Review of the Week: 1st-7th September 2005

The week at a glance:
Booted Warbler: Winterton, Norfolk (photo: Kit Day).

Booted Warbler: Winterton, Norfolk (photo: Chris Orders). Booted Warbler: Winterton, Norfolk (photo: Steve Evans).

Lesser Grey Shrike: Spurn, E. Yorks (photo: RJP).

Lesser Grey Shrike: Spurn, E. Yorks (photo: Roy Harvey). Lesser Grey Shrike: Spurn, E. Yorks (photo: Roy Harvey).

There were plenty of birds on offer, especially so given the number of rare and scarce waders present, and it was easily the best week of the autumn for scarce passerines aided by a short-lived easterly airflow.

A Lanceolated Warbler was trapped on Foula (Shetland) on Monday 5th and was present to 6th, and a possible was reported from Sandwich Bay (Kent) on Wednesday 7th. A Radde's Warbler was reportedly trapped at Wakering Stairs (Essex) on Saturday 3rd; if accepted this will be the earliest British record by some margin. Four Booted Warblers included a popular bird at Winterton (Norfolk) on Thursday 1st, and three less accessible birds on Shetland: Noss on 2nd, East Voe of Quarff from 2nd-3rd and Fair Isle from 4th-6th. Three Thrush Nightingales on Shetland included birds on Foula from 4th-6th, Fair Isle 5th-6th and Norwick, Unst on 6th. Western Bonelli's Warblers were seen on St. Mary's and St. Agnes (Scilly) with one on Cape Clear (Co. Cork) from 4th onwards and another at Beachy Head (E. Sussex) from 2nd-4th. A Lesser Grey Shrike was at Spurn (E. Yorks) on Friday 2nd and a possible Little Swift was over St. Martin's (Scilly) on Monday 5th.

Arctic Warbler: Unst, Shetland (photo: Mike Pennington). Arctic Warbler: Unst, Shetland (photo: Mike Pennington).

Greenish Warbler: Flamborough Head, E. Yorks (photo: Steve Morgan).

Greenish Warbler: Whitburn, Durham (photo: Mark Newsome). Greenish Warbler: Whitburn, Durham (photo: Mark Newsome).
Barred Warbler: Cley, Norfolk (photo: Mick Green). Barred Warbler: Out Skerries, Shetland (photo: Dougie Preston).
Marsh Warbler: Landguard, Suffolk (photo: David Coxon). Marsh Warbler: Landguard, Suffolk (photo: David Coxon).

Firecrest: Landguard, Suffolk (photo: David Coxon).

Five Arctic Warblers included birds on Bressay (Shetland) from 2nd-6th, Skaw, Unst (Shetland) on 2nd, Foula (Shetland) on 3rd, South Ronaldsay (Orkney) on 4th and an early bird on St. Mary's (Scilly) from 6th-7th. An influx of Greenish Warblers included birds at Thornham Point (Norfolk), Noss (Shetland), Filey (N. Yorks), 2 at Whitburn (Durham), Quendale (Shetland), Flamborough Head (E. Yorks) and Dursey Island (Co. Cork). An Aquatic Warbler was at Nanjizal (Cornwall) on 6th and a Marsh Warbler trapped at Landguard (Suffolk) on 4th. Around 40 Barred Warblers were reported, including 6 on Fair Isle, 5 on Out Skerries (Shetland) and 5 on Foula. There were just over a dozen Icterine Warblers and half-a-dozen Melodious Warblers, the only Bluethroat was on Tresco (Scilly) on 5th and Red-breasted Flycatchers were on Bressay (Shetland) on 2nd and at The Naze (Essex) on 3rd.

Red-backed Shrike: Spurn, E. Yorks (photo: John Harris).

Red-backed Shrike: Filey, N. Yorks (photo: Richard Jackson). Red-backed Shrike: Filey, N. Yorks (photo: Terry Hobson).
Ortolan Bunting: Filey, N. Yorks (photo: Dave Mansell). Ortolan Bunting: Filey, N. Yorks (photo: Lynne Demaine).

Wryneck: Horwich, Manchester (photo: Sean Gray).

Wryneck: Grafham Water, Cambs (photo: Stuart Elsom). Wryneck: Mount Batten, Devon (photo: Phil Stidwill).

