26/05/2005
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Review of the Week: 19th-25th May 2005

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Trumpeter Finch: Landguard NR, Suffolk. (Photo: Steve Evans) Trumpeter Finch: Landguard NR, Suffolk. (Photo: Major Wildlife)
Trumpeter Finch: Landguard NR, Suffolk. (Photo: Chris Mayne) Trumpeter Finch: Landguard NR, Suffolk. (Photo: John Dickenson)
Trumpeter Finch: Landguard NR, Suffolk. (Photo: Carl Baggott) Trumpeter Finch: Landguard NR, Suffolk. (Photo: Bill Baston)
Trumpeter Finch: Landguard NR, Suffolk. (Photo: Kit Day) Trumpeter Finch: Landguard NR, Suffolk. (Photo: Paul Bagguley)

2005 is proving to be an excellent year for 5-star rarities with species from the dim and distant past making a welcome (re)appearance for modern-day listers!

Followers of European news will not have been surprised by the arrival of the 8th Trumpeter Finch for Britain at Landguard NR (Suffolk) on Saturday 21st. With reports of three in France this spring, one in Switzerland and large numbers in Morocco, it was clear that birds were 'on the move' and a British sighting was to be expected. The Landguard bird obliged large numbers of observers throughout the week and was greatly admired by a new generation of 'listers' as the last British record to be 'collectable' was one at Church Norton (W. Sussex) from 19th-23rd May 1984; indeed there have only been three one-day occurrences since then: Essex in September 1985, Northumberland in August 1987 and Highland in June 1992. On Tuesday 24th the 9th Trumpeter Finch for Britain made landfall at Tankerton (Kent) and, like the Suffolk individual, is still present at the time of writing. It is to be fully expected that more shall follow before the summer is out, with fresh discoveries most likely at any of the usual migrant hotspots along the southern coasts of England and Ireland or even on the Northern Isles.

Trumpeter Finch: Tankerton, Kent. (Photo: Mike Buckland) Trumpeter Finch: Landguard NR, Suffolk. (Photo: Mike Buckland)
Trumpeter Finch: Tankerton, Kent. (Photo: Andy Lawson) Trumpeter Finch: Landguard NR, Suffolk. (Photo: Andy Vidler)

Late news from last week was of a Moustached Warbler at Dodman Point (Cornwall) from 15th to perhaps 18th. With just four accepted British records, the last of which was as long ago as 1965, any record would effectively be a British 'first' for modern birders, but news of this bird did not reach the grapevine before its departure. A Crag Martin was reported from Frensham Great Pond (Surrey) on Thursday 19th, but unfortunately it moved on after 30 minutes. Also in Cornwall a Roller was reported from Tehidy CP during the week, but again had moved on before news reached the birding community. From last week, the Dark-eyed Junco on the Maersk Curlew in the North Sea off Aberdeenshire was last reported on 19th. The Barrow's Goldeneye remained in Aberdeenshire, relocating to Loch of Strathbeg from 22nd onwards. The Great Reed Warbler remains at Willington GPs (Beds) and the Snowy Owl was still on North Uist (Outer Hebrides).

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Snowy Owl: N. Uist, Outer Hebrides. (Photo: Steve Round) Snowy Owl: N. Uist, Outer Hebrides. (Photo: Sean Nixon)
Whiskered Tern: Ashton's Flash, Cheshire. (Photo: Steve Evans) Whiskered Tern: Ashton's Flash, Cheshire. (Photo: Steve Evans)

Whiskered Tern: Fleet Pond, Hants. (Photo: Jonathan Mist)

Whiskered Tern: KGVI Res, Surrey. (Photo: Andrew Moon) Whiskered Tern: KGVI Res, Surrey. (Photo: Andrew Moon)

Squacco Heron: Kilconquhar Loch, Fife. (Photo: Mark Wilkinson)

