As of 10 November 2015, a total of 430 species have been recorded this year

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Monday, 31 May 2010


There is a very bright male TRUMPETER FINCH at Cley NWT Reserve, Norfolk, this evening, showing very well on the seaward side of the shingle bank, 100 yards to the east of the far end of the East Bank to the north of Arnold's Marsh. It was initially discovered on Blakeney Point early morning, close to the Lifeboat Station, but disappeared soon after and was later relocated early afternoon where it is now.

The bird is showing very well and there is no necessity to flush it, nor any requirement to photograph it at point blank range. I understand that there was an initial period of flushing and disturbance when news of its rediscovery was first released, apparently under the ruse of photography........

This represents the second record of this North African nomadic vagrant in Norfolk and falls hard on the heels of the first-summer male on Blakeney Point from 31 May to 4 June 2008 (British Birds 102: 592, plate 390).

Friday, 28 May 2010

WHITE-TAILED PLOVER in Merseyside - top billing

This is the UK400 Club Rare Bird Alert, issued at midnight on Friday 28 May 2010 and published in close association of Rare Bird Alert Pagers, whilst utilising additional information gleaned from the Regional Birdlines, Birdcall, BirdGuides and individual websites and blogs.

The outstanding news of course relates to that of the beautiful WHITE-TAILED PLOVER (Vanellus leucurus) which is gracing the lagoon at Seaforth Nature Reserve in Merseyside. The bird is frequently showing down to just a few yards from Hide A and has been exceptionally photographed. Members of Lancashire Wildlife Trust can apply for permits to visit the reserve but for the majority, observation can only be made at great distance through the steel perimeter fence guarding the dock and port area. Access from Cambridge Road and walk along the south side of Crosby Marine Lake to view - early mornings and evenings best to avoid heat glare.

It represents only the 5th White-tailed Plover to be recorded in Britain but occurs fairly hot on the heels of the most recently twitchable bird in June 2007 -:

1) An adult was present at Packington Gravel Workings (Warwickshire) from 12-18 July 1975 ((British Birds 69: 334; 70: 465-471; 71: 128; Ibis 120: 409);

2) One was photographed on The Fleet at Chesil Beach (Dorset) on 3 July 1979 (British Birds 73: 506; 74: 228);

3) A bird that flew in off the sea at Cleadon (Tyne & Wear) on 21 May 1984 was later relocated far inland at gravel pits near Telford (Salop) from 24-25 May 1984 (British Birds 78: 545; 79: 294-295; 91: 473);

4) An adult was present at Caerlaverock WWT (Dumfries & Galloway) from 6-8 June 2007 (British Birds 100: plate 187 & 101: plate 267), and later relocated at Leighton Moss RSPB, Lancashire, from 10-17 June (British Birds 101: 537-538).(Hesketh 2007, Birding World 20: 240-242). It was seen by over 1,800 observers during its stay.

For the second consecutive year, an adult male LITTLE BITTERN has returned to Loxton's Marsh at Ham Walls RSPB (Somerset), half a mile east of the main car park at Ashcott Corner. Like last summer, the bird is 'barking' repeatedly and showed very well high up on the reeds this evening. It arrived on Tuesday.

In South Yorkshire, a reeling male SAVI'S WARBLER is present for a second day in the Dearne Valley at Old Moor RSPB reserve, audible intermittently from the Wath Ings Hide, whilst a BLACK STORK was again seen over Osmond Flatt Farm at Deepdale Wood in County Durham. In Derbyshire, the male GREAT REED WARBLER continues to bellow out of the Phragmites at Straw's Bridge Pools, Ilkeston.

A female BLUE-WINGED TEAL paired with a drake Shoveler moved overnight between Groby Pool (Leics) and Diddington Pit, Little Paxton (Cambs), where it remained for a second day in the SW corner (but was selfishly flushed by two photographers at 1600 hours and not relocated). A WHISKERED TERN was also seen briefly in the county, hawking over the main pit at Ely Beet Factory early morning.

