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 18.08.2017   .Mick Dryden 

A showery day with a strong westerly wind and fairly devoid of birds!

At the Scrape this morning were a Common Sandpiper, a Snipe, a Peregrine chasing one of our only two Lapwings and a Willow Warbler. Another Snipe was at the Wetland Centre.

There was little of note passing Grosnez this morning despite the seemingly suitable conditions, mainly Gannets and Fulmars with the tedium broken by the passage of another Ocean Sunfish.

There was virtually no passage at Noirmont with just 2 Swifts, 3 Sand Martins and 14 Swallows seen. Raptors there included 2 Buzzards, a Marsh Harrier, a Sparrowhawk, a Peregrine and 2 Kestrels.

A Kingfisher was again at Queen's Valley.

Picture: A Fulmar on the north coast.

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 17.08.2017   .Mick Dryden 

A poor morning of overcast conditions with hill fog and rain, giving way to a fair afternoon and a fresh westerly wind.

Little of note passed Grosnez in this morning's murky conditions, just 5 Manx Shearwaters and 40 Gannets seen in an hour. 13 Bottle-nosed Dolphins in two groups moved west at around 7 am.

On the St Ouen's Pond Scrape were 2 Common Sandpipers, a Green Sandpiper, a Snipe, 2 Lapwings and a female Teal. 8 Sand Martins were feeding at the South Canal and another Common Sandpiper was in the Sandpits. Seen from the Wetland Centre were 3 Snipe, a Dunlin, a Pochard, 4 Sedge Warblers and 2 Reed Warblers. A further 3 Sedge Warblers, 2 Reed Warblers and a Water Rail were at the North Canal.

Noirmont fared little better with no visible migration seen this morning. On the ground were 4 Stonechats, a Wheatear, 3 Whitethroats, 2 Blackcaps and at least 7 Dartford Warblers. 2 local Buzzards were being harassed there by 3 Ravens and a Peregrine was hunting in the area.

Evening update: At Le Pulec today were a Common Sandpiper, a juvenile Mediterranean Gull, 21 Little Egrets and a Wheatear. At Seymour and La Rocque were 120 Sandwich Terns, 11 Grey Herons, 42 Little Egrets, 28 Dunlin, 34 Ringed Plovers and 2 Swifts. A mixed flock of 60 Swallows and House Martins was feeding at Goose Green this afternoon.

Picture: A recent view of a juvenile Mediterranean Gull at Le Pulec.

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 16.08.2017   .Mick Dryden 

It was that rare occurrence of a pleasant summer's day today with a light southerly wind.

Today's visible migrants at Noirmont included 32 Swifts, 22 Tree Pipits, 183 Swallows, 12 House Martins, 3 Sand Martins, a Mediterranean Gull and 31 Black-headed Gulls. On the ground were a juvenile Spotted Flycatcher, 10+ Whitethroats, 5 Willow Warblers, a Blackcap, 5 Wheatears, 4 Stonechats and at least 7 Dartford Warblers. The usual raptors were in the area and 13 Bottle-nosed Dolphins passed westbound at 8 am.

At Gorselands were 2 Wheatears and an excellent 31 House Sparrows.

A Dunlin and 2 Sedge Warblers were at the St Ouen's Pond Scrape and a Common Sandpiper was at the Wetland Centre. Around the North Canal were a Kingfisher, a Snipe, 5 Sedge Warblers, 3 Reed Warblers and a Willow Warbler.

Out East, 69 Little Egrets were spread between Le Hocq and Le Hurel, a Green Sandpiper and a juvenile Sparrowhawk were at La Rocque. Yesterday, 6 Grey Plovers were at La Rocque..

Yesterday evening at Kempt Tower in St Ouen's Bay were 2 Willow Warblers, 3 Reed Warblers, 2 Grey Herons, a Snipe, a Sparrowhawk, 5 Sand Martins and a roost of 700 Swallows. At Grouville Marsh were a Kingfisher and a Willow Warbler.

Picture: A Common Whitethroat on the bunker at Noirmont.

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 15.08.2017   .Mick Dryden 

The wind was firmly back in the north-west today with a consequent reduction in the amount of visible migration taking place.

New at St Ouen's Pond Scrape this afternoon was a Cattle Egret. Also seen there and on St Ouen's Pond today were 4 Green Sandpipers, a Common Sandpiper, a Dunlin, 2 Snipe, and 3 Pochard.

