Monthly Bird Review – August 2009

A relatively quiet month with most of the interest focused on the seasons Pelagic trips. Julys’ Marsh Sandpiper was still in residence at Porth Hellick Pool on the 1st and remained there until the 7th. The 1st also saw the first ‘birder only’ pelagic from St Mary’s travel to Seven Stones and produce more than nine Wilson’s Storm-petrels. On the 4th, adult and juvenile Med Gulls  were at Porthloo and remained in that general area throughout the month. A Wilson’s petrel was seen from the Scillonian III en-route to St Mary’s during the morning and Great, Balearic and Sooty Shearwaters were noted on the return journey later the same day.

A Great White Egret flew over Lower Moors and out over The Roads on the afternoon of the 6th and pelagic highlights on the 7th were Wilson’s Petrel, two Great Shearwaters and a Sabine’s Gull. An ‘all-day’ pelagic on the 8th produced two further Wilson’s Petrels and four Great Shearwaters. An elusive Melodious Warbler spent 6 days at Porth Minnack from the 11th and a Lesser Yellowlegs took the place of the Marsh Sandpiper as main attraction at porth Hellick Pool on the 12th. Two Wilson’s Petrels were seen from a pelagic on the 14th and a further six were noted the next day. A Wood Sandpiper and a Ruff joined the Yellowlegs on the 15th and a Buff-breasted Sandpiper spent the afternoon of the 16th on the airfield at St Mary’s. That days pelagic birders saw yet another Wilson’s Petrel as well as a good supporting cast which included nine Cory’s Shearwaters, two Great shearwaters and an adult Sabines Gull.

A Barred Warbler joined the Melodious at Porth Minnack on the 17th and a Pied Flycatcher was in the churchyard at Old Town. Another Pied Fly’ was on the Garrison the following day and four Wilson’s Petrels were seen from the days two pelagics. Another juvenile Med Gull was with the two at Porthloo on the 20th and a Nightingale began a nine day stay near the tennis courts on The Garrison. A Wryneck was below The Parsonage, St Agnes on the 22nd. The 23rd saw a Great Reed Warbler at Porth Hellick Pool which unfortunately turned out to be a ‘one-day-bird’. A pelagic on the 23rd produced eight Wilson’s Petrels, two Great Shearwaters and a Sabines Gull. An unseasonal Pale-bellied Brent Goose appeared on Tresco on the 27th and a Buff-breasted Sandpiper (possibly the St Mary’s bird of the 16th?) was at Castle down. The latter species was relocated on Bryher the next day and was joined by a Dotterel. Migrants on St Mary’s in the latter half of the month included Pied Flycatcher (2), Spotted Flycatcher (4), Wheatear (8), White Wagtail (2), Tree Pipit and Whinchat. Two further Wilson’s Petrels were seen from an evening pelagic on the 29th. The Lesser Yellowlegs departed the islands on the 28th.

Paul Freestone (c)ISBG 2009

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