Review of the Week: 14th–20th June 2007


The week at a glance:

Hudsonian Whimbrel: Walney Island, Cumbria (photo: Craig Shaw).

The first truly obliging Hudsonian Whimbrel for four years proved to be a very popular find on Walney Island (Cumbria) this week. Initially found on the morning of 14th, it remained tidal and quite elusive until the 17th when it settled down in one area and was still present at the time of writing on 21st. Nearby the White-tailed Lapwing remained at Leighton Moss RSPB (Lancs) to at least 17th but it has gone missing for long periods before and may well still be in the area. Other less accessible highlights were a male Harlequin Duck on St Kilda briefly on the 18th, the long-staying Killdeer still around the Virkie area on Shetland Mainland and the Little Crake still at Burrafirth, Unst (Shetland).

Citrine Wagtail: Birsay, Orkeny (photo: Keith Hague).

Citrine Wagtail: Birsay, Orkeny (photo: Keith Hague).

Red-backed Shrike: Blakeney, Norfolk (photo: Tom Wade).

Scarce migrants became just that this week with far fewer reports than last week. A new Great Reed Warbler was found at Pool of Virkie (Shetland) on 14th while one remained at Lydd (Kent) throughout. There were two each of Icterine and Melodious Warblers and just three Marsh Warblers were reported. The first-summer Lesser Grey Shrike was still on Fair Isle (Shetland) to at least 17th and a total of 7 Red-backed Shrikes were seen, including a couple of inland birds in Hampshire and Lancashire. A male Citrine Wagtail was at Loch of Boardhouse (Orkney) on 15th-16th. Elsewhere in Scotland the long-staying Bee-eater was still around Tarbet (Highland) to at least 16th and in the Outer Hebrides there was a Rose-coloured Starling at Ardivachar Point, S. Uist on 20th and a Common Rosefinch at Griais, Lewis from 14th-16th. Just one migrant Golden Oriole was reported from East Yorks on 17th, a Red-breasted Flycatcher was at Portland on 19th and an Alpine Swift was seen with Common Swifts over Heckwood Tor (Devon) also on 19th.

Whiskered Tern: Siddick Ponds, Cumbria (photo: Craig Shaw).

Long-tailed Skua: Melvaig, Highland (photo: Nick Davies).

Single migrant Red-necked Phalaropes appeared in Cleveland, Worcestershire and East Sussex and a Pectoral Sandpiper was at Scatness (Shetland) on 16-17th. An adult Long-tailed Skua was seen feeding offshore from Melvaig (Highland) on 18th. The appearance of an adult Whiskered Tern in West Yorkshire on 17th was the beginning of a series of records which may have been indicative of a small arrival or possibly just one wandering individual. Sighting were reported from Pugney's CP and Wintersett Reservoir on 17th, Broomhill Flash (S. Yorks) on 17th, Eyebrook Reservoir (Leics) on 18th and Siddick Ponds NR (Cumbria) on 20th. Less obliging was the Gull-billed Tern that flew west at Dungeness on 16th. A first-summer Bonaparte's Gull was seen Ardivachar Point, S. Uist (Outer Hebrides) on 19th with presumably the same bird at Howmore, S. Uist on 20th. An American Herring Gull was reported from 'Stinky Bay', Benbecula (Outer Hebrides) on 19th and there was a Ring-billed Gull at Blennerville (Co. Kerry) on 14th.

Great White Egret: Tophill, E. Yorks (photo: Tom Wade).

The Great White Egret remained at Tophill Low (E. Yorks) to 16th and what may well have been the same bird was seen at Greatham Creek and Cowpen Marsh (Cleveland) on 17th. A Squacco Heron was at Ham Marshes (Kent) on 17-18th and a male Little Bittern was at Titchwell RSPB from 16th. Three Glossy Ibis were reported flying high west over Marlow (Bucks) on 17th while one was still at Newton Marsh (Lancs) throughout and showing exceptionally well on occasions. Spoonbills were reported from more than 20 sites with maxima of 10 over Minsmere RSPB (Suffolk) on 15th and six past Spurn (E. Yorks) on 20th.

Little Bittern: Titchwell, Norfolk (photo: Peter Simpson).

Little Bittern: Titchwell, Norfolk (photo: Mick Green).