A party of 4 Whiskered Terns at Ashton's Flash (Cheshire) from 19th-20th brought back memories of a party of the same size in South Yorkshire last year, but luckily these birds remained for longer. Amazingly, the same party were relocated passing over Keele (Staffs) on 20th. Also on 20th one at Titchfield Haven (Hants) may then have been the bird at Tundry Pond and Fleet Pond (Hants) and Moor Green Lakes (Berks) up to 22nd, then King George VI Res and Staines Res (Surrey) from 22nd onwards with another at Cotswold WP (Glos) from 24th onwards. One was also reported at Acle (Norfolk) on 23rd. A Gull-billed Tern was at Widewater on 21st and Selsey Bill (W. Sussex) on 22nd and Titchfield Haven (Hants) on 23rd - presumably the recent Kent individual. A Squacco Heron at Kilconquhar Loch (Fife) on Sunday 22nd was the first Scottish record since 1913. A Collared Pratincole at Freckleton (Lancs) on Monday 23rd didn't linger, but an obliging Terek Sandpiper took up residence at Cliffe Pools (Kent) from Tuesday 24th. An American Golden Plover was at Cemlyn (Anglesey) from 22nd onwards and a Broad-billed Sandpiper chose the unlikely surrounds of Watergrove Res (Gtr Manchester) to spend the afternoon on Saturday 21st.

Terek Sandpiper: Cliffe, Kent. (Photo: Steve Evans) Terek Sandpiper: Cliffe, Kent. (Photo: Andy Lawson)
Broad-billed Sandpiper: Watergrove Res, Gtr Manchester. (Photo: Bill Aspin) Broad-billed Sandpiper: Watergrove Res, Gtr Manchester. (Photo: Bill Aspin)
American Golden Plover: Cemlyn, Anglesey. (Photo: Chris Jones) American Golden Plover: Cemlyn, Anglesey. (Photo: Marc Hughes)

Three Subalpine Warblers arrived on 20th, at Marazion (Cornwall), Collieston (Aberdeenshire) and St Agnes (Scilly), the last remaining to 23rd. A Rustic Bunting was on Fair Isle (Shetland) on 19th and 25th and another was on Unst (Shetland) on 22nd. A Woodchat Shrikewas at Cromer (Norfolk) from 21st-25th, a Tawny Pipit on Fair Isle on 23rd, with a Short-toed Lark there on 24th and a Rose-coloured Starling near Padstow (Conrwall) throughout the week. In the lack of suitable conditions the only drift of scarce migrants was confined to the Northern Isles. A Common Rosefinch was on Unst on 24th, and a Marsh Warbler at Gulberwick (Shetland) on 24th. Around 9 Red-backed Shrikes included birds in Oxfordshire, 8 Bluethroats were noted from Fife northwards, and 15+ Golden Orioles were well spread. Five Icterine Warblers were noted, including one on the Outer Hebrides and the rest on Shetland and 6 Grey-headed Wagtails included 3 on Tiree (Argyll). Of six Bee-eaters, none paused for long; there were 4 Hoopoes, a Wryneck was at Wood Mills NR (W. Sussex) on 22nd and a Melodious Warbler at Calf of Man on 24th. A Shore Lark was on North Rona (Outer Hebrides) on 23rd. Red-rumped Swallows passed through Spurn (E. Yorks) on 20th and 22nd and last week's bird on St. Mary's (Scilly) remained to 19th. An Alpine Swift was over Easington (E. Yorks) on 20th with one over Carlingford Loch (Co. Down) the same day. A 'possible' Iberian Chiffchaff was reported from Cranborne (Dorset) on 22nd.