A Woodchat Shrike was on St. Mary's (Scilly) to 1st and another was at Warham Green (Norfolk) on 6th. Around 20 Red-backed Shrikes were noted, most on the Northern Isles and along the east coast. A tally of 60 Wrynecks were reported, including crowd-pulling inland birds at Grafham Water (Cambs) and Horwich (Gtr Manchester). Ortolan Buntings crept into double figures, including one on Walney Island (Cumbria). A Tawny Pipit was on St. Mary's (Scilly) from 5th-6th, with 'possibles' in Kent and E. Yorks. An arrival of Rose-coloured Starlings totalled 10 birds, all but one of which were juveniles; the Bee-eater was again on Shetland, at Pool of Virkie on 1st and Helendale on 5th. A Hoopoe was reported at Croydon (London) on 1st and a Golden Oriole was on South Uist (Outer Hebrides) on 4th and one at Marnhull (Dorset) on 7th. Four Common Rosefinches were on Shetland, with other in East Yorkshire and Scilly. The Black-headed Wagtail was again at South Huish Marsh (Devon) on 2nd.

Baird's Sandpiper: Lewis, Outer Hebrides (photo: Tristan ap Rheinallt). Baird's Sandpiper: Lewis, Outer Hebrides (photo: Andy Robinson).
Semipalmated Sandpiper: Belfast Harbour, Co. Antrim (photo: Derek Charles). Semipalmated Sandpiper: Belfast Harbour, Co. Antrim (photo: Derek Charles).
American Golden Plover: Butt of Lewis, Outer Hebrides (photo: Tristan ap Rheinallt). American Golden Plover: Butt of Lewis, Outer Hebrides (photo: Andy Robinson).
American Golden Plover: Anthorn, Cumbria (photo: Tristan Reid). American Golden Plover: Anthorn, Cumbria (photo: Tristan Reid).

Wader buffs continued to have a smorgasbord of delights on offer. The Least Sandpiper continues its residence at Thurlestone (Devon) and a Pacific Golden Plover was at Trimley Marshes (Suffolk) on Tuesday 6th. The Semipalmated Sandpiper remained at Belfast Harbour RSPB (Co. Antrim) and others were at Blennerville (Co. Kerry) on 7th and Ballycotton (Co. Cork) on 7th. The Long-billed Dowitcher made a reappearance at Shannon Airport (Co. Clare) on 2nd and 7th. The American Golden Plover remained at Anthorn (Cumbria), and others were at Butt of Lewis (Outer Hebrides) on 3rd and on Mull (Argyll). A Lesser Yellowlegs was at Colliford Lake (Cornwall) on 1st, and another was reported from Northam Burrows (Devon) on 3rd with one at Broad Lough (Co. Wicklow) the same day; on the Outer Hebrides the Lesser Yellowlegs remained on South Uist. A Wilson's Phalarope at Amble (Northumberland) on 2nd was the 7th county record. A notable arrival of Baird's Sandpipers included birds on St. Agnes and St. Mary's (Scilly), Hayle Estuary (Cornwall), Saltholme Pools (Cleveland), Borve, Lewis (Outer Hebrides), Black Rock Strand (Co. Kerry) and Newport Wetlands (Gwent). A White-rumped Sandpiper was at Black Rock Strand (Co. Kerry) on 4th and another at Salthouse (Norfolk) on 6th. A superb tally of 35 Buff-breasted Sandpipers were scattered around the country, with 5 on South Uist (Outer Hebrides), 3 on Berneray (Outer Hebrides), 3 on Tiree (Argyll) and 3 at Tacumshin (Co. Wexford). Back up in the shape of around 30 Pectoral Sandpipers was well appreciated and 15 Dotterel were mostly confined to the southwest. Grey Phalarope numbers approached 20, 5 of which passed the Bridges of Ross (Co. Clare) on 1st and 7 likewise on 3rd. A Red-necked Phalarope was at Bardsey (Gwyned) on 5th. A Kentish Plover was reported from Cliffe Pools (Kent) on 5th with one at Coalhouse Fort (Essex) from 5th-7th. There were 4 Temminck's Stints with one at Kinsham (Worcs) from 5th-7th, Prior's Fen (Cambs) on 5th, Oare Marshes (Kent) on 7th and last week's bird remaining at Holland Haven (Essex) to 5th.

