Wednesday 17 September 2014

Gold Rush

Farnes third ever Golden Oriole (David Steel)

Showing well on Brownsman (David Roche)

Previous records in 1992 and 1976! (David Steel)

Little Bunting caught and ringed (David Steel)

One of two Common Rosefinch (David Steel)

Juv Curlew Sandpiper (David Steel)

Wednesday 17th September comments: Madness, utter madness. The Farne Islands are an amazing place for seabirds and wildlife, but its also a well known sport for migrant birds. On a good day it can challenge with the best and today was one of those days…

As dawn was breaking, news that our the long staying Rustic and Little Bunting were still present and the Red-backed Shrike which arrived yesterday (and bit fingers) was still around. However that was just the start of things to come. More migrant birds were being discovered by the hour and just after 10:30 the big news broke…

GOLDEN ORIOLE…Brownsman. Mega. These stunning birds are very rare breeders in the UK and are rarely seen on passage. The Farnes have boasted just two previous individuals in 1992 and 1976. Until today.

There is was, an immature on Brownsman, showing well and soon the entire Farnes team were enjoying this golden wonder. However more excitement followed as not one, but two Common Rosefinches were discovered. Throw in our first Yellow-browed Warbler of the autumn and Farne scarcities like Curlew Sandpiper and Sanderling, you can see what kind of day it turned out to be. Our day was even topped off with some bird ringing of various migrant birds including the Common Rosefinch and Little Bunting.

And breath.

Darkness fell at end of the day which had produced; Rustic Bunting, Little Bunting, Golden Oriole, Red-backed Shrike,  Yellow-browed Warbler, two Common Rosefinch and a Curlew Sandpiper. Tomorrow anyone? Bring it on.

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