15/04/2005
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Review of the Week: 7th-13th April 2005

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Great Spotted Cuckoo: Worthing, W. Sussex. (Photo: Marc Read) Great Spotted Cuckoo: Worthing, W. Sussex. (Photo: John Reeves)

Belted Kingfisher: Peterculter, Aberdeenshire. (Photo: Andrew Lawson) Belted Kingfisher: Peterculter, Aberdeenshire. (Photo: Andrew Lawson)

Last week was always going to be a difficult act to follow and so it was that there was a relative lull in proceedings with the departure of all three of the first-class rarities from last week. The Belted Kingfisher was last glimpsed early on the cold morning of Saturday 9th, then departed never to be seen again, much to the chagrin of those undertaking a leisurely drive to Aberdeenshire. The Great Spotted Cuckoo was slightly more obliging, remaining in Worthing until mid-morning Saturday 9th, then departing high to the north. Finally, the Short-toed Treecreeper was slight compensation for weekend birders, remaining at Bradwell-on-Sea until 10th.

Short-toed Treecreeper: Bradwell-on-Sea, Essex. (Photo: Andrew Easton) Short-toed Treecreeper: Bradwell-on-Sea, Essex. (Photo: Ian Butler)

An adult Ross's Gull was at Loch of Tankerness (Orkney) on Friday 8th and the Bonaparte's Gull was again at Thurso (Highland) the same day. A Black Kite was over Hythe (Kent) on Tuesday 12th and an escaped Black Kite at Abberton Reservoir (Essex) on 9th. The Gyr Falcon was again reported from Brandon Bay (Co. Kerry) on Wednesday 13th and a White-billed Diver was off Port Nis, Lewis (Outer Hebrides) on Wednesday 13th. In Hampshire a possible Iberian Chiffchaff was reported from Longparish on Saturday 9th, though no doubt other spring claims will follow in the coming weeks.

Hoopoe: Milton Keynes, Bucks. (Photo: Ian Simmons) Hoopoe: Milton Keynes, Bucks. (Photo: Garth Clarke)

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Great Grey Shrike: Arcot Ponds, Northumberland. (Photo: John Malloy) Great Grey Shrike: Arcot Ponds, Northumberland. (Photo: Alan Gilbertson)

Waxwing: Lincoln, Lincs. (Photo: Russell Hayes) Waxwing: Lincoln, Lincs. (Photo: Matt Latham)

Over a dozen Hoopoes were reported during the week and a similar number of Great Grey Shrikes were noted. Wrynecks were at Holford (Somerset) on 9th and Ballyvergan (Co. Cork) on 11th, and the long-staying bird was again at Land's End (Cornwall) on 14th. Waxwings remain in exceptional numbers with three-figure flocks at 10 locations, including 350 at Armthorpe (S. Yorks) - with this number around perhaps a breeding attempt or two is a distinct possibility? Serins were at Portland (Dorset) on 8th and 11th, one was at Reculver (Kent) on 11th and there was a report of 3 over the London Wetland Centre (London) on 12th. The Dusky Warbler remains in Suffolk and the Richard's Pipit in Conwy and a possible Ashy-headed Wagtail was again in Kent on the Oare Marshes.

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Kentish Plover: Dawlish Warren, Devon. (Photo: Dave Stone)

Short-billed Dowitcher: Booterstown Marsh, Dublin. (Photo: Paul and Andrea kelly)

A Kentish Plover was at Breydon Water (Norfolk) from 12th onwards and another at Dawlish Warren NNR (Devon) from 13th onwards. The Short-billed Dowitcher remained at Booterstown Marsh (Co. Dublin) and the Lesser Yellowlegs was still at Stiffkey (Norfolk). A Purple Heron was on Tresco (Scilly) from 7th-9th, but was found dead on 13th, another was at North Warren (Suffolk) on 14th and the adult at Wareham (Dorset) was last seen on 12th. A Great White Egret was in Norfolk on 7th and one at Studland Heath (Dorset) on 14th. The Cattle Egrets remained in Somerset and Gloucestershire, and a Spotted Crake was at Grove Ferry (Kent) on 12th; the St. Mary's (Scilly) individual was also seen again during the week. A Quail at Chart Sutton (Kent) on 12th had been present since the end of March.

Purple Heron: Wareham Forest, Dorset. (Photo: Steve Evans) Purple Heron: Wareham Forest, Dorset. (Photo: Bob Ford)

Common Crane: Fenham Mill, Northumberland. (Photo: John Malloy) Common Crane: Fenham Mill, Northumberland. (Photo: Tom Tams)

The American Coot remains on Benbecula (Outer Hebrides), as does the Black Scoter off Conwy and Black Ducks on Scilly and in Co. Mayo. King Eiders were seen in Aberdeenshire, Shetland and Dumfries & Galloway and there were nearly a dozen Ring-necked Ducks, half-a-dozen Green-winged Teal, four Surf Scoters and an American Wigeon. Skua-watchers detected 9 Pomarine Skuas passing the Outer Hebrides on 9th with singles there on 10th and 13th; singles passed Bowness (Cumbria) on 9th and 11th with 2 on 10th and one passed South Stack (Anglesey) on 7th.

Ring-billed Gull: Oban, Argyll. (Photo: Bill Jackson) Ring-billed Gull: Oban, Argyll. (Photo: Bill Jackson)

Iceland Gull: Oban, Argyll. (Photo: Bill Jackson) Little Gull: Sandy WP, Carmarthen. (Photo: Mark Newton)

Slavonian Grebe: Audenshaw Res, Gtr Manchester. (Photo: Sean Gray) Slavonian Grebe: Audenshaw Res, Gtr Manchester. (Photo: Sean Gray)

Lesser Spotted Woodpecker: Clara Vale, Durham. (Photo: John M Foster) Lesser Spotted Woodpecker: Clara Vale, Durham. (Photo: John M Foster)
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.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/
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.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
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