8th June 2020
I immediately changed from my bins to my camera when I saw the reddish tail and rufus underwing on this buzzard as it gained height, drifting west over Tresco Great Pool.
At 09.00 this morning I was at Porthloo having a good look at the Yellow-legged Gull feeding on the shore with 2 Black-headed Gull and a Swift flew east. I looked out across the calm water out to Samson and that made my mind up to kayak to Tresco. On the latter island, I was already counting the waders on the South Beach, after parking the kayak at Bathing House Porth. Some 33 Turnstone, 18 Sanderling, 13 Dunlin, 6 Whimbrel, 15 Curlew were feeding among the 80 Oystercatcher. There was also a male Greenland Wheatear and 5 Grey Heron flew out south. Just off shore, but too far out for the camera, was a stunning summer plumage Great Northern Diver.
The light was a lot better than yesterday evening when I first had this Yellow-legged Gull at Porthloo
On Tresco I counted 33 Turnstone on the South Beach which is a very high number for this time of year
As was a count of 18 Sanderling
7 of the 13 Dunlin feeding on South Beach
If only this summer plumage Great Northern Diver was a tad closer off South Beach
This male Greenland Wheatear was also on South Beach
It had gone 13.00, I had seen nothin of note except a vocal Siskin a number of times. I was walking Pool Road and approaching the entrance to the David Hunt Hide. From the east, I spotted a buzzard from over the trees and raised my bins. I thought that maybe it was the resident buzzard but I didn’t think that it had been seen this year. I casually lifted up my bins and just from the tail I quickly ruled out that this was the usual buzzard that’s been on Tresco for a number of years. Immediately I could see from below, that it appeared to have a reddish tail and rufus underwing coverts. The raptor was not hanging around as it continued towards the Great Pool. I snapped of as many shots as I could before it disappeared behind the trees. I ran towards the hide and relocated the buzzard gaining height above the pool always moving west. The light was so bad and as the bird climbed higher it drifted off west towards Samson/Bryher. I knew Will Wagstaff was on Samson, after putting news out of a Marsh Harrier that he saw on there earlier, but when I called him to let him know that an interesting buzzard was coming his ways, he told me that he was back at home. I put the news out as ‘Interesting buzzard showing features of Steppe?’ with pics on the Scilly Bird WhatsApp Group after sending the pics to other birders to see what they thought of it? Birders on St Mary’s were keen to see the buzzard and were hoping it would head their way but an hour later I picked it up again distantly over Middle Down.
In the field the tail appeared more reddish than in the above record shots. Although I’ve seen good numbers of Steppe Buzzard in Morocco, Palestine and more recently in march in Egypt. However, when do you stop to study them, no matter how well they show. If I saw the Tresco Buzzard in the above countries, I would just pass it off as a Steppe Buzzard but we all know that there are so many dodgy variations of Buzzards around. Some of them even looking like Steppe Buzzard.
This Blackbird was sunbathing on Abbey Drive.
On Castle Down, there were 9 swift, 10 House Martin and a single female Wheatear. It was now 18.15 and I was at the west fields looking over Tresco Channel when I noticed the buzzard sp low heading east after arriving from Bryher. I lost it behind the trees and although I stayed on the island for another hour, I never saw it again. Sadly it looks like the Pochard were not successful with their single duckling as I didn’t any on both bodies of water.
Later, I had a closer but very brief encounter with the buzzard sp after arriving from Bryher Any comments most welcome on this buzzard
It looks like it’s been a good breeding season for Blackcap on Tresco. I must of seen well over 20 including two families
As I returned to the kayak, the Oystercatcher were roosting on the South Beach
Looking from Castle Down towards Round Island lighthouse