(Top row: Coal Tit and Black Redstart, middle row: Red-backed Shrike and Hawfinch, bottom row: Tufted Ducks and Yellow-browed Warbler)
Thursday 6th December comments: Now the dust is settling on the completion of another Isle of May season we will look back over the year and bring you the various highlights from the season. Today we start with the scarce birds which arrived on the island throughout the season and made headlines (locally!)
The location of the Isle of May makes it ideal for migrants to arrive from all corners of the globe. However its not just about extreme rare birds but also unusual visitors to the island from the nearby mainland. Woodland birds are rare (the last Blue Tit was seen back in 2005 and the only ever Magpie was in 1986!).
This year we welcomed five Treecreepers (a record number), only the 10th ever Raven, the 10th-12th ever Hawfinch, the first Shoveler since 2010, Stock Dove (less than annual), two Coal Tits and seven Long-tailed Tits, all making it fascinating viewing locally. We also had record counts of several species including Tufted Duck, Grey Plover, Black Guillemot and Pomarine Skua amongst others.
However this is the Isle of May and we had rarer species which arrived but more about that in the next few days….