15th January 2021
This morning I kayaked to Samson where I discovered that there are now 4 Spoonbill and on the west beach, this new juvenile Iceland Gull.
For the first time since Sunday, the conditions were ideal for getting out in the kayak and by 08.30 I had reached Samson when the tide was just turning and where it proved to be pretty productive. Some 5-600 waders were feeding on the shore including, 220 Sanderling, 200+Ringed Plover, 100+Turnstone, 6 Dunlin, 34 Curlew, 2 Redshank and 2 Purple Sandpiper. There was also 6 Mediterranean Gull and a high count of 23 Common Gull. A quick stomp over between the two hills and nothin of note. It was only when I was rowing east out towards Tresco that I caught the 3 Spoonbill touching down on a group of rocks just off Samson. Then, with my naked eye, I picked up a distant white-winger coming from Bryher and before I could get my bins on it, it disappeared behind the North Hill of Samson. It looked good for an Iceland Gull but I had to check it out just incase it turned out to be a Kumlien’s Gull. I took the chance and found myself back on Samson scanning the west beach. It payed off as there it was on the shore and proved to a new juvenile Iceland Gull. As I returned to my kayak, a Spoonbill flew in from the west overhead and towards Tresco. I looked at the rocks just off Samson to see that there were still 3 Spoonbill sat on top. So there are now 4 Spoonbill altogether and I’m guessing the loner is the 1st winter that’s been making the odd visit to St Mary’s in the last two weeks.
While the 3 Spoonbill were on the rocks off Samson, this 1st winter flew in from the west, NE towards Tresco
And just before the Spoonbill appeared from the west, this juvenile Iceland Gull flew in from the north from Bryher and proved to be a new arrival making it now four Iceland Gull recorded already this year on Scilly
On the east shore of Samson there were some 5-600 waders including this Purple Sandpiper
In with the high count of 23 Common Gull were up to 6 Mediterranean Gull including this 1st winter
As there have three cases of covid on Tresco, I was told that it was sound to visit the island. Near to Skirt Island there was the female Eider and I thought I had turned up another adult Scandinavain Herring Gull. However, when I returned home, a quick check at the images proved it to be the same adult I had nine days ago at Morning Point. I didn’t have much time and just managed to do the two pools and Pool Road. The wind was predicted to increase later on and I needed to return in the next two hours and it had already gone mid-day. It was the same old wildfowl on the Great Pool with the male Shoveler, female Tufted Duck, 4 Wigeon and Teal, Gadwal and Mallard. However, there was no sign of the female Pintail or the 7 Pochard from last week. The sun came out while walking Pool Road and as a result I got 3 Firecrest with the 15 Chiifchaff. This made it 4 Firecrest altogether as I heard one earlier at Rosefield Crossroad. I also head the Great Spotted Woodpecker nearby and the Buzzard flew towards Abbey Woods. Returning back east along the road, I stopped off at the David Hunt hide for the second time. It was while in the hide that I could hear a vocal Cetti’s Warbler calling to my left. It continued to call when I rushed out to try and see it. All I got was a glimpse now and then, as it stayed down low in the reeds. As there has never been a record of Cetti’s Warbler away from St Mary’s, this makes it the first record for Tresco. Maybe it’s one of the youngesters from this year expanding it’s range just a little bit further out from St Mary’s. I could feel the wind picking up as I heard yet another Firecrest passing the west end of the Abbey Pool. My guess is that this is probably the fifth bird of the day. Who knows but where have they all come from as there has been a single on every visit I’ve made to Tresco this winter? It was shortly after 1600 and I was back home feeding my mate the juvenile Glaucous Gull only meters away in front of my window before he flew off to roost. I don’t think there are many folk who can say that they’ve got a Glaucous Gull that hangs around waiting for you to come home and an Iceland Gull as well!
This adult Scandinavain Herring Gull near to skirt Island, proved to be the same adult I had nine days ago at Morning Point.
Up to 4 Firecrest were along Pool Road with possibly a different bird on the west end of the Abbey Pool
There were also up to 15 Chiffchaff
It’s great to come home to a Glaucous Gull begging at such close range, only meters away from your window. If this continues with ‘Billy’ the Icland Gull, who also begs waiting patently at the window, I’ll have to give him a name as well.
And here’s the pro ‘Billy’ whose been begging at my window now for two and half months. It’s even landed on the bird table!
And here’s poor old ‘Stumpy’ who hangs out with ‘Kirk’ the Song Thrush every day
yesterday at Morning Point, I had this 2nd winter Yellow-legged Gull and observed a Sparrowhawk in off the sea.