TEMMINCK'S STINTS today included singles at Cley Marshes NWT (Norfolk) and at Hosehill Lake scrape, Theale (Berks) and the two at Frampton Marsh RSPB South Scrape (Lincs) whilst a gorgeous female RED-NECKED PHALAROPE spent a second day on Lagoon III at Rutland Water Egleton Reserve (Leics). A PECTORAL SANDPIPER was found at Summer Leys NR, Earls Barton (Northants) this morning and remained all day visible from Pioneer Hide

At Spurn Point (East Yorks), a GOLDEN ORIOLE flew over the Canal Zone early morning and was later trapped at Kew Villa and a male COMMON ROSEFINCH was seen whilst nearby, 1-2 singing male COMMON ROSEFINCHES were present in the Flamborough Head area, along with a female RED-BACKED SHRIKE.

Up to 12 EUROPEAN BEE-EATERS remain on the Isles of Scilly, moving between St Martin's and St Mary's, along with several migrant GOLDEN ORIOLES, whilst another BEE-EATER flew east over Durlston Head (Dorset) late morning. Another migrant GOLDEN ORIOLE included a first-summer on Bardsey Island (Caernarfonshire) today.

A male RED-BACKED SHRIKE is present for a second day at Gramborough Hill, Salthouse (Norfolk) whilst in the south of the county, the very long-staying singing male WHITE-SPOTTED BLUETHROAT is still to be heard in the vicinity of the Lyle Hide at Welney WWT.

A wave of RED-FOOTED FALCONS has arrived in recent days with two males - an adult and a first-summer - over Wilstone Reservoir, Tring (Herts), a first-summer male in the Gurnard's Head/Sennen area (Cornwall) and two females over the North Wall at Breydon Water (Norfolk) for 20 minutes early afternoon.

In Northern Scotland, the drake KING EIDER and PECTORAL SANDPIPER remain on the Ythan Estuary (Aberdeenshire), with a RUSTIC BUNTING on Fetlar (Shetland), a EUROPEAN TURTLE DOVE on Coll (Argyll) and the COMMON CRANE at the Mill Dam of Rango (Orkney). The confiding RED-RUMPED SWALLOW was also again by the Doctor's Surgery at St Margaret's Hop on South Ronaldsay (Orkney) this evening.

A male BEARDED TIT at Conwy RSPB (North Wales) is an excellent record.

A COLLARED PRATINCOLE was apparently seen flying across Swan Pool at Sandwell Valley RSPB (West Midlands) yesterday. Also of interest was a WHITE-THROATED SPARROW on St Agnes (Scilly) yesterday.

In IRELAND, an outstanding four (three males and a female) RED-FOOTED FALCONS are present for a second day in the White Hole and Longtown area of Tacumshin Pools (County Wexford), with a further female in County Kildare at Timahoe West. A migrant GOLDEN ORIOLE is at Inishbofin Island (County Galway), whilst the summering adult FORSTER'S TERN remains at the East End Pool at Tacumshin and two drake Garganey and a female Marsh Harrier at nearby Lingstown.

Tuesday, 25 May 2010


Warblers R Us - Yorkshire's moulting IBERIAN CHIFFCHAFF (Mike Richardson) and Derbyshire's first-ever GREAT REED WARBLER (Daz Chapman)

We are now in to Week 21 of 2010 and before the end of May, the combined total number of species recorded in Britain and Ireland has climbed to a very impressive 350 species. This week's additions include WILSON'S PHALAROPE, Icterine Warbler, WESTERN BONELLI'S WARBLER, White-winged Black Tern and Red-breasted Flycatcher.

The beautiful female WILSON'S PHALAROPE remains for a fourth day at Seaforth NR (Merseyside), visible occasionally through the metal fence bordering Crosby Marine Park, whilst the two adult summer-plumaged WHITE-WINGED BLACK TERNS continue to commute for a third day between Lagoon III and the new Lagoon IV at Rutland Water Egleton NR (Leics). Meanwhile, the exceptionally confiding SQUACCO HERON that had spent three days at Snowland Fishery at Par (Cornwall) was not seen today.

On the Ythan Estuary (Aberdeenshire), both the BROAD-BILLED SANDPIPER and PECTORAL SANDPIPER remain (viewable from the Waulkmill Hide), and the drake KING EIDER further towards the river mouth with up to 600 Common Eider opposite Inches Road.

In Derbyshire, the county's first-ever GREAT REED WARBLER continues to perform in the small section of Phragmites at the western corner of the first pit north of the railway at Straw's Bridge NR, Ilkeston, situated north of the A609, whilst an exceptional find was of a female BLUETHROAT on the small reserve at Leasowe Lighthouse (Wirral), showing well every now and again in ditches near the wooden footbridge by the duck pond.

