About this page...


This page is run by volunteer contributors as a source of news for everyone interested in the birds of Lundy, in the Bristol Channel, UK.
If you have news to report, please consider signing up as a contributor or send in your sightings here.
See also the companion website The Birds of Lundy for comprehensive updates to the 2007 book of the same name.
Bird recording and ringing on Lundy are coordinated by the Lundy Field Society and general information about visiting the island can be found here.

Sunday, 18 June 2017

15-17 June – News of breeding birds

Highlights for Thursday 15th to Saturday 17th June sent in by Chris & Carol Baillie.

Teal – two well-grown ducklings, so an increasingly good chance for successful fledging.
Water Rail – bird calling from Quarters/Pig's Paradise Pond.
Puffin – 253, most of which were ashore, between Jenny's Cove and North End on 16th, with 14 ahore to the south of Jenny's Cove on 17th.
Oystercatcher – two well-grown young on Rat Island.
Kittiwake – the colour-ringed bird wearing a green ring, inscribed in white 'AV', is again nesting in the colony below the western end of Threequarter Wall and had two downy chicks.
Swift – eight heading south over the island in three groups on 17th.
Chiffchaff – three singing males.
Whitethroat – one singing male (recorded by Dean Jones).

Finally, there is a tantalising recent entry in the LFS logbook for a Woodchat Shrike, but unfortunately there are no supporting details. If you were the lucky observer (or know the person that was), please do get in touch so that this important record for Lundy and Devon doesn't slip through the net.

Saturday, 3 June 2017

2nd June - Red-rumped Swallow resighted

In the evening, a Red-rumped Swallow, possibly the same bird as first seen on Saturday 27th, was observed by Tony Taylor, near the South Light.

Thursday, 1 June 2017

1st June – Rose-coloured Starling

Dean Jones reports the finding, by Tony Taylor, of a summer-plumage Rose-coloured Starling in St Helen's field, right next to Barton Cottages. Dean, who managed to capture the photo below, said the "poor wee thing looked wrecked (he/she kept falling asleep on the wall) but all and all in OK looking health".
Rose-coloured Starling, Barton Cottages/St Helen's Field, 1st June. © Dean Jones

28th to 30th May – long days and nights

Tony Taylor, on Lundy colour-ringing Wheatears by day and ringing Manx Shearwaters by night (and presumably managing to catch some sleep in-between) reports a Reed Warbler and Rook on 28th and 29th, and a Little Egret on 30th (possibly the bird first seen in Landing Bay on 23rd May). The team currently on the island carrying out the count of Manx Shearwater burrows saw a Hobby and seven House Martins at North End on 30th.

On the slopes of the Old Light Manx Shearwater colony, Tony and Richard & Rebecca Taylor have so far caught seven birds ringed as chicks, including one dating back to 2009, and 57 adults. Tony also reports lots of mist!


Saturday, 27 May 2017

27th May – Red-rumped Swallow

A Tweet this evening from Chris Townend, who has just arrived on Lundy to take part in the latest periodic census of Manx Shearwater burrows, brought news of a Red-rumped Swallow:


The bird was also seen above Quarry Beach by Charles Crundwell, who managed to take several long-distance photos of the bird, two of which are included here.


 Red-rumped Swallow, Quarry Beach, 27th May. © Charles Crundwell

In addition, Richard & Rebecca Taylor report lots of Manx Shearwaters and a Storm Petrel on the crossing from Ilfracombe, with a Swift and a singing Collared Dove on the island this afternoon.

20th to 26th May – Two rarities, continued northward migration & news of breeding birds

 Highlights of the past week have included:
  • A Woodchat Shrike along the Lower East Side Path below Tibbetts on Thursday 25th.
  • A Little Egret (Lundy rarity – see record shot below) in the Landing Bay on Tuesday 23rd as MS Oldenburg was leaving.
  • Confirmation of successful breeding by Teal for the third year running.
  • An extremely good night for Manx Shearwaters on 22nd/23rd, with numerous calling birds over Millcombe and St John's Valley and more than 50 handled in the study colony north of Old Light, including three individuals ringed as chicks on Lundy in 2009 and 2013. One of the Manx Shearwater nestboxes checked on 26th contained an incubating bird.
  • Three immature Cormorants thermalling off North East Point before heading for the Welsh coast on 21st.
  • One or two Whimbrels on several dates and a breeding-plumaged Golden Plover on 21st & 22nd.
  • Continuing northward passage of hirundines (especially on 21st), Swifts, Spotted Flycatchers (peaking at 7 on 22nd) and a handful of warblers, among them two Sedge Warblers and several Chiffchaffs, the latter including two mist-netted birds with prominent pollen 'horns' suggesting that they were recently arrived from habitats well to the south of the UK.
  • A Hobby over South West Field and along the West Side on 21st.
  • An influx of seven Collared Doves on 22nd.
  • Further sightings of colour-ringed Wheatears, bringing to 30 the total number of birds ringed in previous years and re-sighted during 2017.
  • Evidence of at least one territorial Water Rail, with persistent calling at night.
  • House Martins visiting crevices on the eastern side of Old House; landing but no sign of nest building as yet.
  • A pair of nest-building Chiffchaffs and potentially territorial Blackcap, Whitethroat and Willow Warbler (though no females of these species were recorded).
  • 40+ singing Wrens holding territory around the island, including at the North Light and along the West Side.
  • Evidence of a particularly good breeding season for the island's Blackbirds (at least 12 pairs) and Robins (up to 8 pairs).
  • Dunnocks feeding young in Millcombe.
  • Two to three breeding pairs of Pied Wagtail, perhaps four or more pairs of Goldfinch, three Chaffinch territories and Linnets gathering nest material.
Compiled from observations by Ryan Burrell, André & Marie Jo Coutanche, Tim Davis, Chris Dee, Paul & Sue James, Dean Jones, Mike Jones, Tim Jones, Seb Loram, Alan & Sandra Rowland, Ann & Tony Taylor.

 Little Egret, Landing Bay, 23rd May. © Alan Rowland

Friday, 19 May 2017

Photos from the first week of May

Below are some great photos from Joanne Wilby, taken during the week of 29 April to 6 May, when Joanne and husband Andrew were part of a working party that stripped fixtures, fittings and untold years worth of accumulated miscellaneous 'items-that-somebody-must-have-thought-might-come-in-useful-one-day' from the Church, prior to the commencement of restoration and renovation works. The birds must have provided light relief! [Click on images for a closer view.]

Dunlins on main track near Halfway Wall, 6th May © Joanne Wilby
Male Whinchat on Tent Field wall below Old Light, 5th May © Joanne Wilby
Female Yellow & Blue-headed Wagtails, Barton Field, 5th May © Joanne Wilby
Male colour-ringed Wheatear near Jenny's Cove, 5th May © Joanne Wilby
Male Pied Wagtail, Barton Field, 5th May © Joanne Wilby
And finally...

A portrait from another working party stalwart, Alan Rowland, of roosting Dunlins at Kistvaen Pond/Rocket Pole Marsh:

Dunlins at Kistvaen Pond, 6th May © Alan Rowland