Helen and I were lucky enough to spend Christmas and New Year on Lundy (22nd December 2017 until 2nd January 2018) for the first time. We had a magical time, despite the weather, which seemed a wintry rotation of mist, rain and high winds.
Bird-wise, we were treated to a Firecrest in Millcombe Valley, which showed during a couple of better weather days, on the 24th and 28th. One Goldfinch was seen around Windy Corner on the 30th.
|Firecrest, Millcombe, 28 Dec 2017 © Philip Lymbery
A Great Northern Diver toured the east coast of the island, being seen on the sea from the Landing Bay to Quarry Beach (24th, 26th and 31st).
|Great Northern Diver off Quarry Beach, 31 Dec 2017 © Philip Lymbery
A feeding party of Kittiwakes were seen each day off the east coast, with 500 or more birds recorded on the 29th. 30 Lesser Black-backed Gulls were also sat on the sea on the same day off The Ugly. A Merlin was seen before dusk on several afternoons over Quarter Wall, Halfway Wall or The Battery. A Fieldfare was seen at Threequarter Wall on the 27th, with a single bird also recorded in Barton Field on the 28th. The field played host to a busy feeding flock of Redwing, with 28 being counted by us on New Year’s Eve. Three female and one drake Teal spent late afternoon on Pondsbury on the 30th. The heavy rain meant that the island was very wet underfoot everywhere, meaning that feeding Snipe were scattered across the island and could be flushed pretty much anywhere, from the north end of the island to Quarter Wall. Our maximum count was of 8 birds accidentally flushed singly from various parts of the island on the 28th. A Stonechat was seen on Tibbett’s Hill on the 31st.
|Kittiwake off Lundy, 22 Dec 2017 © Philip Lymbery