Review of the Week: 6th-12th January 2005

Wilson's Phalarope: Seaton Carew, Cleveland. (Photo: Martyn Sidwell) Wilson's Phalarope: Seaton Carew, Cleveland. (Photo: Mike Watson)

A surprise find this week was a Wilson's Phalarope at Seaton Carew (Cleveland) on Sunday 9th. This represents the first ever British and Irish winter record of this Nearctic wader. Most are seen in the autumn months; a bird at Glan Conwy (Conwy) in 1989 was present to 8th December, but had first arrived in September and there are a few early November records.

Ross's Gull: Brow Marsh, Shetland. (Photo: Roger Riddington) Ivory Gull: Kyle of Tongue, Highland. (Photo: Richard Dunn)

Laughing Gull: Carnoustie, Angus/Dundee. (Photo: Hugh Addlesse) Laughing Gull: Carnoustie, Angus/Dundee. (Photo: Hugh Addlesse)

Glaucous Gull: Foreness Point, Kent. (Photo: Dylan Wrathall) Iceland Gull: Oban, Argyll. (Photo: Bill Jackson)

'Larophiles' were well catered for during the week. An adult Ross's Gull was at Nimmo's Pier (Co. Galway) for much of the afternoon on Thursday 6th and an adult was at Loch of Brow (Shetland) from Saturday 8th-11th. An adult Bonaparte's Gull was at Stornoway (Outer Hebrides) on Monday 10th, an adult at Castletown (Highland) on Wednesday 12th and a report of another at Downham Market (Norfolk) on Friday 7th. In Highland the 1st-winter Ivory Gull was still at Kyle of Tongue on Thursday 6th and the 1st-winter Laughing Gull remained at Carnoustie (Angus and Dundee) to Saturday 8th. There were two American Herring Gulls at Nimmo's Pier on Thursday 6th, with the 2nd-winter present there through the week and a 1st-winter at Dingle (Co. Kerry). An excellent influx of Iceland Gulls took place. Over 130+ were reported, the majority of which were on the Outer Hebrides and in Ireland, with for example 18 at Stornoway harbour (Outer Hebrides) and 11 at Nimmo's Pier. Mixed in with these were several Kumlien's Gulls. In addition, over 60 Glaucous Gulls were noted, 7 of which were at Nimmo's Pier and 6 at Culmore Dump (Londonderry). Finally, nearly a dozen Ring-billed Gulls were reported and over half-a-dozen Caspian Gulls.

Iceland Gull: Lerwick, Shetland. (Photo: Micky Maher) Iceland Gull: Lerwick, Shetland. (Photo: Micky Maher)
White-tailed Eagle: Great Bircham, Norfolk. (Photo: Steve) White-tailed Eagle: Great Bircham, Norfolk. (Photo: Steve)

A White-tailed Eagle was at Great Bircham (Norfolk) from Saturday 8th onwards and proved deservedly popular – presumably this was the same bird that passed over Massingham Heath (Norfolk) on 26th December. A White-billed Diver was at Bluemull Sound (Shetland) and is presumably the regular, but elusive, wintering individual that has been present for several winters. On North Uist (Outer Hebrides) the 1st-winter Killdeer again put in an appearance at Knockintorran from 7th-8th and the white Gyr Falcon was again at Balranald, N. Uist on 7th.

Lesser Yellowlegs: Stiffkey, Norfolk. (Photo: Kit Day)

Grey Phalarope: Filey, Yorks. (Photo: Richard Jackson) Grey Phalarope: Filey, Yorks. (Photo: Richard Jackson)

Long-stayers included the adult Short-billed Dowitcher at North Bull Island (Co. Dublin) to the 8th, the Lesser Yellowlegs is still at Stiffkey (Norfolk) and the two Grey Phalaropes were present at Filey Brigg (N. Yorks) throughout. In Norfolk the Glossy Ibis was at Berney Marshes on 11th, the Cattle Egret remains at Kingston Seymour (Somerset) as does the Great White Egret in Hampshire and another was reported in Cambridgeshire, whilst the wintering American Coot is still at Loch of Benston (Shetland). The Arctic Redpoll at Titchwell RSPB continues to provide an entertaining distraction for visitors to Norfolk, the Dusky Warbler remains at Kessingland (Suffolk) and the Richard's Pipit likewise at Kinmel Bay (Conwy).

Black Brant: Holkham, Norfolk. (Photo: Steve)

American Wigeon: Hayle Estuary, Cornwall. (Photo: David Wood) American Wigeon: Hayle Estuary, Cornwall. (Photo: David Wood)

Off Llanfairfechan (Conwy) the drake Black Scoter remains, the female Black Duck is still on Tresco (Scilly) as are the Lesser Scaups at Scotney GP (E. Sussex) and Abberton Res (Essex). There were 4 American Wigeons, 8 Green-winged Teals, 7 Ring-necked Ducks and Ferruginous Ducks were reported from Hampshire, Bedfordshire and Staffordshire. The only Surf Scoters were single drakes in Fife and Moray/Nairn, and the 2nd-winter drake King Eider was still off Peterhead (Aberdeenshire). Good numbers of Tundra Bean Geese remain from the record influx and a juvenile Snow Goose was in north Norfolk.

Long-tailed Duck: Crosby, Lancs. (Photo: Steve Round) Long-tailed Duck: Crosby, Lancs. (Photo: Sue Tranter)

Black Guillemot: Derbyhaven, Isle of Man. (Photo: Pete Hadfield) Snow Bunting: Salthouse, Norfolk. (Photo: Kit Day)

Great Grey Shrike: Pitts Wood, Hants. (Photo: Colin Lamond) Great Grey Shrike: Carsington Water, Derbys. (Photo: Simon Wilson)
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.wanderingbirders.co.nr/
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: 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/
Sean Gray: http://www.grayimages.co.uk
Peter Hadfield: http://www.manxbirdphotography.co.uk
Josh Jones: http://www.wanderingbirders.co.near/
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
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
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