A first-summer male COMMON ROSEFINCH was trapped and ringed at Landguard Bird Observatory (Suffolk) early this morning, with an ICTERINE WARBLER the same at Spurn Warren (East Yorks), whilst passage GOLDEN ORIOLES today included at least 3 on Scilly. A further young male COMMON ROSEFINCH was singing on Ramsey Island (Pembs) whilst a EUROPEAN SERIN was reported from trees along Evington Lane at the entrance of the Leicester Golf Club, Evington (Leics). A male RED-BACKED SHRIKE was discovered in coastal scrub north of the Blackhall Rocks car park (County Durham)

In addition to the breeding pair in East Kent, PURPLE HERONS are also being seen at Stodmarsh and Grove Ferry Reserves (Kent) and at Minsmere RSPB (Suffolk) whilst the first putative Marsh Warbler of the spring was singing from dense vegetation at Thorpeness disused carvan site (Suffolk).

On the Outer Hebrides, an adult BLACK STORK bearing a white plastic ring was seen again this morning, this time soaring in the Lochboisdale area at the south end of South Uist, whilst Paul Higson discovered a RED-RUMPED SWALLOW late afternoon flying around the Doctor's Surgery at St Margaret's Hope on South Ronaldsay (Orkney).

The recent easterly winds saw a remarkable South Coast passage of Red Kites, involving up to 25 birds in Cornwall, and migrating with them were several BLACK KITES, including one well-photographed in West Cornwall and seen again today in the St Just/Carn Brea area and another today circling Sarisbury Green (Hants) for a while before drifting off north, presumably relocated in West Sussex as it drifted over Birdham towards Chichester. A RED-FOOTED FALCON was present briefly in Winterton North Dunes (Norfolk) before flying off NE early morning.

With the wind veering back Northwesterly, skua passage has resumed in the Outer Hebrides, with small numbers of Long-tailed and Pomarine passing, whilst WOOD SANDPIPER passage remains in full swing. TEMMINCK'S STINTS are plentiful, with 3 on the small pool between the Long Nanny and Bednell Bays (Northumberland), 3-4 on Pat's Pool, Cley NWT (North Norfolk), 2 on the pool north of the B9113 at Balgavies Loch SWT (Angus/Dundee), 2 at Port Clarence (Cleveland), 2 at Fiskerton Fen (Lincs) and further singles at Caerlaverock WWT Folly Pond (Dumfries & Galloway), Astley Lake, Swillington Ings YWT (West Yorks), Willen Lake North Basin (North Bucks) and at Diddington Pit, Paxton Pits NR (Cambs).

A female LONG-TAILED DUCK is summering at Pennington Marshes (Hampshire), roosting largely on the islands of the Fishtail Lagoon, whilst at the extreme NW end of Britain, Loch Braigh on Lewis (just NE of Stornoway) plays host to at least 122 summering individuals.

All 3 singing male IBERIAN CHIFFCHAFFS are still present, with those at Walderslade (North Kent) and Wentwood Forest (Gwent) and that at the end of a 3-mile hike at Potteric Carr YWT (South Yorks).

Friday, 21 May 2010

Lingering POMS on Sussex coast

Four POMARINE SKUAS remained off Splash Point from 10.02-11.45 this morning. Every now and then they would chase a Kittiwake at a reasonable distance out but mostly they were sat on the sea. However great views were obatined and a fine display. Supporting cast were 2 Black and 2 Little Terns along with many Arctic Terns.

My Dad this morning counted 10 Wall Browns and 14 Green Hairstreaks around the Frog Firle area near Seaford this morning (per Matthew Eade)


Sam and Lisa Williams did exceptionally well in capturing this female ASIATIC BROWN SHRIKE on film at Sennen Cove yesterday evening. The bird was highly mobile and elusive and skulking in the vegetation and bushes and eventually seen by about 35 local birders.

Thursday, 20 May 2010


One on pool north of B9113 750m east of Balgavies crossroads. Please view only from the road and avoid approaching the pool (either by entering the field or by going down the rather tempting field edge) as waders are nesting around both the pool and the field edge. Bird still present at 18:30 hrs this evening (Chris McGuigan)

TEMMINCK'S at Farmoor Reservoir - OXFORDSHIRE

A TEMMINCK'S STINT was on the causeway at Farmoor this evening, found by Dai John.


