Thursday, 19 April 2012

Going Loco(stella)

Kittiwake rainbow. Oxymoron.

Coorrrr. Phew. Maaaah. Iiiish. Etc. What a week or however long its been. Ups and downs in every aspect. Wind, seas, temperatures, visitor numbers and all importantly BIRD numbers haha.

So in a nutshell the past week has seen us closed for 5 out of the last 7 days, 3 days due to stormy Northerlies, 1 day for Southerly gales and today, due to brisk Easterlies and rain. These latter conditions deposited a spectacular early spring fall that most birders dream of. We lived (and live) it!

Whats at the end of the rainbow? Inner Farne! And loads of birds!

Today brought great diversity and numbers of birds including 42 Robin, 4 Wheatear, 1 Ring Ouzel, 2 Blackbird, 8 Song Thrush, 1 Grasshopper Warbler, 2 Blackcap, 1 Willow Warbler, 7 Chiffchaff, 3 Rook, 2 Brambling and 1 Lesser Redpoll. A classic day where birds were watched dropping out of the sky and one dead stick headge held 20 Robin, 2 Blackcap and a Grasshopper Warbler. Amazing. Here’s some photos:

Zoothera style Ring Ouzel photo.

Lesser Redpoll adding to our biodiversity.

This is whats its about! Grasshopper Warbler chilling out under one of our benches1

Sick. I go loco over these!

Corking Wheatear.

Ring Ouzel trying to avoid my elongated lens..

Classice Farnes...Willow Warbler (or Wallblers haha).

Rooks flying over being rare.

Robins everywhere!

Otherwise despite (or perhaps due to) the unsettled conditions, grounded migranst have been sparse. Yesterday saw a Hooded Crow pass west while a 1st year Med Gull brought quality to the evening roost, which a couple of days ago held a stonking 418 Common Gull! 

This male Blackcap trapped himself in our Info Centre in strong Southerly winds, and seemed pretty shell-shocked at his situation!

But he perked up once the sun came out giving classic Farnes views!

On the same day this female Blackcap also turned up and acted totally rare1

Non-passerine action in serrator form..(Red-breasted Merganser)

The black (and grey) speck is a Hooded Crow I promise!

Sandwich Terns with part of the Common Gull superflock.

Knock knack Chiffchaff let me in!

This female Reed Bunting was nice.

The breeders have been getting hammered by all these winds, but some brief favourable blows brought our first Arctic Terns while the first Eider nests are also appearing, its all gearing up!

Big waves hitting the cliff nesters.

The sexiest auk...the Razorbill.

Kittiwakes loving life in the wind.

Guillemot eggs are becoming slowly commoner.

Eiders are back on the land.

The price of cliff nesting:

Avian vibes have been very positive but the leppers (that is, moths) have been getting down also. One of the noctuid (a larger type of moth) pupa I collected from a dry stone wall on Inner Farne hatched the other day, revealing a spanking Angle Shades. Great moth, and of course definitive proof of breeding which just shows you that records can lie as this species was only recorded twice last year and was presumed an immigrant….how wrong I was!

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