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Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly 19-24 October 2009

Rose-coloured Starling and Starling, St Agnes, B Evans.

Rose-coloured Starling, St Agnes, Bob Evans

Click on the link for the 2009 gallery images.

Yellow-browed Warbler, Nanquidno Valley, Cornwall, 19/10/09  MJM

Yellow Browed Warbler Cornwall Lumix 19-24 October 2009 MJMcGill

Red-breasted Flycatcher, Mount Todden, St Mary’s 19/10/09 MJM

Red-breated Flycatcher, Mount Todden, Scilly Coolpix 19-24 October 2009 MJMcGill

Bar-tailed Godwit and Oystercatcher, Porthloo Beach, St Mary’s, 20/10/09 MJM

Bar-tailed Godwit and Oystercatcher, Porthloo, Scilly Cornwall Coolpix 19-24 October 2009 MJMcGill

Sanderling, Porthloo Beach, St Mary’s 20/10/09 MJM

Sanderling, Porthloo Beach, Scilly Cornwall Coolpix October 2009 MJMcGill

Common Rosefinch, Carn Gwarvel, St Mary’s, 20/10/09 MJM

Common Rosefinch, Carn Gwarvel, Scilly, Coolpix 19-24 October 2009 MJMcGill 005

Richard’s Pipit, Porthloo Lane, St Mary’s, 22/10/09

Richard's Pipit, Scilly Coolpix 19-24 October 2009 MJMcGill Richard's Pipit, Porthloo Lane, Scilly, Ocotber 2009 MJMcGill

Summary The group consisted of ten of which only one was new to an Anser residential trip. Martin Neil and Jeremy were on hand to ensure the birding flowed. We set of from Gloucestershire on 19th, stayed in St Just that night and flew to St Mary’sto spend four nights on the main island. We visted St Agnes twice and Tresco once during our stay on the islands.

 Sites visited in order 19th- The Hayle Estuary- Copperhouse Creek at the Library, Ryan’s Field, The Causeway and Copperhouse Creek south end. Heslton Loe Pool and Loe Bar, Men an Tol.
20th- Cape Cornwall, Nanquidno Valley, Sennen Cove, Penzance Heliport, St Mary’s.
21st- St Mary’s
22nd- St Mary’s and St Agnes
23rd- St Mary’s and Tresco
24th St Mary’s and St Agnes back to Penzance.

 The birds (those in bold were favourites or scarcer birds)