I was just setting up the scope on the edge of Derek's Eggs A1 Pit near Biggleswade and heard a call, then again. "Sounds like a Serin" I says to myself. I stopped and it called again nearer, then overhead and I caught sight of it - smallfinch, short tail with fork, flying away towards Sandy Heath transmitter, calling some more.

Other things at Derek's - A pair of European Turtle Doves flew north to south,pair of Oystercatchers, 3 Little ringed Plovers, 2 Ringed Plovers, at least two Lapwing broods, two Redshank (Richard Bashford)

TEMMINCK'S STINT at Paxton Pits - 2nd day

Also around this evening were 2 very smart summer plumage Sanderlings, 2 Avocets & a Greenshank. The Temminck's Stint was still present until 20:40 at least. As I arrived a Red Kite flying low above the A1 by the Diddington turning. (Jamie Wells, with Mark Brandon, Martin Davis, Dean Harlow, Neal Parkin, Martin Shadbolt, Mark Ward)

Wednesday, 19 May 2010

Clear weather pushes rarities on

Peter Macdonald obtained these excellent images of the adult summer SPOTTED SANDPIPER when it was in Lothian at the weekend

It was negative news on several rarities today - the Lancashire Stocks Reservoir Spotted Sandpiper has moved on, as has Rutland's first-ever Buff-breasted Sandpiper as well as the Canvey Island Woodchat Shrike

A BLACK STORK is currently wandering far and wide over Northern Scotland, last seen heading north over North Uist and Harriw (Outer Hebrides)


The ORIENTAL PRATINCOLE, photographed above by Mike Lawrence, continues to attract large numbers of admirers at Frampton Marsh RSPB, 3 miles SE of Boston (Lincs), favouring the islands and scrapes close to East Hide, a 15 minute walk from the main information centre. There are also a apir of Temminck's Stints near the 360 Hide.

A singing male GREAT REED WARBLER is still present WSW of Ileston at Straw's Bridge Ponds - the first record for Derbyshire. Park just north of the A609 High Lane East in the designated car park and skirt the first pond to the left and after passing under the railway bridge, turn immediately left and view the reeds at the western end of the lake at SK 453 416.

In North Kent, the long-staying singing male IBERIAN CHIFFCHAFF is still present two miles south of Chatham at Walderslade - park by the goalposts halfway along Chestnut Avenue then walk across the green and through the wood to the far side where the bird has a territory. Meanwhile, the Gwent male continues, singing frequently and showing well 8.5 miles NE of Newport at the east end of Wentwood Forest 100 yards south of the Cadira Beeches car park (from Llanvair Discoed, take Usk Road NW for two miles)

In North Norfolk, a single Temminck's Stint and Curlew Sandpiper are on the freshwater pool at Titchwell RSPB, with the Red-necked Grebe nearby in the creek at the north end of Gypsy Lane and the long-staying singing male WHITE-SPOTTED BLUETHROAT at Welney WWT.. In Suffolk, a beautiful male DOTTEREL continues to show well just south of Kessingland Caravan Park north of the sluice

In Aberdeenshire, a BLACK KITE appeared over Savoch Low Grounds at the Strathbeg RSPB reserve just after 1400 hours and appeared to drop down, whilst further north on Fair Isle (Shetland), a WHITE-THROATED SPARROW is present.

In West Sussex, two DOTTERELS continue for a third day north of Lancing at Steep Down in the recently sown pea field south of the trig point at TQ 169 073.

Relaunch of the Online News Service

Visit the address above and register your membership

Due to major problems with foreign spammers, the UK400 Club Rare Bird Alert email group (this is the one that contains all of the daily bird news and not this, the general UK400 Club group site) has had to be relaunched and can now be accessed at the address above.

Can all previous members kindly re-register with the new site/group. This new site will be moderated by me in terms of member access and please instruct me of your correct name when joining as those without recognisable identities will not be admitted (Lee G R Evans)

BLACK KITE at Strathbeg RSPB

A BLACK KITE was seen well flying over Savoch Low Ground this afternoon. After circling for a short while it landed close to the silt trap at Savoch (in one of the few corners that cannot be seen from anywhere). It has not been seen flying as of 3.30pm so it is presumably still there.

