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Monday 22 July 2013

Day trip Saturday 20 July

An extended day trip. Hot and sunny, with the gusty easterly breeze being pleasantly refreshing for a change – in contrast to the bone-chilling easterlies we have so often experienced on Lundy! On the crossing, hundreds of Manx Shearwaters feeding close to the mainland off Morte Point, plus three Puffins about half-a-mile out from the island. We completed coverage of Lundy for the Devon Bird Atlas with a one-hour Timed Tetrad Visit from the Landing Bay up to the Castle, accompanied by Seasonal Assistant Warden Aislinn Mottahedin-Fardo. After completing the TTV we walked along the West Side to Threequarter Wall and back S along the main track and Terrace. At least 50 Puffins in Jenny's Cove (up to 35 on land) and 30 at St Philip's Stone. Several hundred Guillemots still on the ledges at Jenny's. Several Kittiwake chicks about to fledge, with well-developed juvenile plumage and lots of energetic wing-exercising (how do they not fall off?!). There was a trickle of "autumn" (!) migration already, with nine Swifts and five Sand Martins passing through. We didn't get to Pondsbury, but other visitors reported a Green Sandpiper there. Among the breeding landbirds, an adult Pied Wagtail was feeding two well-grown juveniles in Lower Millcombe, a very juvenile Goldfinch with adults in St John's Valley, several family parties of Linnets (particularly in Middle Park), a Meadow Pipit carrying food to a nest site near Hanmers, and a singing Chiffchaff in Millcombe. Butterflies included: 4 Graylings (West Side and the Ugly), 350+ Meadow Browns, 6 Red Admirals, 5 Small Tortoiseshells and 20 Large Whites. Also about 20 male Oak Eggar moths, a few burnet moths (Five-spotted?) whizzing by at high speed and one very smart Rosechafer beetle. Tim Davis & Tim Jones

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