1. Mute Swan- seen on the Hayle Est.
2. Whooper Swan- six adults on the Big Pool St Agnes on 22 and 24th.
3. Greylag Goose- seen on the Hayle Est.
4. Canada Goose- seen on the Hayle Est.
5. Shelduck- five on the Hayle Est on 19th and 2 on Tresco 23rd.
6. Wigeon- 100’s on the Hayle and c10 on Tresco.
    American Wigeon- a possible female on the Hayle on 19th.
7. Gadwall- c60 on Tresco.
8. Teal- 200 on the Hayle Est and 40 on Tresco.
9. Mallard-noted.
10. Pintail- 2 on Tresco.
11. Pochard- 2 on Tresco.
12. Tufted Duck- noted on Tresco.
13. Common Scoter- three females off Samson on 23rd.
14. Red-legged Partridge- seen on Tresco (released birds)
15. Pheasant- as above
16. Red-throated Diver- one past Peniniss Head on 23rd.
17. Little Grebe- seen in Copperhouse Creek
18. Great Crested Grebe- three on the Loe Pool
19. Sooty Shearwater- one seen by Neil off the Loe Bar.
20. GANNET-seen daily and giving brilliant views for all.
21. Cormorant-seen daily
22. Shag-large numbers between the islands.
23. Little Egret- c10 around the Hayle Estuary and c20 between Brhyer and Tresco, singles around St Mary’s.
24. Grey Heron-noted.
25. SPOONBILL- one on the Hayle Est on 19th and three seen in flight and on rocks off Samson on a few dates.
26. HEN HARRIER- what appeared to be a third calendar year male flew low past the car at Men and Tol at dusk on 19th.
27. Sparrowhawk-noted.
28. Buzzard-noted in Cornwall.
29 Kestrel- noted daily
30. Merlin- seen on St Mary’s and St Agnes during the trip.
31. Peregrine-seen from the A30 in Cornwall and on St Mary’s.
32. Water Rail-heard on St Mary’s and one flew past at the Big Pool, St Agnes on 24th.
33/34. Moorhen and 34. Coot both noted.
35. Oystercatcher-noted
36. Ringed Plover- c 15 on the Hayle Est and up to 20 on St Agnes and Mary’s
37. Golden Plover- c150 seen from the A30 in Cornwall and singles were seen on St Mary’s and Agnes.
38. Lapwing-seen on the Hayle Est.
39. Sanderling-one seen on Porthloo Beach.
40. Little Stint-one on Copperhouse Creek.
41. Dunlin-two on the Hayle and a few on St Agnes.
42. JACK SNIPE- one bobbing bird at the Porthellick Pool on 21st.
43. Snipe-seen on many dates around St Mary’s.
44. BAR-TAILED GODWIT-mostly non-breeding birds seen but seen very well, a breeding plumage bird on St Mary’s at Porthloo beach on 21st.
45. Curlew-noted.
46. Redshank-noted.
47. Greenshank- c10 on Tresco.
48. Common Sandpiper- one noted by Bob Evans on the Hayle whilst we ate pasties
49. Turnstone-c50 on St Agnes
50. Great Skua- one off the Loe Bar.
51. Mediterranean Gull- c10 individuals of all ages on the Hayle, an adult in Sennen Cove
52. Black-headed Gull- noted
53. Ring-billed Gull- a second winter flew over us at the Loe Bar but was only seen well by MJM.
54. Common Gull- seen at the Loe Bar.
55/56. LBB and 56. GBB Gulls
57. Herring Gull-noted
58. Kittiwake- one juvenile past the Loe Bar and three on the sea off Samson on 23rd. Small parties seen distantly from St Mary’s.
59. Skylark-noted
60. Swallow-2 over St Just on 20th and seen daily on Scilly
61. House Martin-one on St Agnes on 22nd
62. RICHARD’S PIPIT- a very showy bird on St Mary’s on 21st.
63. Meadow Pipit-seen daily
64. Rock Pipit-seen daily.
65. Grey Wagtail-seen and heard daily in Cornwall and Scilly.
66. Pied Wagtail-seen daily.
White Wagtail-seen on Porthmellon beach
67/68/69. Wren- a white winged bird at Porthloo Lane 68. Dunnock  69. Robin
70. Black Redstart- seen daily on Scilly, up to 15 seen on 21st and 22nd with a stunning male on St Agnes on the latter date.
71. Stonechat-seen daily.
72. Wheatear- two reported Snow Buntings appeared to be this species at Sennen Cove, a maximum of five seen on 21st on St Mary’s.
73. RING OUZEL- a male at Nanquidno on 20th
74. Blackbird- seen daily
75. Fieldfare-two on Gugh on 22nd
76. Redwing- a few noted on Mary’s from 23rd. One on St Agnes on 22nd.
77. SONG THRUSH- delightfully tame and common as ever.
78. Marsh Warbler (apparent)- one showed a few times near the Big Pool on St Agnes on 24th
79. Reed Warbler- one in bracken on St Agnes on 24th.
80. Blackcap- seen daily with up to six.
81. YELLOW-BROWED WARBLER- a very vocal and showy bird in the Nanquidno Valley on 20th.
82. Chiffchaff-noted daily.
83. Goldcrest-two on Tresco on 23rd, notable by their absence
84. FIRECREST- five seen on St Mary’s on 21st (two Porthellick, two Higher Moors and one Rosehill end of Porthloo Lane) and one on Tresco near the Abbey on 23rd
85. Spotted Flycatcher- a late bird on St Mary’s on 21st was with the Firecrest.
86. RED-BREASTED FLYCATCHER-one at Mount Todden Battery on 20th
87. Long-tailed Tit-seen in Cornwall
88/89. Blue Tit and Great Tit-seen daily.
90. Jay-seen on the journey down
91. Magpie-seen in Cornwall
92.  Chough-three around Cape Cornwall
93. Jackdaw-one on Tresco on 23rd.
94. Rook-seen in Cornwall
95- Carrion Crow-seen daily.
96. Raven- 2 at Cape Cornwall
97. Starling- seen daily
98. Rose-coloured Starling- a juvenile gave us the run around on St Agnes on 22 and 24th but was mostly seen dashing past in flight
99. House Sparrow- seen in very good numbers on the islands.
100. Chaffinch-c200 on Tresco
101. BRAMBLING- a male and female on Tresco
102/103. Greenfinch/ Goldfinch
104. Siskin- four over Longstones on 21st.
105. Linnet-seen in small numbers.
106. Lesser Redpoll- one on Tresco.
107. COMMON ROSEFINCH-a juvenile at Carn Gwarvel on 21st
108. Reed Bunting-a few seen and heard on St Mary’s and St Agnes

Filed under: Trip Reports


at 1:50 pm

1-31 October 2009, Martin’s blog and sightings..

Some images of the Forest of Dean from 27 October 2009. Most views either from Speech House or New Fancy View.
A great autumn for colours this year.

Forest of Dean 26 October 2009 MJMcGill 002

Forest of Dean, New Fancy View, 27 October MJMcGill 046

Forest of Dean 27 October 2009 MJMcGill 011

25-31 October 2009 No birding at all after doing nothing but for all of last week.

19-24 October 2009 A trip to Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly. A trip report online soon…

Yellow-browed Warbler, Nanquidno Valley, Cornwall MJM

Yellow Browed Warbler Cornwall Lumix 20 October 2009 MJMcGill


18 October 2009 A slow start to the day but improved later with the highlights at WWT being two showy Jack Snipe on the Tack Piece, one in front of the Robbie Garnett Hide and theother with a Cetti’s and Water Rail at the Martin Smith Hide. A Little Stint was among 200 Dunlin on the Top New Piece.