Other highlights today include three black tailed godwits, two Whimbrel and a single Little Ringed plover (news by kind courtesy of Dominic Funnell, Grampian Sites Manager)

Wednesday, 12 May 2010


Martin Benson made this exceptional find today of a BROAD-BILLED SANDPIPER in Broadford Bay on the Island of Skye.
It was marginally pipped by a bird at Tacumshin (County Wexford) just a few days ago

Sunday, 9 May 2010


This is the UK400 Club Rare Bird Alert for Sunday 9 May, issued at 2200 hours, and published in close association with Rare Bird Alert Pagers whilst utilising additional information gleaned from Regional Birdlines, BirdGuides and individual websites and email groups.

The undoubted find of the day was that of yet another (or the same) ORIENTAL PRATINCOLE in Britain, repeating last year's performance in West Sussex and East Kent. The bird was discovered on the North Scrape of Frampton Marsh RSPB mid-afternoon (Lincs) and remained until dusk, affording excellent views from the reserve's East Hide.

In West Cornwall, an American HOUSE FINCH of unknown origin continues to sing in Swingates garden on the Land's End peninsula. It is of the orange-yellow variant, suggesting perhaps a first-summer and suggesting either an escapee or an individual which has acquired new feathers on this side of the Atlantic. The species is abundant in captivity in Britain and Europe and offered for sale for as little as £20 per pair, with a bird in this plumage most likely of captive origin. It commutes between the Land's End complex car park, the property on the north side of the road and the bird feeders in Swingates garden, and represents the second record for Britain following a female-type on Fair Isle from 27-30 April 1966. Please park in the complex car park (£4.00 per car) and walk back to view. There is absolutely no access to the garden unless specifically invited.

In the same vicinity, a PURPLE HERON was present briefly on Brew Pool, Sennen, before flying off SE, whilst the eighth local WOODCHAT SHRIKE of the spring involved a bird east of Skewjack Farm north of the B 3315 and a EUROPEAN TURTLE DOVE discovered Swingates garden to its liking. A further WOODCHAT SHRIKE was on Scilly, near Pelistry Farm, St Mary's.

In the aftermath of the RED-RUMPED SWALLOW influx of last weekend, the long-staying bird is still at Meadowgate Lake, Rother Valley Country Park (South Yorks) whilst two very confiding birds remain for a second day by the dam at Arlington Reservoir (East Sussex).

An ORTOLAN BUNTING showed briefly this morning at Walney Island Bird Observatory Garden (Cumbria), following hard on the heels of the year's first at Portland Bill (Dorset) in recent days, whilst in South Wales, an adult ROSE-COLOURED STARLING lingered for at least its third day by the playing field at Flynnon-Wen at St David's (Pembrokeshire). A reeling male SAVI'S WARBLER near Leighton Moss RSPB (Lancs) is only the fourth of this species to be recorded this spring.

At Welney Refuge (Norfolk), the wide-ranging GREAT WHITE EGRET was present this morning whilst the long-staying male WHITE-SPOTTED BLUETHROAT remains on territory in the vicinity of the Lyle Hide, 450 yards north of the main information centre. Meanwhile, in North Norfolk, a COMMON CRANE has been present for the past week on Holkham Freshmarsh. The female MONTAGU'S HARRIER bearing the French wing-tags continues to cause havoc on the scrape at Minsmere RSPB (Suffolk), taking concerning numbers of wader chicks on its frequent visits.

With the wind remaining in the Northeast, the first-summer male WOODCHAT SHRIKE extends its residency in Winterton South Dunes (Norfolk), showing extremely well on the isolated Birches and gorse scrub 350 yards south of the beach car park, whilst in the Midlands, a very confiding EURASIAN HOOPOE continues to delight a constant stream of admirers at Clayhanger Marsh (West Midlands) (see photographs above, taken by Darren Chapman).

In the north of Scotland on the Shetland Islands, 3 DOTTEREL are at Mid Field on Ronas Hill, with a Garganey and Ruff on the Loch of Hillwell and two COMMON CRANES in the Baltasound area of Unst at Belmont, whilst further south, a BLACK STORK drifted across the Farr junction in the Findhorn Valley (Speyside) yesterday afternoon.

