Moderate westerly winds for most of the week. Generally overcast with occasional rain showers. The average temperatures remained at around 15° each day.
A single Mallard duckling is still around on Barton Pond, fingers crossed that it is now big enough to avoid most predators. Only four Teal ducklings were seen on Pondsbury this week. A second female was also seen and undertaking distraction displays, potential suggesting another brood is present. Two Canada Geese were seen on the 10th flying high west over Southwest Field.
A single Swift was seen over Millcombe on the 11th and a Cuckoo was flying around the south of the island, including Millcombe, Rocket Pole and Brick Field. Three Collared Doves were seen again on the 6th. The highest count of Woodpigeon for the month was six on the 11th.
Puffins are still very busy around the West Coast, particularly Jenny’s Cove, with most feeding chicks. Large numbers of Manx Shearwater have been seen off the Ugly in the evenings this week as they gather before coming into their burrows.
A Sparrowhawk was seen over the Village on the 7th and the male Kestrel has been seen all week going back and forth with food to the nest on the West Coast.
A recently fledged Carrion Crow was hopping on the floor in Millcombe. It was ringed and then placed back into the undergrowth under the watchful eye of the parents. A high count of 14 Ravens was seen on the 7th, this includes a number of juveniles that have now come around Barton Field to find food.
Singles of Sand Martin were seen on the 10th and 11th. Four House Martin were seen on the 6th with a single on the 9th and two on the 12th. Swallow numbers are starting to increase again as non-breeding and failed breeding adults are heading south. A total of 16 were logged on the 12th. The resident pairs have still not laid eggs but there are now potentially four different pairs present.
The odd migrant warbler is still turning up with a Willow Warbler heard on the 7th. There was a surprise find of breeding Sedge Warblers in Quarter Wall Copse on the 8th – a male was present along with two young birds calling. Blackcaps were singing in Millcombe and Quarter Wall Copse and at least two pairs of Whitethroat are busy with young in Millcombe. Three singing Chiffchaff were heard in suitable breeding habitat along the East Coast and Millcombe on the 9th.
The bird of the week was a Rosy Starling found by Richard and Rebecca Taylor by Old Light on the 6th. It was later seen in Barton Field and stuck around until the 8th. It was a stunning male in full pale pink plumage.
|Rosy Starling, Barton Field © Stuart Cossey|
|Rosy Starling, Old Light © Stuart Cossey|
Singles of Spotted Flycatcher were recorded on 6th,7th and 9th with two present on the 8th. The Wheatear breeding season has gone well with juveniles seen all along the West and East Coast as well as Ackland’s Moor. A single White Wagtail was recorded at the North End on the 7th and another by the Water Tanks on the 9th and 10th.
A Lesser Redpoll heard calling from the top of Millcombe on the 7th was the best finch of the week. Another brood of juvenile Goldfinch have fledged with a total of six seen in Millcombe on the 8th.
|Lesser Redpoll, Millcombe © Stuart Cossey|
Thursday saw the departure of our volunteer Assistant Warden Laura Pirateque. She has been working hard the last few months monitoring our Puffins and other seabirds, as well as any other jobs we could find!
A ridiculously high count of 130 Painted Lady were recorded on the 6th with numbers dropping back to four and eight over the next two days. Also recorded on the 6th were five Hummingbird Hawk-moth and three Silver-Y. The moth trap the next morning was the best of the year so far with 31 species including Cinnabar, Brussels Lace, Chinese-character and the rare micro-moth Nothris congressariella which is only found on Lundy, Isles of Scilly and parts of Cornwall on its food plant, Balm-leaved Figwort.
|Nothris congressariella © Stuart Cossey|
|Neoturris sp., Landing Bay © Stuart Cossey|
Contributors: S Cossey, R Ellis, Z Wait, L Pirateque, J Dunning, R Taylor, R Taylor, C Baillie, S Waterfield