Pectoral Sandpiper: Draycote Water, Warks (photo: Steve Valentine). Pectoral Sandpiper: Earsdon, Northumberland (photo: MJ Watson).
Buff-breasted Sandpiper: Colliford Lake, Cornwall (photo: Rob Laughton). Buff-breasted Sandpiper: Colliford Lake, Cornwall (photo: A. Cunningham).
Kentish Plover: Coalhouse Fort, Essex (photo: Sean Nixon). Wilson's Phalarope: Amble, Northumberland (photo: Alan Gilbertson).
Buff-breasted Sandpiper: Tacumshin, Co. Wexford (photo: Paul and Andrea Kelly). Buff-breasted Sandpiper: Tacumshin, Co. Wexford (photo: Paul and Andrea Kelly).

Compared with previous weeks, sea passage accounted for little of this week's action. A Little Shearwater was reported past Fife Ness (Fife) on Wednesday 7th. White-winged Black Terns were at Swords (Co. Dublin) and Oare Marshes (Kent) on 3rd, with another at Tacumshin (Co. Wexford) from 3rd-4th and another at Weston-Super-Mare (Somerset) from 7th. A handful of Sabine's Gulls were noted from coastal locations and the Laughing Gull remained in Co. Galway. The Cattle Egret remained at Brampton (Cambs) and Great White Egrets were in Hampshire and Devon, where one was at Colyford Common on 1st and two at Pottington on 4th. At least 14 Spotted Crakes were reported, more than half in the southwest. Over 30 Honey Buzzards were reported moving through and Black Kite reports included one at Wells (Norfolk) on 3rd, East Leake (Notts) on 3rd and Borehamwood (Herts) on 7th. Drake King Eiders were in Shetland, a Surf Scoter in the Outer Hebrides, Ring-necked Ducks in Somerset and Scilly and Ferruginous Ducks in Somerset and Perth/Kinross. The drake Green-winged Teal remained in South Yorkshire.

White-winged Black Tern: Oare Marshes, Kent (photo: Mike Buckland). White-winged Black Tern: Rutland Water, Leics (photo: Steve Valentine).
White-winged Black Tern: Weston-Super-Mare, Somerset (photo: Rich Andrews). White-winged Black Tern: Weston-Super-Mare, Somerset (photo: James Packer).
Cattle Egret: Brampton, Cambs (photo: Stuart Elsom). Green-winged Teal: Edderthorpe Flash, S. Yorks (photo: Simon Wilson).
Red-necked Grebe: Dovercourt, Essex (photo: Kit Day). Red-necked Grebe: Dovercourt, Essex (photo: Sean Nixon).
Curlew Sandpiper: Toft Newton Res, Lincs (photo: Dean Eades). Little Stint: Toft Newton Res, Lincs (photo: Russell Hayes).
Bittern: Titchwell, Norfolk (photo: Mick Green). Hobby: Milton Keynes, Bucks (photo: Richard Bedford).
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
Richard Bedford: http://www.richardbedford.co.uk
Steve Blain: http://www.steveblain.co.uk
Nigel Blake: http://mysite.wanadoo-members.co.uk/birdphotos/index.htm
Paul Boulden: http://southdevonbirds.mysite.wanadoo-members.co.uk/
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/
Eric Dempsey: http://www.birdsireland.com/
Lee Dingain: http://www.leedingain.co.uk
Jon Dunn: http://www.surfbirds.com/blogs/Stercorarius/
Andrew Easton: http://home.clara.net/ammodytes/
Graham Eaton: http://www.eatonphotography.co.uk
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
Tony Mills: http://www.notjustbirds.com
Jerry O'Brien: http://www.BirdsofBerkshire.co.uk
Charlie Moores: http://www.charliesbirdblog.com
Mark Newsome: http://www.whitburnbirding.co.uk
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
Simon Wilson: http://www.bakewellbirder.co.uk/
Chris Wormwell: http://www.iombirding.co.uk
Dylan Wrathall: http://www.planetthanet.org
Written by: Russell Slack