It has been a surprisingly slow start for the annual TEMMINCK'S STINT passage with just three birds on offer today - all together on the North Scrape on Cley Marshes NWT (North Norfolk). However, WOOD SANDPIPERS have been in reasonable supply, with 4 on the flooded paddocks at Cross Ness (London), 3 at Pulfin and High Eske NR near Beverley (East Yorks), 2 on the Spoonbill Flash at Fairburn Ings (West Yorks), 2 at Summer Leys NR (Northants) and others at Bothal Pond (Northumberland), North Cave Wetlands (East Yorks), Standlake Common NR (Oxon) and Wanslip Meadows (Leics). DOTTEREL today included four in a ploughed field near the Loch of Tankerness (Orkney Mainland) near Mill Sand (at HY 513 084), two on Pendle Hill (Lancs), three still on the SW slope of Brown Wardle Hill, Wintergrove Reservoir (Greater Manchester), four still showing well in the pea field at North Cotes (North Lincs) (at TA 363 014), two briefly on the limestone pavement at the Great Orme (Conwy) and a female on Blackcraig Hill (Ayrshire) and another five that flew west over Frampton Marsh (Lincs) early morning. The PECTORAL SANDPIPER was again at Top Tank on Saltholme Pools RSPB (Cleveland) this morning.

A summer-plumaged WHISKERED TERN visited Dungeness RSPB Reserve (Kent) yesterday whilst at the opposite end of the country, the very bright male IBERIAN CHIFFCHAFF continues to hold territory at Walderslade Woods, 250 yards in from Chestnut Avenue. In what has actually been an excellent spring for this Mediterranean species, another singing male was present in Norfolk Breckland for several days recently.

An apparent pair of NORTH AMERICAN GREEN-WINGED TEALS arrived at Dynevor Pools (at SN 608 222) in Llandeilo (Carmarthenshire) today, with the pair of COMMON CRANES still dancing on the Pevensey Levels viewed from Herstmonceux Churchyard (East Sussex).

The first wave of EUROPEAN NIGHTJARS are now returning to Britain to breed, with a bird performing this evening in Regent's Park (Central London), but GOLDEN ORIOLES and EUROPEAN HONEY BUZZARDS still remain very much in the minority. A pair of nesting PURPLE HERONS could represent one of the few breeding attempts if successful.

In IRELAND, the regular returning adult FORSTER'S TERN reappeared at the east end of Tacumshin Pools (County Wexford), with the PACIFIC DIVER again off the Martello tower at Finavarra Point (County Clare). Meanwhile, a drake Ring-necked Duck remains at Inch Island Lake (County Donegal), the long-staying GREATER SHORT-TOED LARK is still on Ballycotton Beach (County Cork), whilst a EUROPEAN TURTLE DOVE made landfall on Cape Clear Island (Co. Cork).

Tuesday, 4 May 2010

Lothian Sightings Summary - April 2010

Star Bird of the month was this male White-spotted Bluethroat at Skateraw, photographed by Mike Thrower

APRIL SUMMARY - Despite often being a month for good migrants, April surprised many with some cracking county birds and did not fail to impress or fall short of the high expectations. Bird of the month for most was a Hoopoe on the Lothian / Borders border at Dunglass, discovered on the 4th it was often elusive but did remain in the area until the 7th at least and gave most the chance to see this smart overshoot on Lothian`s side of the border. It was later learnt that the bird was probably present for at least a couple of days before it was found, apparently being seen by residents of Dunglass Mill on the 2nd.

Those quick off the mark had the chance to see both the Hoopoe and a superb female Bluethroat on the same day, with the latter at Skateraw also found on the 4th when it showed extremely well and was reported only briefly again on the 5th. One of the most surprising records of the month though was an inland Wryneck for just one afternoon near Loanhead on the 28th, a reminder of the rewards you can get by working a local patch even miles from the coast.
Backing up these fantastic birds were the 2 Shore Larks (remaining from March) in the Skateraw / Torness area which departed sometime after the 7th, a drake Surf Scoter off Ferny Ness reported three times from the 12th - 20th, 2 Avocets over the east beach in Dunbar on the 17th, a Tundra Bean Goose at Tyninghame from the 3rd - 5th before moving to Redside Cottages from the 18th - 24th, Little Ringed Plovers at Musselburgh on the 21st, 25th & 28th and 2+ Dotterel heard over Scald Law (Pentlands) on the 30th.

After a good winter for the species at least one Water Pipit stayed into April with a bird moulting into summer plumage still at Barns Ness on the 2nd, up to 5 Black Redstarts were reported including males at Belhaven Bay (2nd) and Skateraw (20th).

