Wednesday, 3 July 2013

Here Comes the Bride

A star arrive...the 24th Bridled Tern for the UK (David Kinchin-smith)

First for the Farne Islands (David Kinchin-smith)

Local Arctic terns look on (Bex Outram)

The birders arrive...

With some very happy customers!

Like father, like son, Ranger Ciaran and his father visiting

The 'rares' map on Birdguides - a real big rare in Northumberland...

Wednesday 3rd July comments: WHAT an extraordinary few days for the Farnes. The islands are world renowned for their breeding seabirds, but the limelight fell elsewhere on Monday 1st July. Mid-afternoon an adult BRIDLED TERN landed in the roost near the jetties of Inner Farne and has continued to show well on and off ever since. The bird breeds as close as the Caribbean and south-east Asia and is a very rare vagrant to western Europe.

In a rarity context, this is the first Bridled Tern in the UK since 2010 but that bird was only seen by two people for twenty minutes. You have to go back to 1991 since the last accessible Bridled Tern in the UK and this is the first ever sighting for the Farne Islands. Interestingly this represents the 24th record in the UK and its being very much appreciated. As a result, the response has been outstanding…

Birders have been travelling in their droves from all four corners of the UK (its second day brought people from Surrey, Sussex and beyond) whilst today we’ve had enquires from Cornwall. It has that pulling power. As a result we have arranged special access to see the bird (ensuring no disturbance to our nesting seabirds), including boats at 6am in the morning.

The bird has performed well at times, but can go missing for several hours when it is presumably off out fishing. Over 219 visiting birders made the trip on Tuesday and a lot more will follow if the bird remains. It’s a great spell for the islands and with our seabirds doing well, we are not complaining. Planet Farnes, you can’t beat it.

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