Rustic Bunting: Unst, Shetland. (Photo: Mike Pennington) Great Reed Warbler: Willington GPs, Beds. (Photo: R D Millard)
Woodchat Shrike: Cromer, Norfolk. (Photo: Steve Evans) Woodchat Shrike: Cromer, Norfolk. (Photo: Steve Evans)

A White-billed Diver was off Tiumpan Head (Outer Hebrides) on 22nd. A male Red-footed Falcon was at Friasthorpe (E. Yorks) on 22nd, and Black Kites included a lingering bird at Moore NR (Cheshire) from 20th-21st, one over Sheringham (Norfolk) on 21st, Widnes (Cheshire) on 24th and Loch More (Highland) on 24th. Adult and 2nd-summer Bonaparte's Gulls were on the Outer Hebrides, a Sabine's Gull was off Bowness-on-Solway (Cumbria) on 24th and 25th, a possible American Herring Gull was reported from the London Wetland Centre (London) on 20th and 21st, with the long-staying American Herring Gull still at Dingle (Co. Kerry). Ring-billed Gulls were in Co. Cork and on the Outer Hebrides.

Bonaparte's Gull: S. Uist, Outer Hebrides. (Photo: Sean Nixon)
Black Kite: Moore NR, Cheshire. (Photo: Steve Tomlinson)

Temminck's Stint: Earsdon, Northumberland. (Photo: Alan Gilbertson) Temminck's Stint: Saltholme Pools, Northumberland. (Photo: David Brown)
Great White Egret: Kiloughter, Co. Wicklow. (Photo: Paul and Andrea Kelly) White Stork: Middle Littleton, Worcs. (Photo: Vince Garvey)

A Purple Heron was at Cley (Norfolk) from 21st-25th, Cattle Egrets were in Kent and Sussex, with Great White Egrets in Cleveland and Co. Wicklow. A Pectoral Sandpiper was on Lewis (Outer Hebrides) on 21st, with the bird in Lincolnshire from last week present to 20th, a male Kentish Plover was at Stanpit Marsh (Dorset) on 25th. There were around 17 Temminck's Stints during the week and 13 Dotterel. A Lesser Scaup was at Kingsbury P (Warks) and American Wigeon on South Uist (Outer Hebrides). There were 2 Green-winged Teal on Shetland, a Ring-necked Duck was in Somerset and Surf Scoter in Lothian.

Dotterel: Cow Green, Durham. (Photo: Malcolm Hobbs) Dotterel: Cow Green, Durham. (Photo: David Brown)
Dotterel: N. Uist, Outer Hebrides. (Photo: Steve Round) Dotterel: N. Uist, Outer Hebrides. (Photo: Sean Nixon)
Red-necked Grebe: Knowsley Park, Lancs. (Photo: Sue Tranter) Red-necked Grebe: Knowsley Park, Lancs. (Photo: Sue Tranter)
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://mysite.wanadoo-members.co.uk/birdphotos/index.htm
Will Bowell: http://www.wanderingbirders.com
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
Graham Catley: http://pewit.blogspot.com/
Mark Caunt: http://angusbirding.homestead.com/
Kit Day: http://www.kitday-uk.com/
Lee Dingain: http://www.leedingain.co.uk
Jon Dunn: http://www.surfbirds.com/blogs/Stercorarius/
Steve Evans: http://www.powow.com/birds2004/
Katie Fuller: http://bogbumper.blogspot.com
Sean Gray: http://www.grayimages.co.uk
Peter Hadfield: http://www.manxbirdphotography.co.uk
Josh Jones: http://www.wanderingbirders.com
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
Brian Mcgeough: http://www.pbase.com/bmcgeough/british_birds
Jerry O'Brien: http://www.BirdsofBerkshire.co.uk
Charlie Moores: http://www.charliesbirdblog.com
James Packer: http://www.somersetbirder.co.uk
Mike Pennington: http://www.nature.shetland.co.uk
Marc Read: http://www.marcread-pix.com
Tristan Reid: http://www.solwaybirder.org.uk
Steve Round: http://stevenround-birdphotography.com
Deryk Shaw/FIBO: http://www.fairislebirdobs.co.uk
Tom Shevlin: http://wildlifesnaps.com/
Matt Slaymaker: http://www.freewebs.com/slaymaker
Oliver Smart: http://www.smartimages.co.uk
George Spraggs: http://www.bird-watching.co.uk
Glen Tepke: http://www.pbase.com/gtepke
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