman)

Bonaparte's Gull: Bowling Green Marsh, Devon. (Photo: Derek Julian) Teal x Green-winged Teal hybrid: Druridge Pools, Northumberland. (Photo: Alan Gilbertson)

A Wilson's Storm-petrel was reported from The Manacles (Cornwall) on Friday 11th and a Cory's Shearwater was noted past Galley Head (Co. Cork) on Thursday 10th. Several Great White Egrets included a colour-ringed bird at the National Wetland Centre (Carmarthen) which had been present earlier in the spring at Leighton Moss RSPB (Lancs) from 27th-31st May. The Purple Heron was still present at Minsmere RSPB (Suffolk) on Thursday 10th and the Glossy Ibis remains in residence at Otmoor RSPB (Oxon). A female Red-footed Falcon was at Bittering GP (Norfolk) on Thursday 10th and there were several fly-through Black Kites, though none lingered. The 1st-year Bonaparte's Gull was present through the week at Bowling Green Marsh (Devon), the American Herring Gull is still at Nimmo's Pier (Co. Galway) and there were four 1st-summer Ring-billed Gulls on the Outer Hebrides. Rare and scarce ducks were, not surprisingly, in short supply, but included the drake King Eider in Ayshire, 3 Ring-necked Ducks, 3 Green-winged Teals, plus a hybrid in Northumberland and an American Wigeon, with the Cinnamon Teal still present on Lewis and the drake Bufflehead relocated in W. Midlands. Around 40 Quail were reported, including 15 scattered along the length of the Lower Derwent Valley in N. Yorks.

Corncrake: Tory Island, Co. Donegal. Only in breeding areas can birders sometimes be treated to views such as this. (Photo: Paul and Andrea Kelly)

Corncrake: Tory Island, Co. Donegal. (Photo: Paul and Andrea Kelly) Corncrake: Tory Island, Co. Donegal. (Photo: Paul and Andrea Kelly)
Many of the images that appear in our weekly reviews can be purchased from the photographers, some of whom have their own websites:

Bill Aspin: http://www.eastlancashirebirding.net
Ian Barnard: http://homepage.ntlworld.com/sussex.birder
Bill Baston: http://billbaston.com
Steve Blain: http://www.steveblain.co.uk
Nigel Blake: http://www.nigelblake.co.uk
Will Bowell: http://www.geocities.com/wbowell/
Paul Bowerman: http://mysite.freeserve.com/severnsidebirds
Paul Bowyer: http://www.ukbirds.net
Andy Brett: http://www.freewebs.com/andybrett/
Martin Cade: http://www.portlandbirdobs.btinternet.co.uk
Mark Caunt: Kit Day: http://angusbirding.homestead.com/
Kit Day: http://www.geocities.com/christophe_41/
John Judge: http://www.draycotebirding.co.uk
Paul and Andrea Kelly: http://www.irishbirdimages.com/
Jack Levene: http://www.birdingimages.com
John Malloy: http://mysite.freeserve.com/JohnMalloyBirdPhotos
Jerry O'Brien: http://www.BirdsofBerkshire.co.uk
James Packer: http://www.somersetbirder.co.uk
Tristan Reid: http://www.solwaybirder.org.uk
Steve Round: http://stevenround-birdphotography.com
Pete Ryder: http://groups.msn.com/petesdigibirds homepage
Tom Shevlin: http://wildlifesnaps.com/
Matt Slaymaker: http://www.freewebs.com/slaymaker
Phillip Tomkinson: http://www.philliptomkinson.pwp.blueyonder.co.uk
Stephen Tomlinson: http://www.digitalbirds.co.uk
Sue Tranter: http://www.suesbirdphotos.co.uk/
Steve Williams: http://www.hilbrebirdobs.co.uk
Chris Wormwell: http://www.iombirding.co.uk
Dylan Wrathall: http://www.planetthanet.org
Written by: Russell Slack