A good tally of 6 migrant Ospreys went over the county during the month and reports of Marsh Harrier included one over Gullane on the 29th and a possible at Danskine Loch on the 16th. White-winged Gulls could still be found with Iceland Gull at Blackness on the 10th and Glaucous Gull on Threipmuir Reservoir on the 24th, a Great Northern Diver was off Aberlady on the 15th and the wintering female Smew on Linlithgow Loch was last seen on the 4th bringing it's lengthy stay to an end.

The majority of returning migrants arrived in the second half of the month, most notable were a female Pied Flycatcher at Harlaw Res. (Pentlands) on the 24th, a male Common Redstart at Yellowcraig on the 26th, Wood Warblers in Auchendinny and Penicuik on the 24th and a Nuthatch at Barns Ness also on the 24th deserves a mention. Throughout the month there was also a notable arrival of Tree Pipits and a good showing of Grasshopper Warblers, including Lothian's earliest ever in Roslin on the 11th.

A White Stork seen over Buckstone (Edinburgh) on the 8th and then again over the Pentland Hills on the 11th is presumably a returning bird and almost certainly an escape, a Black Swan first seen off Ferny Ness on the 23rd before moving to Musselburgh for the rest of the month and a White-tailed Eagle at Whiteadder in the second half of the month fall just about into the same category.

April Images -

Kris Gibb,

Monday, 3 May 2010


Highlight of a spin out on the bike late this afternoon was a RED-RUMPED SWALLOW near Chigborough Lakes. The bird was initially over the fishing lake on the east side of the road opposite Chigborough Farm, along Chigborough Road, off the Goldhanger Road, the B1026 at approx 7.15pm. It then disappeared as the locals arrived but thankfully was relocated on the newlake east of Rook Hall Fm, just east of the lake it was first on. Viewing access along a footpath off Chigborough Road, through Rook Hall Fm to viewlake at TL883085. Room for one or two cars to park on the road or perhaps better to park at the Chig lakes Reserve carpark 200m further along the road and walk back. Also there, needless to say, c80 Swallow and a few House and Sand Martin. A male Marsh Harrier passed over south, also Sparrowhawk and Grey Wag. Lofts Fm had c150 each of Swallow and House Martin and a few Sand Martin and Yellow Wag. At Heybridge Pits a Common Nightingale was singing at the basin end and another new arrival was singing in the main reedbed (Russell Neave)


had the good fortune to find a RED-RUMPED SWALLOW at Gunners Park this evening. Initially only present for less than 2 minutes with House Martins in front of a heavy shower, it then reappeared some 40 minutes later and continued to show well, at arms length at times, for another 2 hours. Also present were a Common Sandpiper on the lake, a few Swifts and a Harbour Porpoise offshore (Neil Chambers)

Strathbeg DOTTEREL trip

A trip of 8 DOTTERELS in the second field south of the Tufted Duck Hotelat approx NK055620 (per Dominic Funnell)

More Cambs news hot off the press

3 Temminck's Stints still today at Tubney Fen, west of Reach TL554665 (per

The Red-rumped Swallow is still around Gunwade Lake, Ferry Meadows CP at 12.15pm (per and at Grafham Water, 2 Ring Ouzels still 11am (Bruce Martin)(per Mark Hawkes)


Curlew Sandpiper in partial summer plumage on Berry Fen from ca. 08.00 -08.45, but later, when I came past at 09.30, I couldn't relocate it, so it may well have gone.

Otherwise Great White Egret still on Little Fen, Common Greenshank, drake Garganey - flew off towards Ouse Fen, 6 Egyptian Geese - flew off down river and Common Sandpiper - Needingworth Quarry Lake

Ouse Fen was deadly dull; I'd expected a few waders but absolutely nothing. Last night, 1 flyover Whimbrel and a Common Sandpiper on Sophie's Pool. Plus lots of rain and freezing cold winds (Richard)

Grafham Water today

Between the rain and hail showers from 07.30-10.00

Turnstone on dam
Common Sandpiper on dam
Ring Ouzel, 2 still NW of Marlow CP at 9am at TL164683.
Great Northern Diver 2cy just west of Marlow CP

Good numbers of Swifts still, plus Swallows and Martins (Mark Hawkes, Colin Addington)


The pair of DOTTEREL still present close to the gates at the Long Mynd gliding station this morning at 0730Two Golden Plover close by(per Ed Birch)