Visible migration that did happen at Noirmont included 10 Swifts, 264 Swallows, 11 House Martins, 5 Sand Martins, 2 Little Egrets, 2 Grey Herons, 63 Black-headed Gulls and a Mediterranean Gull. Offshore, 118 Gannets and 23 Sandwich Terns passed. On the ground at Noirmont were 2 Wheatears, 3 Stonechats, 8 Whitethroats and 2 Willow Warblers. Raptors seen included 3 Sparrowhawks, 3 Kestrels, a Peregrine, a juvenile Marsh Harrier which has taken up temporary residence there, and at least 5 Buzzards.

2 Ravens were at Ouaisne.

Picture: The Wheatear season is now upon us. This one was at Noirmont yesterday and was still there today.

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 14.08.2017   .Mick Dryden 

A temporary relief from the incessant westerlies of recent saw a light south-easterly wind, warm air and a decent amount of visible migration on offer.

Passing Noirmont this morning were 235 Swifts, 720 Swallows, 51 House Martins, 46 Sand Martins, 4 Tree Pipits, 2 White Wagtails, 5 Meadow Pipits, a Grey Heron, a Little Egret, a Ringed Plover and a Common Sandpiper. On the ground were 2 Wheatears, a Whinchat, 10+ Common Whitethroats, 7 Willow Warblers and 4 Stonechats, one minus it's tail. Local raptors included 8 Buzzards, a juvenile Marsh Harrier, 2 Sparrowhawks, an immature Peregrine and 2 Kestrels.

At St Ouen's Pond this morning were 4 Grey Herons, 2 Little Egrets, 4 Teal, 4 Green Sandpipers, a Common Sandpiper, 7 Snipe, a Dunlin, 4 Wheatears, a Great Spotted Woodpecker, 20 Sedge Warblers, 3 Willow Warblers and a flock of 50 Goldfinches. Seen there yesterday was a Black-tailed Godwit and in the Sandpits, 6 Little Grebes.

Picture: One of today's good movement of Swifts passes over the bunker at Noirmont.


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 13.08.2017   .Mick Dryden 

A much more pleasant day today with clearing skies and a light westerly wind.

There were some more hints of Autumn migration getting underway at Noirmont this morning. An adult Honey Buzzard which flew out from trees there may well have been the unidentified raptor seen there three days earlier. Today's unidentified raptor was a dashing falcon which put all the Swallows up and probably a Hobby. 4 Tree Pipits were the first of the Autumn with 2 White Wagtails, 14 Swifts, 116 Swallows, 7 Sand Martins, 4 House Martins, 4 Meadow Pipits, a Dunlin and a Ringed Plover also seen. On the ground were 6+ Whitethroats, 7+ Willow Warblers, a Wheatear and 3 Stonechats. Other raptors in the air at Noirmont were 9 Buzzards, a juvenile Marsh Harrier, a Sparrowhawk and 2 Kestrels.

At St Ouen's Pond this morning were 20 Sedge Warblers, 20 Reed Warblers, a Hobby, a family of Kestrels, 5 Willow Warblers, 10 Sand Martins, 5 House Martins an overnight roost of 1000 Swallows. An excellent 24 Greenfinches were also there..

This evening a Whinchat was by the shooting range at Les Landes.

A few extras for yesterday include 9 Mediterranean Gulls at L'Etacq and 3 Grey Herons and a Willow Warbler on Les Ecrehous.

Picture: A Whitethroat at Noirmont this morning.

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 12.08.2017   .Mick Dryden 

Hill fog obscured the Island this morning, although there was some visibility at sea level. The skies had cleared by lunchtime.

There was another strong showing of terns moving west past La Rocque on the rising tide this morning with 1021 Sandwich Terns, 2 Black Terns and 11 Common Terns passing in four hours. With them was a Balearic Shearwater, an adult pale phase Arctic Skua, 70 Gannets, and 3 Mediterranean Gulls. Waders passing included 360 Oystercatchers, 81 Curlews, a Redshank, 18 Grey Plovers, 2 Common Sandpipers, 131 Ringed Plovers, 35 Turnstones, 3 Sanderlings and 15 Dunlin. 14 Grey Herons and an immature female Peregrine were also in the area.

In the murk at St Ouen's Pond were 2 Dunlin, 2 Water Rails, 9 Sand Martins and a female Teal at the Wetland Centre and on the Scrape, another female Teal, a Greenshank, a Green Sandpiper, 2 Lapwings, 2 Wheatears, a Sedge Warbler and a Willow Warbler.

50 House Martins were feeding at Goose Green with a Buzzard overhead there and a Whitethroat was at Noirmont.

Yesterday afternoon, 12 Swifts flew over Beauport and a Kingfisher was seen again at Queen's Valley.

Picture: It looks like a decent breeding season for many species this year. This image shows a juvenile Little Egret at Le Pulec this week.

