Monday 11th May
Comments: Despite the wind switching to the east (bringing a cooler airflow), the sunny weather ensured it was a very pleasant day with flat seas. It was another good day with more interesting sightings including the islands first Spotted Redshank in three years. The breeding season continues to move along with pace as more birds settle on the islands as birds move onto the islands on a daily basis. Even the satellite islands are seeing increases as three nesting Eiders were found on Longstone – an island without even any vegetation whilst up to 15 Cormorants are nesting on the Big Harcar (away from the normal two nesting colonies). However as the wind has swicthed direction, the birders on the islands are starting to get excited with the promise of potential interesting migrants...watch this space...
Weather: E 1-2 with bright sunny spells
Highlights: Red-throated Diver 1N, Manx Shearwater 11N, Tufted Duck 2 north (pair), Velvet Scoter 2 north (pair - very unseasonal), Spotted Redshank 1 adult on Brownsman, then west over Inner Farne before returning to Brownsman pond from 16:00-21:00 – finally flew west towards the mainland (first record since 2006), Swallow light northerly passage, Lesser Whitethroat 2, Chiffchaff 3 and Whitethroat 1.
Breeding birds: Fulmar pairs return having been away for five days (on honeymoon!), Ringed Plover chicks still growing strong on Inner Farne – both broods doing well, Oystercatcher eggs found on Staple, Shelduck two pairs present on the islands, Kittiwakes continue to nest build, Arctic Terns continue to increase in numbers and Sandwich Terns are now numbering 500+ pairs nesting on Inner Farne (we'll have 1,500+ eventually).