|Mystery bird! Go on then, if you saw this on the far side of the Barkland fields, whilst struggling to stay upright in a howling westerly wind what would you say it was? I'm glad I'd had better views the day before! (Answer in the text below).|
The Swinhoe’s Petrel was also heard calling in the small hours of the night of the 15th/16th despite there being no trapping (or tape playing), but has not been heard since as strong westerly winds have dominated the last few days.
Interestingly, the first Swinhoe’s Petrel that was trapped (the bird that turned up when I was on holiday and has not been seen again) has been shown by Dr Martin Collinson and his team at Aberdeen University to have been a female. Hopefully recordings of the call of the second bird will help to confirm its sex (we suspect it is also female).
|The Swinhoe's Petrel (by Kieran Lawrence)|
|Citrine Wagtail and White Wagtail outside the Obs this afternoon (where Susannah was able to add it to her kitchen window list!).|
|Citrine Wagtail, apparently karate-kicking its prey to death.|
|The Spotted Redshank (pictured here with a Dunlin) has become more settled on Da Water.|
|Ruff is a classic early August passage wader. Easterly winds in the next week could see some slightly scarcer species, such as Curlew Sandpiper or Little Stint turning up. Or perhaps something rarer...|
|Black-tailed Godwit at Taft today.|
With the wind set to ease (Dave Wheeler tells us that the 52mph recorded yesterday made it the first ‘gale-day’ on Fair Isle since 28th April) during the course of tomorrow, before switching to the east during the night, I suspect we may have a bit more bird news to come soon. Barred Warbler, gales and checking the weather forecast every few hours – autumn is here!