Lundy Chicken Observatory: Lundy Chicken Observatory Replace Twenty seventh Oct


Pretty windy and lots of rainfall all through this era with only a few birds round or shifting on some days. A little bit of respite on thirtieth noticed a bit extra passage earlier than a collection of storms blew in from the Atlantic, with named Storm Ciaran arriving within the night of the first November.

After one earlier document on sixteenth November 1956, simply the second Lundy document of Surf Scoter was discovered off of the east coast on the Twenty seventh. The feminine kind chicken was initially picked past Rat Island however obligingly moved nearer into the Touchdown Bay permitting higher remark and affirmation of the ID. Sadly, a Nice Northern Diver resurfaced beside the scoter and spooked it. The Surf Scoter flew straight again out to sea and was not seen once more. An grownup feminine Shelduck was current on census on the flooded floor beside the water tanks on the third. Three Teal had been seen over the ocean from the east coast on the first and later sitting within the calm waters of the Touchdown Bay. By the 2nd that they had joined our single chicken up at Pondsbury, and on the third one other two birds had joined the flock making a complete of six. 

File shot of feminine kind Surf Scoter in Touchdown Bay © Andy Jayne

Grownup feminine Shelduck close to to the Water Tanks © Angus Croudace

A test of Brazen Ward on the twenty eighth discovered a flock of 32 Oystercatcher which is the best rely since spring. A single Golden Plover overflew the airfield on thirtieth and was calling excessive over Millcombe on the Thirty first, and heard once more over the water tanks on the third.

Nocturnal survey effort continues, made considerably simpler by the altering clocks. One other three Woodcock had been ringed on the thirtieth with two different birds seen and one other single flushed in daylight on the Decrease East Coast Path. Sadly one carcass was present in SW subject on the third; seemingly a Peregrine Falcon kill. Three Jack Snipe had been discovered on the thirtieth with one ringed, and one other was discovered close to Quarter Wall in daytime on the Thirty first. The island is holding a considerable amount of floor water in the intervening time with loads of wonderful areas for snipe to roost or feed, so that they’re turning up far and wide, not simply in a number of key areas that had been usually frequented earlier within the autumn. Barton Discipline has contained a Jack Snipe on each survey since mid October, however now we’re encountering them in locations such because the airfield too. Excessive counts of six Frequent Snipe had been recorded on the thirtieth and the 2nd with two separate observations of a chicken being pursued by a Peregrine Falcon on the twenty ninth and thirtieth. 

The storms have seen seabirds gathering to feed in climate home windows within the lee of the island in the direction of the tip of this era, with 500 Kittiwake on the Thirty first and over 1500 on the first November. Over 100 Gannet and 80 auks amongst them. Our lengthy staying winter plumage Nice Northern Diver was joined by one other which retained a lot of its wonderful summer time plumage on the twenty eighth. A 3rd chicken was additionally seen with them on the thirtieth. A minimum of one has been seen every day since. A single Cormorant flew over the island on the twenty eighth, Thirty first and 1st. A Gray Heron remains to be picked up often and as much as three Water Rail can nonetheless be heard calling in Millcombe Valley.

Summer season Plumage Nice Northern Diver within the Touchdown Bay © Angus Croudace

We loved wonderful island protection in a lot of October, however with most visiting birders away, in addition to our Chicken Obs Warden Joe, the north of the island has contributed far fewer information to the log e book. Raptor information are considerably down after incredible numbers final week. That is seemingly partially as a consequence of decreased protection but in addition a results of some raptors having moved on now that the majority of the migrant passerines and waders that they had been feeding on have handed by. Each a female and male Sparrowhawk are nonetheless seen often, only one male Kestrel recorded on this interval and as much as 4 Peregrine Falcon. A minimum of three Merlin had been nonetheless current on the twenty eighth, however hereafter none had been recorded till a single chicken from Tibbet’s on the third. After a interval of no sightings for the reason that twenty fifth, a Quick-eared Owl was once more seen in Lighthouse Discipline on the Thirty first and watch flying on Fort Hill by two guests on the first. Notably a late Osprey flew south into robust winds a good distance off of the east coast on the first November. That is our fourth document of the autumn and the newest for Lundy by 5 days, with one beforehand on Twenty seventh October 2001, at a time when the species was no-where close to as nicely established as it’s at this time. It is incredible to see them thriving within the UK once more, and our information this 12 months maybe mirror this restoration, with beforehand just one, often two birds recorded on passage within the autumn.

