Thursday, 6 September 2012

Finally September (1st September)

Another visit to Peninnis Head produced even more European migrants with a self-found WOOD WARBLER being the highlight (almost in the same hedge as the probable Melodious yesterday).  The coves and beaches held the usual array of Turnstones, Sandwich Terns, 16+ Ringed Plovers and 1 Dunlin whilst a trip to Lower Moors produced a single Water Rail, calling in the open.

Ringed Plover

My first visit to Telegraph was not all that eventful with Wheatears, and a single flyover Golden Plover and the highlight, 2 Tree Pipits.  The commoner butterflies were also out including Red Admiral, Speckled Wood and Common Blues.  I was about to wander around the Garrison when I bumped into non other than Spider.  He soon updated me on the news that a Citrine Wagtail had been found on the opposite end of the island.  A short lift later from Spider and I was stood in the middle of some bulb fields with absolutely no idea were to start searching.  It seemed like an impossible task to track down a bird the size of a wagtail on an island with an area in excess of 6.29km squared.  Salakee Downs was the most information I had to go on but I couldn't find anything.  A wander around the airfield didn't produce any wagtails either.  Finally, I bumped into my first visiting birder and together attempted to track it down by thoroughly searching Lower Moors and the adjacent pastoral fields.  We eventually gave up and headed our separate ways.  A last resort came to mind, Carn Leh Cove, where I had last seen White Wagtails and plenty of Rock Pipits only a few days ago feeding on the beach.  I managed to reluctantly drag myself there and lifted my bins to see non other than the JUV. CITRINE WAGTAIL feeding contently on the beach!!!

juvenile Citrine Wagtail at Carn Leh Cove

I could barely believe my luck, I quickly took some record shots before walking as fast as I could back to the Pilots Gig to show Bryan Thomas in the kitchen.  He seemed pleased with the record before calling Spider and soon half the town (me included) were on the beach again searching in vein for the departed Wagtail.  Only partial compensation for the dippers was a Pied Flycatcher fly-catching on the beach.  Given that I found the bird on the opposite end of the island it may be possible that it could have been a different bird although refinding it against such odds was definitely the highlight of my Scilly trip!

Pied Flycatcher perched on the stone art-work

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