Skomer’s Migrant Bird Sightings from April

Little Egret by Clive Nichols

Little Egret by Clive Nichols

Puffin by Tom Marshall

Puffin by Tom Marshall

A Little Egret flew past North Haven on the morning of the 17th. There was a single day of Common Scoter passage with 447 recorded.

There were two Red Kites on the 22nd and a single bird around the centre of the island on the 26th. A ringtail Hen Harrier was present until the 23rd. An Osprey flew over during the evening on the 18th. At least one female Kestrel was present throughout as was a female Merlin (with two suspected on the 11th and 12th). A Hobby was recorded on the 22nd.

At least one Ringed Plover was recorded amongst a mixed flock of waders that flew over on the 10th and three passed over on the 22nd. A single Lapwing was seen on the 19th and 20th. Dunlin were also present in the mixed flock of waders on the 10th plus birds were seen on the 12th, 18th (two) and 22nd. Between one and four Snipe were recorded on many dates and there were six on the 2nd. A breeding plumage Bar-tailed Godwit dropped in amongst the breeding Oystercatchers on the 23rd. Whimbrel were first recorded on the 17th and the maximum day total was 31 on the 21st. Single Common Sandpipers were recorded on the 16th and 18th and there were two on the 19th. The peak count of Turnstone was 15 on the 8th.

Whole island Puffin counts were conducted on the 14th and 19th with the peak count being 25,227 individuals on the 14th. Stock Doves were recorded on the 9th and 13th and Collared Doves were recorded on the 13th and 14th. A Cuckoo was singing on the 18th and there was a further bird on the 25th.

The Short-eared Owls were busy during April, with displaying noted on the 21st and 22nd.

Peak hirundine counts include: 254 Sand Martin on the 9th, 290 Swallow on the 16th and 35 House Martin on the 23rd. A Tree Pipit flew over on the 20th and there were single White Wagtails on six dates. There was a Black Redstart on the 8th and three the next day (two females and a male). Possibly one of the females from the 8th then stayed around at the Farm until the 20th. Single Common Redstarts were recorded on the 15th and 20th and there were two on the 19th and 30th. There were also two Whinchats on the 30th. Numbers of Wheatears peaked on the 23rd with 61 (including seven Greenland birds). Two Ring Ouzels were seen on the 7th and there were singles on the 8th and 19th. Unseasonal thrushes were Fieldfares on the 19th and 23rd, Song Thrushes on the 19th (two) and 22nd and Redwing on the 6th (two) and 29th.

It was a good month for Grasshopper Warblers with birds being recorded on nine dates and a maximum of four on the 23rd. Sedge Warblers arrived on the 8th with a peak counts of ten on the 28th and 30th. The first and only record of Reed Warbler was of one in South Stream on the 24th. There were Garden Warblers on the 20th and 21st and the 29th and 30th. There were four Goldcrests on the 1st and singles on the 6th, 19th and 23rd. Peak counts of other warblers include: 26 Blackcap on the 19th, twelve Common Whitethroat on the 30th, 16 Chiffchaff on the 2nd and 19th and 140 Willow Warbler on the 19th. A male Eastern Subalpine Warbler was photographed at Moorey Mere on the 20th.

The first Spotted Flycatcher was seen on the 29th and there were Pied Flycatchers on the 10th and 19th.

A Siskin was recorded on the 27th and there were Redpolls on the 9th and 29th.