• Sora
  • Hoopoe

    Hoopoe © D Jones

  • Baltimore Oriole

    Baltimore Oriole © T Wright

  • Common Rosefinch

    Common Rosefinch © D Jones

  • Great Northern Diver

    Great Northern Diver © S Cossey

  • Red-rumped Swallow

    Red-rumped Swallow © D Fox

  • Lapland Bunting

    Lapland Bunting © R Campey

  • Pale-bellied Brent Goose

    Pale-bellied Brent Goose © R Taylor

Something a little different today resulted in great views of Storm Petrels dancing over their rocky breeding grounds and skies full of Manx Shearwaters returning to their burrows. The largest counts were after midnight due to the beautiful starry skies we were graced with. However, based on the observations from yesterday evening, we believe there were about ~1000 birds offshore and a large number of them were overhead whilst we were out and about.
2024 06 05 RedKite NorthLight ThomasWestonRed Kite from North Light. ©ThomasWeston

A migration watch from North End resulted in a good varitety of species despite it being June. There was a steady trickle of Swallows heading North in small flocks. Some of these were coming from the West quite low, gaining height and then heading over North Light with purpose. There were small flocks of House Martins heading North with these being particularly chatty as they flew North out to sea. Surprisingly, a few Sand Martins also headed North out to sea. These in particular should be breeding elsewhere. Presumably the Pondsbury Grey Heron tried to head North out over North Light but got a few hundred metres before being harassed by gulls and turning back. After two attempts it headed back south and was back on Pondsbury this afternoon looking grumpy. More surprising was a Red Kite that came as far as the stairs, but similar to the heron, was harrassed by gulls and turned around. About 15 minutes later, a second attempt was made, and the bird gained good height before heading a few hundred metres out. Presumably, because it could not clearly see Wales, and a slight headwind was coming inoff the sea, it turned around and came back. After settling again, it made a third attempt an hour later and was lost to view. The only reason it was lost to view was because it must have gone west and flew in off the sea at Gannet's Rock. The Fulmar, Herring Gulls and Great-Black Backed Gulls were seriously unhappy about the bird's presence and were quite nervous as the bird flew overhead. The kite was only the second of the year.

Other bits and bobs seen today included lots of signs of breeding birds. This ranged from birds singing, nesting material being carried, new chicks cheeping away, food being collected and fledged young. Most notable species were the range of seabirds we hae on the island but also the Meadow Pipits, Skylarks, Wheatears who seem to be having a good breeding season in parts of the island.

The first of a two-day seabird census in Jenny’s Cove was undertaken today with the help from RSPB staff. The census considers every cliff face and aims to count as many of the seabirds in the Jenny’s Cove area. To confirm our findings, results will be posted in a subsequent update on our Latest news tab. However, for you keen readers, totals just for Jenny’s look really positive so far, so let’s hope tomorrow will be similar.