First Swift flies through

30th April 2016 – sunny spells and wintery showers WNW4/3
Offshore
Early morning observations on the falling tide (0645-0745) produced 33 Kittiwake, 28 Common Scoter, 18 Gannet, 17 Manx Shearwater, 16 Sandwich Tern, 7 Guillemot, 4 Red-breasted Merganser and single Red-throated Diver and Razorbill.
Grounded Migrants
Two Wheatear were the only evidence of newly grounded birds.
Diurnal Migration
Surprisingly, considering the continued cold northerly wind the first Swift of the year flew through.
Wildfowl and Waders
Waders included 750 Dunlin, 260 Golden Plover, 80 Whimbrel and 4 Black-tailed Godwit.
Breeding Birds
Despite of the wind being in the north all week the number of Lesser Whitethroat, Whitethroat and Sedge Warbler in breeding haunts continues to rise slowly.
Ringing
The ringing total for April was dominated by finches with relatively few warblers amongst the total of 280 birds of 17 species handled. Individual species totals were as follows (retraps in brackets): Goldfinch 54 (34), Linnet 37 (31), Goldcrest 18 (3), Willow Warbler 15, Chiffchaff 10, Chaffinch 7 (3), Blackcap 5, Greenfinch 5 (11), Robin 4, Siskin 4, Reed Bunting 3 (18), Blackbird 1 (5), Wren 1 (4), Dunnock 1 (3), Redstart 1, Sparrowhawk 1 and House Sparrow (1).
Butterflies
The first Speckled Wood and Orange Tip are now on the wing.

First Manx Shearwaters appear offshore

26th April 2016 sunny spells and wintery showers NNW3/4/5
Offshore
A check of the sea on the falling tide (1515-1615) produced the first Manx Shearwaters of the year along with 100 Kittiwake, 10 Gannet, 10 Sandwich Tern, 5 Razorbill, 2 Common Scoter and single Red-throated Diver and Guillemot.
Grounded Migrants
The cold northerly wind continues to block migration with only a single Wheatear logged.
Wildfowl and Waders
Waders included 260 Golden Plover, 200 Turnstone and 5 Whimbrel.
Miscellaneous
Another Harbour Porpoise appeared offshore.

First Little Terns arrive

24th April 2016 – overcast/showers NNW1/2/3
Offshore
Observations over the sea (0800-0900) produced the first 3 Little Terns of the year along with 100 Sandwich Tern, 90 Common Scoter, 9 Gannet, 8 Red-throated Diver, 3 Kittiwake and 3 Guillemot.
Grounded Migrants
Very little on offer due to the cold northerly airstream with just 4 Wheatear, 4 Willow Warbler and a White Wagtail logged.
Wildfowl and Waders
Waders included 11 Whimbrel, 6 Black-tailed Godwit and a Greenshank.
Miscellaneous
Two Merlin were the best of the rest.

Warblers arrive at breeding haunts

23rd April 2016 – bright and sunny V2/3
Offshore
A check of the sea revealed small numbers of Red-throated Diver, Gannet, Common Scoter and Sandwich Tern.
Grounded Migrants
A smattering of grounded birds included: 27 Wheatear, 7 Willow Warbler, 3 Blackcap and 2 Chiffchaff..
Diurnal Migration
Small numbers of Swallow, Sand Martin and House Martin continue to trickle through.
Wildfowl and Waders
Good numbers of waders were around the island including 25000 Knot, 1150 Dunlin, 380 Sanderling, 160 Golden Plover, 120 Turnstone, 70 Whimbrel, 4 Black-tailed Godwit and 2 Greenshank.
Breeding Birds
Low numbers of Sedge Warbler, Grasshopper Warbler, Whitethroat, Lesser Whitethroat and Willow Warbler are now ensconced in breeding haunts on the island.

Black Redstart

22nd April 2016 – sunny spells V1/2
Offshore
Small numbers of Sandwich Tern were again offshore.
Grounded Migrants
Highlight of the day was a male Black Redstart. Also seen were 13 Wheatear, 6 Willow Warbler, 3 Blackcap, 2 Chiffchaff and single Lesser Whitethroat and White Wagtail.
Wildfowl and Waders
Just 6 pale-bellied Brent Geese were logged.
Breeding Birds
The first Lapwing chicks have now hatched.
Ringing
Recent controls involve both Greenfinch and Linnet.

First Common Sandpiper arrives

21st April 2016 bright and sunny V2
Offshore
A few Sandwich Tern fed offshore in the evening.
Grounded Migrants
Wheatear numbers begin to build with 44 birds logged, otherwise it was quiet with new arrivals limited to 5 White Wagtail, 2 Blackcap and 2 Willow Warbler.
Wildfowl and Waders
The first Common Sandpiper of the year was logged and 8 Black-tailed Godwit remain.
Miscellaneous
Small numbers of Little Egret remain and additional sightings included Merlin and Peregrine.

Clear skies

19th April 2016 bright and sunny WNW2
Offshore
A few Sandwich Tern were offshore in the evening.
Grounded Migrants
Limited to 10 Wheatear and single Blackcap, Willow Warbler and Chiffchaff.
Moths
Early Grey and Hebrew Character were added to the somewhat paltry year list. Immigrants were represented by another Dark Sword Grass.
Local News
The island was eclipsed by a Marsh Harrier hunting over Mere Tarn and an Osprey fishing Poaka Beck Reservoir in the evening.

Whimbrel begin to build early

17th April 2016 – bright and sunny WNW2/3
Offshore
Early morning observations (0715-0815) produced 300 Common Scoter, 38 Sandwich Tern, 25 Gannet, 14 Kittiwake, 7 Red-throated Diver, 5 Red-breasted Merganser and 3 Razorbill.
Grounded Migrants
The clear skies did not induce many birds to make landfall with just 7 Wheatear, 3 Willow Warbler, 2 Chiffchaff and a Blackcap logged.
Diurnal Migration
The Swallow trickle continues.
Wildfowl and Waders
Waders included 11 Whimbrel and 6 Black-tailed Godwit.
Butterflies
The first Small White was on the wing.

When the north wind blows!!

16th April 2016 – overcast/sunny later N2/3/4
Offshore
Small numbers of Red-throated Diver, Common Scoter and Sandwich Tern were offshore early morning.
Grounded Migrants
The cold north wind subdued migration with just 4 Chiffchaff and 4 Wheatear logged.
Diurnal Migration
A further trickle of Swallow, Sand Martin and Siskin was evident.
Wildfowl and Waders
The 5 Black-tailed Godwit remain.
Mammals
Three Harbour Porpoise were offshore.