As the wardens have now left Skomer Island for the winter, this is the last report we will publish until March next year when the wardens will return to the island. Below is the bird migration highlights on Skomer for November from Skomer's warden, Ed Stubbings;
The highlights from November included a flock of five Great Northern Divers on the 26th, six Greenland White-fronted Geese on the 4th, up to three Hen Harriers present all month, two Siberian Chiffchaffs, a Pallas’s Warbler (the second of the autumn), a Snow Bunting (7th) and nine Lapland Bunting records.
Other significant records and counts (mostly given as maxima) include: five Wigeon (3rd and 16th), 40 Teal (13th), 36 Mallard (24th) with mating observed on two occasions, six Shoveler (1st), a Tufted Duck (9th) and flocks of 18 and 15 Common Scoter (5th and 23rd respectively).
A Red Kite roamed the island on the 24th. There were almost daily Hen Harrier sightings with three on the 19th. There were four Merlin sightings but none after the 13th.
Waders included, 22 Oystercatcher (15th and 17th), two Lapwing (3rd), a Purple Sandpiper (10th), ten Snipe (23rd), three Woodcock (11th), 41 Curlew (24th) and 22 Turnstone (9th).
Five Mediterranean Gulls were recorded on the 13th and 18th. 290 Black-headed Gulls were recorded on the 13th. Common Gulls were recorded on several dates with six on the 28th and there were at least 100 Kittiwakes on the same date.
Big flocks of Wood Pigeons passed over the island on the 13th (360) and 23rd (725). Nine Short-eared Owls emerged from their day time roost at dusk on the 26th.
Numbers of migrant Skylarks peaked at 105 on the 13th. Black Redstarts were recorded on the 1st and 3rd. Numbers of thrushes peaked at 28 Blackbirds (25th), eight Fieldfare (23rd), 24 Song Thrush (19th), 60 redwing (23rd) and single Mistle Thrushes on four dates.
Blackcaps were recorded on four dates with two on the 8th. Chiffchaffs were recorded on seven dates (Siberian Chiffchaffs were recorded on the 8th and 25th-26th). A Pallas’s Warbler was present in South Stream on the afternoon of the 13th. Goldcrests were seen on most days with five on the eighth.
Up to two Blue Tits were present for most of the month. Starlings were seen migrating on several dates with the highest number being 1,200 on the 1st.
The peak counts of finches were 90 Chaffinch (23rd), six Goldfinch (23rd), single Siskins on three dates, 67 Linnet (26th) and one Lesser Redpoll (11th).
Lapland Buntings were recorded on six dates with three on the 7th when a Snow Bunting also flew over.
See you all next year for 2017's monthly migration reports for Skomer Island!