TOTAL NUMBER OF SPECIES RECORDED IN BRITAIN AND IRELAND COMBINED IN 2015

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

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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 -http://www.birdinglothian.co.uk/#/april-images/45400324

Kris Gibb, www.birdinglothian.co.uk

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