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 11.08.2017   .Mick Dryden 

A clear morning gave way to a cloudy afternoon with a little rain, winds in the north-west.

A decent selection of common species were to be seen around La Rocque and in Grouville Bay over the morning high tide.

The pick was a Cirl Bunting in trees at the Bree family home at Le Hurel, which flew off inland. Counts of birds flying west on the rising tide included 563 Sandwich Terns, 2 Common Terns, a Great Crested Grebe, 13 Mediterranean Gulls, 29 Grey Herons, 105 Little Egrets, a Peregrine annoying everything, 630 Oystercatchers, 57 Curlews, 3 Redshanks, 54 Dunlin, 2 Sanderlings, 120 Ringed Plovers, 9 Grey Plovers and 56 Turnstones. Also seen were 10 Swallows and 6 House Martins going south and a White Wagtail on the breakwater at La Rocque. 2 Wheatears were at Le Bourg.

10 Redshanks were roosting at St Aubin and 2 Green Sandpipers were at Millbrook Reservoir..

At St Ouen's Pond were 2 Shovelers, 5 Pochards, 50 Sedge Warblers, 15 Reed Warblers, 5 Willow Warblers, a Whitethroat, a Wheatear, 15 Sand Martins and 500 Swallows out of an overnight roost there. At the Wetland Centre and Scrape were 2 Green Sandpipers, a Common Sandpiper, a Water Rail, 2 Lapwings and a Sparrowhawk.

Les Ecrehous update: Seen around the reef today were 3 Storm Petrels, a Grey Heron, a Redshank and 2 Bottle-nosed Dolphins.

Picture: A Turnstone in breeding plumage at St Aubin this week.

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 10.08.2017   .Mick Dryden 

The rain cleared the Island just before dawn, leaving generally fine conditions , but cool in a strong northerly wind.

Early seabird movement past Grosnez, moving East included 42 Balearic Shearwaters, a Manx Shearwater, 145 Gannets, 59 Fulmars, a Sandwich Tern, a Mediterranean Gull, 78 Lesser Black-backed Gulls and a flock of 12 House Martins heading off North. 2 Peregrines were chasing each other, noisily at Les Landes where a single Raven was also present.

At Le Pulec were 2 Common Sandpipers, 2 Mediterranean Gulls, 45 Black-headed Gulls and 20 Little Egrets. Roosting at Petit Port were 2 Whimbrels, 37 Curlews, a Common Sandpiper, 110 Oystercatchers, 4 Sandwich Terns and 3 Little Egrets.

St Ouen's Pond held little with just 4 Pochard, a Grey Heron and 20 Sand Martins seen.

In the East, 7 Greenshanks were at Queen's Valley and 128 Ringed Plovers, 6 Turnstones, 2 Sanderlings, 3 Mediterranean Gulls, 220 Sandwich Terns and a Wheatear were in Grouville Bay.

Picture: A juvenile Redshank roosting at St Aubin yesterday.

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 09.08.2017   .Mick Dryden 

With a low circulating around the Channel Islands, it was a day of heavy showers especially late morning and this afternoon, with mainly light winds.

Good numbers of birds were flying past La Rocque on this morning's high tide. Dominant were Sandwich Terns with 1155 counted moving west, mainly to roost. Many more were farther out to sea but not countable as they were feeding and circulating. Closer in were a Black-necked Grebe in summer plumage, a Great Crested Grebe, 9 Mediterranean Gulls and 8 Common Scoters. Roosting on the rocks were 28 Grey Herons and 110 Little Egrets were between La Rocque Harbour and Le Hocq. Waders flying past included a Black-tailed Godwit, a Whimbrel, 13 Curlews, 459 Oystercatchers, 2 Redshanks, a Greenshank, 68 Ringed Plovers, 52 Dunlin and 27 Turnstones. 200 Black-headed Gulls were in Grouville Bay and a White Wagtail was on the breakwater.

On the seawall at St Aubin were 11 Redshanks and 7 Turnstones with 4 Common Terns and 9 Sandwich Terns feeding in the Bay.

At Grouville Marsh were 3 Willow Warblers, 2 Garden Warblers, a Sedge Warbler, 15 Blackcaps, 2 singing Cetti's Warblers and a Buzzard with young.

Nothing was moving at Noirmont. On the ground was a male Stonechat and 2 Willow Warblers with another Willow Warbler singing near the Scrape at St Ouen's Pond.

Les Ecrehous: A check around Marmotier to see if all the Common Tern chicks had now fledged found one new one, so good luck to him/her. 50 Turnstones, 50 Sandwich Terns and a Willow Warbler were there today too.

Picture: A juvenile Sandwich Tern passing La Rocque this morning.


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