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Sunday 7 May 2017

6th May – Hard going in strong easterlies

Cold and blustery easterlies once again prevented any ringing and made birding a challenge, except well down over the western sidelands or a few other strategic sheltered spots. There were distinctly fewer migrants than on Friday, especially on the Swift, hirundine and warbler fronts, but still some good birds to be seen, among them: a Kestrel, 10+ Dunlins (including a flock of six seen by Alan Rowland at North End), a Ringed Plover, two Whimbrels (South West Field), a Snipe (at Widow's Tenement Pond), 5 Swifts, 51 Swallows, 16 House Martins, a female White Wagtail (sidelands below South West Field), two flava Wagtails, including a female Blue-headed (M. f. flava) and a female Yellow (M. f. flavissima) in St Helen's/Barton Fields, 2 Whinchats (Tent Field/South West Field wall and Rocket Pole area), a male Whitethroat (Millcombe), a male Blackcap (Smelly Gully), 3 Sedge Warblers (Stoneycroft, Tent Field wall and Smelly Gully), a handful of Willow Warblers and Chiffchaffs, and a female Pied Flycatcher (Millcombe)

A look at the weather map showed why there had been so few overnight arrivals and such little visible migration by day, with rain in the English Channel effectively blocking most migration from the continent.

MS Oldenburg did a 'Splash & Dash', taking advantage of a drop in the wind to do a quick turnaround late in the day, for staying passengers only.

Yellow Wagtails & Lundy Pony, Barton Field, 5 May © Tim Jones

Male Yellow Wagtail, Barton Field, 5 May © Tim Jones

Female Blue-headed Wagtail, Barton Field, 6 May © Tim Jones

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