17 October 2009 No birding as such but visible migrtion over the garden all day. A Painted Lady was of note as was Speckled Wood.

16 October 2009 A very misty and drizzly start to the day ended sunny and dry. I went out to Splatt Bridge this morning to see if anything was moving about and bumped in to KC who was looking for the Cattle Egrets. Having recommended just looking from the gate we were quickly rewarded with three of them feeding and flying about, two headed east over the canal. A few other species flew over, c70 Redwing, c4 Snipe, Grey Wagtail and a few Meadow Pipits but shortly speculating on the arrival of a Glossy Ibis we were rewarded by good views of one that flew out of the 100 Acre and dropped down twice into long grass in front of us before heading low N toward Saul Warth.

Glossy Ibis, WWT Slimbridge 100 Acre and Splatt Bridge MJM
following two images

Glossy Ibis 16 October 2009 MJMcGill 010

Glossy Ibis 16 October 2009 MJMcGill 011

15 October 2009 The overnight easterlies and drizzly start to the day brought some new birds in. Now 7 E.Whitefronted Geese (ten by the end of the day) and 2 male Ruddy Shelduck feeding with the geese. 4 Dark-bellied Brent were on the estuary an all these birds viewable from the Holden Tower whilst I did the morning rounds. A Glossy Ibis was seen at Lydney (John Phillips). I also saw the Jack Snipe in the Martin Smith hide pool in the afternoon.

14 October 2009 The five E.White-fronted Geese were still present and nine large, pale continental type Greylag Geese have arrived and reside among the local birds but on the reserve. A few more Redpoll, Reed Bunting, Meadow Pipit, Redwing (100′s), Siskin over WWT today, a Yellowhammer also and a Jack Snipe see images…

Jack Snipe, images x 3 Martin Smith pool, WWT. MJM

Jack Snipe 14 October 2009 MJMcGill 0002

Jack Snipe 14 October 2009 MJMcGill 0003

Jack Snipe 14 October 2009 MJMcGill 0004

We are back down to three Cattle Egrets…MJM

Cattle Egret 13 October 2009 MJMcGill 030

13 October 2009 White-fronted Geese (all adults) arrived on the Dumbles today just 19 hours after we re-mooo-ved the cattle for their arrival. A few Siskin and Redwing were passing over today. An afternoon twitch to London for the  Brown Shrike was worthwhile. We also saw a total of 7 Ring-necked Parakeet and  Red Kite on the M4.

Apparent Brown Shrike, Staines Moor near Heathrow (did it get a lift).

Brown Shrike 13 October 2009 MJMcGill 0001 Brown Shrike 13 October 2009 MJMcGill 0002

12 October 2009 A report of a Glossy Ibis at 1230 from the Zeiss Hide at WWT today but we could not locate it anywhere on the reserve from 1600-1730. Three Cattle Egret remained and 2 Redpoll and a Siskin were seen along with a Coal Tit. Four Stonechat and a Whinchat were on the 100 Acre fences.

11 October 2009
A few migrants at WWT Slimbridge, a Siskin, 24 Redwing (first of the autumn), a Rock Pipit and a count of 5900+ wetland birds of which 1899 were Teal.

10 October 2009 A walk around the Forest of Dean for the afternoon was very pleasant but the colours have not really kicked in in the foliage as yet. Highlights were 4 Crossbill, Siskins, Coal Tits and 2-3 Common Hawkers.

9 October 2009 A Jay over my house.

4-8 October 2009 Very little migration, what I have seen I have placed on the WWT website. WWT has changed our log-in etc to a new website system which has meant no updates at WWT last week, this is now up and running again but will mean that you need to re-save it as a favourite to view. Lots of Hornets about plus Painted Lady. A few new birds about but only singles or arriving winter birds. A Coal Tit was in the 100 Acre, my first reserve record this year.

2-3 October 2009 A couple of days off from birding. A late afternoon visit to Hock Cliff produced a Wheatear.

1 October 2009 At WWT I spent from 1045-1730 mowing various parts of the 100 Acre basically management for the breeding waders and wintering birds. I saw a few things from the cab with the highlights being two late male Common Blue Damselflies, c 10 Snipe, 26 Little Egrets and on leaving the site now four Cattle Egrets among the organic stock. This is the largest gathering of this species in Gloucestershire and looks set to increase further.

A selection of favourite images from late September and 1 October follow…

Harvest Mouse and Ford 5030 MJM

Harvest Mouse and Ford 5030 30 Sep 2009 MJMcGill 075

Common Darter, WWT Bull Ground MJM

Common Darter 1 October 2009 MJMcGill 010

Collared Dove, Whitminster MJM
(a pair reared two broods of two in my garden August-September)

Collared Dove head Late Sep 2009 MJMcGill 018

Common Blue Damselfly WWT 100 Acre MJM

Common Blue Damslelfly 1 October 2009 MJMcGill 086

18 Little Egrets WWT 100 Acre MJM

Little Egrets 1 October 2009 MJMcGill 088

Red Admiral, Whitminster MJM

Red Admiral lare Sep 2009 MJMcGill 002

Filed under: Birdwatching Diary


at 6:17 pm