A 2nd-year White-billed Diver was close inshore just off the beach at Melvaig (Highland) on 17th. A drake Black Duck was at Liddesdale on Loch Sunart (Highland) on 16-17th. The Ring-necked Duck remained at Avonmouth (Somerset) throughout and the Ferruginous Duck at Chew Valley (Somerset) was seen to at least 17th. A pair of Surf Scoter were off Blackdog (Aberdeenshire) on 15th and a drake still in Lunan Bay (Angus and Dundee) to at least 19th. About a dozen Common Cranes were still wandering around the south and east of the country including three over the Great Ryburgh Watchpoint (Norfolk) on 17/6.

Photo of the week

With this photo of aerial interaction between terns, Richard has once again frozen a perfect moment in time. The eye contact, the almost-touching bills and the mirrored positions of the bodies and wings make for a dramatic image, made all the more graphic by the near-monochrome palette.

Common Tern: Summer Leys, Northants (photo: Richard Bedford).

Other notable photos from the week

Peregrine Falcon: W. Yorkshire (photo: Sean Gray).

Razorbill: Isle of May, Fife (photo: Euan Ferguson).

Marsh Harrier: Cley, Norfolk (photo: Jim Almond).

Black-headed Gull: Summer Leys, Northants (photo: Richard Bedford).

Goosander: Martin Mere, Lancs (photo: Sean Gray).

Osprey: Highland (photo: Steve Round).

Many of the images that appear in our weekly reviews can be purchased from the photographers, some of whom have their own websites:

John Anderson: http://www.pbase.com/crail_birder
Bill Aspin: http://billaspinsnatureblog.blogspot.com
Mike Atkinson: http://mikeatkinson.net
Richard Bedford: http://www.richardbedford.co.uk
Steve Blain: http://www.steveblain.co.uk
Will Bowell: http://www.wanderingbirders.com
Paul Bowerman: http://www.severnsidebirds.co.uk
Paul Bowyer: http://www.birdlist.co.uk
Graham Catley: http://pewit.blogspot.com/
Mark Caunt: http://www.AngusBirding.com
Dean Eades: http://www.pbase.com/dean_eades
Andrew Easton: http://home.clara.net/ammodytes/
Graham Eaton: http://www.eatonphotography.co.uk
Stuart Elsom: http://www.stuartelsom.co.uk
Steve Evans: http://www.powow.com/birds2004/
Katie Fuller: http://bogbumper.blogspot.com
Ian Fulton: http://www.pbase.com/ianfulton
Sean Gray: http://www.grayimages.co.uk
David Hatton: http://www.kowapower.com
Josh Jones: http://www.wanderingbirders.com
Paul and Andrea Kelly: http://www.irishbirdimages.com/
Matt Latham: http://www.mattlathamphotography.com
Micky Maher: http://www.aardfoto.co.uk/
John Malloy: http://mysite.wanadoo-members.co.uk/johnmalloy
Brian Mcgeough: http://www.brianmcgeough.com/
Tony Mills: http://www.notjustbirds.com
Jerry O'Brien: http://www.BirdsofBerkshire.co.uk
Mark Newsome: http://www.durhambirdclub.org/
James Packer: http://www.somersetbirder.co.uk
Mike Pennington: http://www.nature.shetland.co.uk
Ken Plows: http://www.kenswildlifepics.co.uk
Ray Purser: http://www.pbase.com/02purser
Marc Read: http://www.marcread-pix.com
Tristan Reid: http://www.atricillaimages.co.uk/
Steve Round: http://stevenround-birdphotography.com
Craig Shaw: http://craigsukbirdpictures.bravehost.com/
Tom Shevlin: http://wildlifesnaps.com/
Peter Simpson: http://www.blueskybirds.co.uk
Matt Slaymaker: http://www.mattslaymaker.co.uk
Oliver Smart: http://www.smartimages.co.uk
George Spraggs: http://www.bird-watching.co.uk
Richard Steel: http://wildlifephotographic.bblogspot.com/
Stephen Tomlinson: http://stevesbirding.blogspot.com
Sue Tranter: http://www.suesbirdphotos.co.uk/
Damian Waters: http://www.drumimages.co.uk
Steve Williams: http://www.hilbrebirdobs.co.uk
Simon Wilson: http://www.bakewellbirder.co.uk/
Chris Wormwell: http://www.iombirding.co.uk
Dylan Wrathall: http://www.planetthanet.org
Written by: Tim Barker