The following updates came in over the summer from Chris & Carol Baillie and John Duffy. Apologies for late posting.
For 28–30 July Chris & Carol reported:
"Two Razorbills and four Puffins were seen carrying fish, two of the Puffins evidently delivered their payloads to burrows. Seventy-three Puffins were on the water in Jenny’s in the afternoon of the 28th . The highest Guillemot count was 123 on the 29th and 5 was the maximum Razorbill count. As we watched from the Castle on the evening of the 29th 1,500 Manx Shearwater amassed in rafts off the East side, the majority arriving from south of the island. Kittiwakes were fledging, with a number of nests having two young taking short flights.
Away from the cliffs, recently fledged young (presumed to be locally bred) were noted for most of the expected breeding birds, and included Blackcap (a male was alarm-calling whilst food carrying to the immediate vicinity of two juveniles), Dunnock and Goldfinch. At least one House Sparrow nest was reported with eggs. A Song Thrush carried a moth into thick willow growth, but no young birds were noted. A handful of Woodpigeons included at least two juveniles. A dead juvenile Meadow Pipit had no appreciable pectoral muscle. Most of the thirty (or so) Wheatear were “scruffy” juveniles in twos and threes in consistent locations over the three days, perhaps representing siblings still on territories now largely abandoned by the adults?
Apart from a single Swift, Willow Warblers were the only obvious migrants with 75 the maximum count. A single Sedge Warbler in Millcombe each day is assumed to have been the same bird, and raises the possibility that it was a summering individual.
The crossing to Ilfracombe was outstanding for Common Dolphins and produced our second Ocean Sunfish for the visit (he other was off North End)."
Also visiting over the same three-day period, John added:
"There was a sizeable fall of Willow Warblers with most being in Millicombe as you would expect. Notable sightings included one Grasshopper Warbler in Millicombe on the 29th and three Sedge Warblers lower down by the overgrown pond on the same day. There was a single Spotted Flycatcher in Millicombe on the Friday and Saturday. A juv Grey Heron flew in high towards the East side of the island on 29th around 5pm but was harassed by gulls and I did not see it land."
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