Friday, 4 November 2011


Another brilliantly sunny and vaguely mild day today, following a pretty good one yesterday where a wander towards Hugh Town saw a Whinchat and 2 Black Redstarts on Porthmellon and another 2 ‘Black Reds’ on Town Beach while 3 Raven flew over (the most I’ve seen together still my return – but I think there’s 4 kicking about) . Old Town churchyard felt rare but provided only singularities of Chiffchaff and Blackcap form.

Today felt good. Probably because it was sunny and still – so felt good to be in! The moth traps contained more migrants however diversity was low with 68 Rusty Dot Pearl, 4 Rish Veneer and 11 White-speck. Post trapping the temperature increased drawing out the male Red-veined Darter but besides that the garden was quiet: 1 White Wagtail, 2 Skylark, 1 Swallow, 1 Chiffchaff and 1 Raven.

Red-green Carpet

Angle Shades

Red-veined Darter on Novermber 4th!

News of a new Wilson’s Snipe down at Lower Moors tickled my fancy so I popped down late morning for a gander. On route to the hides there was plenty of Chiffchaff and 2 Reed Bunting calling to each other near the Hilda Quick hide. A male Red-veined Darter was also along this bit of track but was way too flightly for pics unfortunately. Uponreaching the ISBG The Wilson’s Snipe showed well but semi-distantly with some nice comparative Common Snipe - with only bins I couldnt get all the features but it looked as good as the one thats been hanging around this autumn (whether or not this was the first or second bird I dont know! Looked different but I havnt seen the initial bird for a couple weeks) while a Greenshank jibbed out around the scrape:

Wilson's Snipe thing

This Greenshank was actually more entertaining than the Snipe!

Heading back out the hide I heard the ever present banging of tools echoing across from Old wait, that’s a bird! The heavy acro check/tik wasn’t in Old Town but in the reeds, it must be the Great Reed! And low and behold there it was sitting in a sallow around 50yds away where I quickly rattled off 4 record shots while broadcasting the news.

Great Reed Warbler (presumably the ringed bird) Lower Moors

This absolute bruiser of a warbler seemed unsettled, but inquisitive as it flew from bush to bush, closer and closer until it popped up in the reeds 10ft away! Just me and the bird, fantastic! It then carried on along it’s course moving across the track and towards the Hilda Quick hide where I lost it but could still hear it, then it stopped and totally vanished – cue the arrival of birders, bloody typical!

On my way back through Lower Moors 2 Yellow-browed Warblers were having a nice call to each other while the Dusky Warbler for once, showed well and then disappeared Great Reed styley. All I can say is that’s the best 2 hours spent I’veat Lower Moors pretty much ever!

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