As much as seven Chiffchaff are recorded every day, though usually simply three in Millcombe and a pair alongside the east coast. The lengthy staying Yellow-browed Warbler confirmed very properly at Quarter Wall on the Twenty seventh however has not been seen since. A bit of extra motion on the thirtieth with 18 Blackcap new in after a few clean days within the log e book. Equally for Goldcrest with 9 on the thirtieth and 12 on the Thirty first. A really showy Firecrest was simply seen and heard from the seashore highway at Windy Nook on the twenty ninth and thirtieth, earlier than two had been then trapped and ringed on the Thirty first

Firecrest, Seaside Highway © Angus Croudace

One other inflow of at the very least 100 Starling joined our longer staying birds on the thirtieth, however had moved on once more by the following day. A Ring Ouzel has been recorded on a regular basis aside from the Twenty seventh, with two males dropping in under the Timekeeper’s Hut on the thirtieth amongst a small flock of Fieldfare. Fieldfare remained in single figures till the thirtieth when 70 had been recorded in a few bigger flocks. Round 20-30 have caught round since, with some birds frequenting the Water Tanks and one other flock across the prime of Millcombe. We had the second highest rely of Redwing for the autumn on the thirtieth at 110 (after 700 on their massive arrival day on the twelfth October). Half of those birds erupted out of the beer backyard shrubbery and left the island shortly after dawn. After a few clean days in the beginning of this era, we’re recording between 5 to 10 Music Thrush every day for the reason that thirtieth A flock of ten Blackbird was seen alongside Excessive Avenue on the 2nd. A Mistle Thrush was rattling concerning the village on the thirtieth and Thirty first. A single Woodpigeon has been seen in Millcombe on the Thirty first and third, the primary document for the reason that twenty third. 

Excitingly, an grownup male Waxwing was picked up on census on the twenty eighth and remains to be current, favouring the decrease gardens in Millcombe, though it was additionally photographed by the Timekeeper’s Hut above the Terrace. It evaded the mist nets at our first strive, however one other go on the Thirty first in calmer climate was profitable, making this chicken the primary Waxwing ever to be ringed on Lundy! It’s simply the sixth document of this species for Lundy. They’re an annual customer to the UK in winter, however some years an ‘irruption’ sees an enormous inflow when meals is scarce or the climate is unusually harsh of their most popular wintering grounds. It is trying like a Waxwing winter this 12 months, with big numbers already seen throughout the east coast of the UK, with a number of odd information of smaller numbers or people making it as far west as Lundy or Eire. 

Waxwing among the many restricted choice of berries presently on provide in Millcombe © Joe Parker

Waxwing in Sycamores above the Battlements © Angus Croudace

Waxwing within the hand © Luke Marriner

A few late Swallow with six on the Thirty first, a few of which roosted in a single day with three picked up once more on the first. A single chicken was recorded struggling within the gale pressure winds over the Airfield on the 2nd, and we had been happy to see that it had survived by into the third, flying across the village. The largest motion of Skylark was a flock of 9 on the thirtieth with a few singles in any other case. A giant distinction to Skokholm a bit additional north who reported a number of hundred shifting by on the Thirty first! A Woodlark was discovered sheltering from the 60mph gusts within the heather round Rocket Pole within the morning of the 2nd.

Stonechat numbers have been notably low this week, usually within the low single figures. A late Northern Wheatear was in Brick Discipline on the thirtieth. Three days on this interval have recorded no wagtails of any species, in any other case only a few single Alba/Pied Wagtails recorded with one Gray Wagtail on the Twenty seventh.

Chaffinch numbers have been round 225 all through Twenty seventh-Thirty first aside from the twenty ninth with 401. This was additionally seemingly an undercount as birds had been shifting in modest numbers however we lacked the protection to watch the complete extent. Close by, at Bull Level in extra of 5000 had been recorded on the identical morning, though we suspect that some showers out to sea to the north of Lundy meant that the birds moved up the Bristol Channel earlier than making the crossing, therefore decrease numbers over us regardless of beneficial winds. Passage had stopped by the first, with only a rating or so discovered feeding on the tracks or in Millcombe. Simply 4 information of Brambling this week, together with a feminine ringed in Millcombe. We famous about 80 Siskin every day till Storm Ciaran after which simply single figures had been to be discovered. A small flock of 8 Linnet has been feeding in St Johns Valley this week, with a few singles picked up elsewhere. Two Lesser Redpoll on the Twenty seventh are presently the final document within the log e book, and on the identical day three Snow Bunting had been seen on the wall round Tibbet’s, though sadly haven’t been resighted.

Male Brambling in Sycamores above Millcombe Pines © Angus Croudace
Feminine Brambling ringed in Millcombe © Luke Marriner

And at last for this week, a wee video from Storm Ciaran, taken in a really windy SW subject.


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