14/07/2005
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Review of the Week: 7th-13th July 2005

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Sooty Tern: Cemlyn, Anglesey. (Photo: Steve Valentine) Sooty Tern: The Skerries, Anglesey. (Photo: Stuart Elsom)
Sooty Tern: The Skerries, Anglesey. (Photo: Adrian Webb) Sooty Tern: Cemlyn, Anglesey. (Photo: Alan Matthews)
Sooty Tern: The Skerries, Anglesey. (Photo: Chris Galvin) Sooty Tern: The Skerries, Anglesey. (Photo: Paul Bowyer)
Sooty Tern: Cemlyn, Anglesey. (Photo: Marc Hughes) Sooty Tern: Cemlyn, Anglesey. (Photo: John Malloy)

On Anglesey the Sooty Tern delighted numerous visitors, whilst at the same time frustrating others! It provided a welcome boost to the tourist trade for local boat owners on 7th and 8th when it frequented The Skerries, then became more elusive as it was seen there on the evening of 9th and early on 10th. Mid-morning on the Sunday 10th it did the honourable thing and visited the tern colony at Cemlyn where it remained through to the evening, much to the delight of a large and appreciative audience, recalling events of many observers' only British Bridled Tern at the same site in 1988. Unlike the Bridled Tern, which remained through most of July that year, the Sooty Tern appears to have other plans as it went AWOL on 11th and then news broke that it had crossed the Irish Sea to Rockabill/Skerries (Dublin) on 12th, where it was also present late on 11th. Sadly for many Irish birders it was back at The Skerries and Cemlyn later on the 12th and the last sighting (so far!) was at Cemlyn first thing on 13th. There is, of course, the possibility that it will return and settle into a more regular pattern, so for those who have not 'connected' so far there is a possibility of a repeat performance...

Bonaparte's Gull: Skerries, Dublin. (Photo: Aidan Kelly) Sabine's Gull: Knottingley, W. Yorks. (Photo: Martin Fine)
Laughing Gull: Clonakilty, Cork. (Photo: Paul and Andrea Kelly) Laughing Gull: Clonakilty, Cork. (Photo: Kevin Cronin)

Not surprisingly the Sooty Tern dominated proceedings this week! A Glossy Ibis was seen briefly at Rye Harbour (E. Sussex) on Saturday 9th. A summer-plumaged Bonaparte's Gull was at Skerries (Dublin) from Saturday 9th onwards, and the two 1st-summer Laughing Gulls were still present during the week in Co. Cork in Cork City and Clonakilty. The inland Sabine's Gull at Knottingley (W. Yorks) was last seen on 7th. A Cattle Egret was at Colyford Common (Devon) from Wednesday 13th onwards.

Black-headed Wagtail: South Huish Marsh, Devon. (Photo: Paul Boulden) Black-headed Wagtail: South Huish Marsh, Devon. (Photo: Paul Boulden)

Rose-coloured Starling: Carnoustie, Angus and Dundee. (Photo: Mark Caunt) Rose-coloured Starling: Carnoustie, Angus and Dundee. (Photo: Mark Caunt)

A male Black-headed Wagtail at South Huish Marsh (Devon) from Friday 8th onwards was presumably the bird seen in late May and early June at West Charleton Marsh in the same county. A Tawny Pipit was reported from Kingston Seymour (Somerset) on Sunday 10th, and the 12th produced 'overshoots' in the shape of an Alpine Swift over Fowlmere (Cambs) and Bee-eater south at Spurn (E. Yorks). Two Rose-coloured Starlings were at Carnoustie (Angus/Dundee) at the end of the week, but other scarce passerines comprised just a female Red-backed Shrike at Gulberwick (Shetland) on 7th and a Marsh Warbler on Unst (Shetland) on 8th. Good numbers of Crossbills continue to be on the move and there was an unconfirmed report of a Two-barred Crossbill at Bentley Park Wood (Warks) on 9th.

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Kentish Plover: Great Yarmouth, Norfolk. (Photo: Will Bowell) Collared Pratincole: National Wetlands Centre, Carmarthen. (Photo: Bob Hazell)

Few rare waders were reported and those that were were brief stayers. These included a Semipalmated Sandpiper on the Bann Estuary (Londonderry) on 10th, Marsh Sandpiper at Holland Haven (Essex) and Lesser Yellowlegs at Buckenham Marshes (Norfolk) and South Huish Marsh (Devon). The Pacific Golden Plover in Cumbria was last reported from Anthorn on 8th and the Collared Pratincole was still present at the National Wetlands Centre (Carmarthen) on at least 13th. Four Red-necked Phalaropes were present on North Ronaldsay (Orkney). There were Kentish Plovers in Norfolk (Breydon Water/Great Yarmouth) and Dorset (two juveniles at Ferrybridge on 11th). The first Pectoral Sandpiper of the autumn was at Lough Beg (Londonderry) on 9th and 12th and was followed by others at Kingston (Moray/Nairn) from 10th-12th and Belfast Lough (Co. Antrim) on 13th.

Spoonbill: Blacktoft Sands, E. Yorks. (Photo: Andrew Huyton)

A Night Heron was at Attenborough NR (Notts) on 7th with the Cowpen Marsh (Cleveland) bird last reported the same day. On Scilly the immature Night Heron was again on St. Mary's on 13th. A Purple Heron was reported from Ilkeston (Derbys) on 10th and a White Stork was seen in Kent. It was a quiet week for seabirds (apart from some rare tern!), with a Cory's Shearwater off Anglesey on 10th and 11th and a Long-tailed Skua passing Flamborough Head on 10th the only sightings of note. At sea, the Scilly pelagics notched up two Wilson's Storm-petrels on 8th and 10th and one on 11th. A Ferruginous Duck was at Leighton Moss (Lancs) on 11th, the Ring-necked Duck remained in Somerset, as did a Surf Scoter in Aberdeenshire, American Wigeon in Angus/Dundee and Green-winged Teal in Cheshire and Argyll. A possible Red-footed Falcon at Onehouse (Suffolk) on 13th had apparently been present for several days. A Spotted Crake was on St. Mary's (Scilly) on 12th with another in Argyllshire and good numbers of Quail continue be reported as part of the summer influx.

Bittern: Titchwell, Norfolk. (Photo: Peter Simpson) Bittern: Titchwell, Norfolk. (Photo: Peter Simpson)
Spotted Redshank: Blacktoft Sands, E. Yorks. (Photo: Sean Gray) Greenshank: Blacktoft Sands, E. Yorks. (Photo: Sean Gray)
Arctic Skua: Minsmere, Suffolk. (Photo: Mike Parker) Little Egret: Wicken Fen, Cambs. (Photo: Garth Peacock)
Little Tern: Great Yarmouth, Norfolk. (Photo: Will Bowell) Lesser White-fronted Goose: Conwy RSPB, Conwy. (Photo: Graham Eaton)
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
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/
Lee Dingain: http://www.leedingain.co.uk
Jon Dunn: http://www.surfbirds.com/blogs/Stercorarius/
Andrew Easton: http://home.clara.net/ammodytes/
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
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