"There seemed to be a mass evacuation of migrants from the island just before the storm, luckily, but a few did linger including a beautiful female colour-ringed Wheatear below Benjamin’s Chair (see photo). All the seabirds disappeared from the cliffs and coastline too, bar some gangs of gulls which have been following Tom about to grab a quick meal of sheep feed in the Generator Field and on Ackland's Moor (c350 Herring Gulls today). Other than that there hasn’t been much about to count as the birds have hidden themselves well from the cold. I did have one Skylark singing its heart out in a snow flurry on Saturday afternoon which was a massive surprise – poor thing must be well eager to get on with breeding."
Tony Taylor reports that the Wheatear was ringed at Benjamin's Chair on 25 May 2014 and has been seen there regularly every year since, breeding successfully in 2015, 2016 and 2017. As Tony says, "Let's hope she has the reserves to see her through to some real spring weather."
|Colour-ringed female Wheatear, Benjamin's Chair, 18 Mar © Dean Jones|
|Golden Hair Lichen in the snow, Dead Cow Point, 18 Mar © Dean Jones|
|Spring heavily disguised as winter on the plateau, 18 Mar © Dean Jones|
|Not Spitsbergen, but Jenny's Cove... 18 Mar © Dean Jones|