UK Bird Sightings
A comprehensive round-up of birds seen on your patch during June
The rarest bird of the month was undoubtedly the Elegant Tern seen on Brownsea Island NT, Dorset, (21 June) then in the mouth of Poole Harbour (22nd), which was the same colour-ringed individual temporarily relocating from West Sussex. Otherwise, the rarest birds seen were two Little Shearwaters photographed 40km south of the Devon coast on 2 June. AVON SEVERNSIDE: Little Ringed Plovers remained at two coastal sites with birds displaying but no evidence of breeding success. A Spoonbill dropped in at Pilning Wetlands (3rd). Good seawatch days at Severn Beach produced two Fulmars and up to two Arctic Skuas (6th-11th), an Arctic and a Sandwich Tern (6th), a Guillemot (11th), a male Common Scoter (12th) and a female (23rd), single Storm Petrels (6th & 23rd) and a maximum of nine Gannets (6th). Best counts of Manx Shearwaters here were 120 (9th) and 80 (25th). On the 25th there were two Kittiwakes here and a Fulmar was seen from Portbury Wharf. Sheppardine (Oldbury) had nine Knot (19th). Less usual waders around Severn Beach/northwick Warth included a Grey Plover (2nd), two Curlew Sandpipers (11th), and an unseasonal Snipe (3rd & 7th). Two Mediterranean Gulls (adult and first-summer) turned up (22nd). A juvenile Yellow Wagtail (5th) was unexpected. A second-summer Yellow-legged Gull at Littleton Warth (10th) was unusual here. PORTISHEAD AND CLEVEDON AREA: The best of the waders were three Whimbrels and a Bar-tailed Godwit (5th). WESTON-SUPER-MARE AREA: Seawatching from Anchor Head (6th) produced 11 Fulmars, 82 Manx Shearwaters, 31 Gannets and a Kittiwake. THE RESERVOIRS: Litton Reservoirs held an immature female Scaup and an unseasonable White Wagtail (both 16th). Chew’s Whitefronted Goose of unknown provenance had the decency to disappear after the 2nd. A female Goldeneye was at Chew (1st-23rd), then an immature turned up at Barrow Gurney (27th). Five Common Scoters appeared at Chew (29th). A Great White Egret at Blagdon (8th) and Chew (9th) may have been the same bird. Gulls at Chew included a Little Gull (30th) and one or two immature Yellow-legged Gulls for much of the month. OTHER SITES: Red Kite seems to be well established in the county this summer with feeding flocks of up to eight reported from many locations. Marshfield hosted Quail all month with up to three calling but rarely seen, as usual. A lonesome drake Mandarin remained at Saltford all month and four were reported at Uley, Glos (11th). Unusual records for Avon included two Turtle Doves seen in Bristol, a couple of reports of Firecrest, a Nightingale singing on the Somerset border (6th-10th), a Hawfinch flying over Saltford (9th) and a Jack Snipe reported from Bristol (24th). Jane Cumming CHANNEL ISLANDS JERSEY: Five pairs of Cirl Buntings bred on Grouville Common. Three Firecrests were in St Catherines Woods. A Golden Oriole was at Victoria Tower near Gorey (1st). The Spoonbill remained at the Wetlands Centre (to 2nd), with Bearded Tits, Marsh Harriers and Lapwings also seen. Grey Herons bred nearby. East of Plemont, 16 Puffins, a Black Guillemot, five Guillemots and 14 Razorbills were seen. Hundreds of Manx Shearwaters, a few Balearic Shearwaters and Great Skuas, and two Sooty Shearwaters passed Grosnez. A Great White Egret was at Havre des Pas (25th). About 50 pairs of Barn Owls used provided nestboxes. Mediterranean Gulls started to return to Grouville Bay. Peregrines bred in St Helier bred. A Lesser Kestrel was at St Martin’s camp site. Buzzards, Cetti’s Warblers, Dartford Warblers and Short-toed Treecreepers were numerous. Shelducks bred at L’etacq and La Rocque. About 50 pairs of Common Terns were on the Ecrehous, where the odd pair of Sandwich Terns, Cormorants, Shags and Little Egrets bred. Bertram Bree CORNWALL HIGHLIGHTS: A Quail was at Windmill Farm (25th). Cattle Egrets were at Walmsley (26th-28th) and Clapper Marshes (27th-28th). Great White Egrets were at Helston and Stithians (1st-7th), Colliford (13th) and Hayle (14th). A Purple Heron was at Mawgan Porth (13th). A Black Kite flew over St Buryan (19th). Red Kites were seen all month, with 24 over Lizard Point (19th). Two Red-footed Falcons were at Nanjizal (1st). Another wandered around Windmill Farm, Predannack, Hayle Kimbro and Lizard Village (6th-13th), with others at Wadebridge (18th) and Cadgwith (25th-26th). A Saker was reported from Nanjizal (2nd-4th). An Osprey flew through the Upper Fowey Valley (14th). A Crane was near Lostwithiel (19th). Four Roseate Terns were at Marazion (29th-30th), wandering as far as Penzance. Another four were seen off St Ives (30th). A Hoopoe was on Goss Moor (4th). A Wryneck was in a Penzance garden (29th). A Red-rumped Swallow was at Ponongath and a Melodious Warbler at Marazion (17th). Seawatching produced a few Cory’s and Great Shearwaters (from 19th). Sooty Shearwaters, Balearic Shearwaters and Storm Petrels were seen off both coasts (5th-30th). Two Pomarine Skuas were off Porthgwarra (4th) and two at Downderry (5th). Sabine’s Gulls were seen from Lamorna Cove (10th) and Porthgwarra (23rd). Sara Mcmahon DEVON NORTH DEVON: Lundy had a Rose-coloured Starling (1st), Red-rumped Swallow (2nd), 253 Puffins and a Water Rail. Hartland Point had a Great Skua and 16 Storm Petrels. Red Kites were at Lynton, Winkleigh (two), Combe Martin and Shirwell. Skern had six Mediterranean Gulls, with five on the Taw Estuary. A Little Gull was at Saunton Sands. Lower Tamar Lake had a Common Sandpiper and Kingfisher. SOUTH DEVON: Red Kites were at 10 sites. Brixham had two Puffins, two Great Skuas, a Manx Shearwater and 20 Storm Petrels. Exminster had a Marsh Harrier, Hobby and two Red Kites. Dousland had three pairs of Redstarts and two Cuckoos. Teignmouth had two Storm Petrels, four Pomarine Skuas, 115 Manx Shearwaters and 20 Kittiwakes. Start Point had 12 Storm Petrels, two Balearic Shearwaters, 21 Puffins, three Sandwich Terns and 1,600 Manx Shearwaters. Berry Head had three Balearic Shearwaters, three Great Skuas, an Arctic Skua, 34 Puffins, two Sooty Shearwaters, 2,400 Manx Shearwaters and 42 Storm Petrels. Seaton had a Red-backed Shrike (5th). Budleigh Salterton had eight Storm Petrels, a Mediterranean Gull, 12 Sandwich Terns, 24 Kittiwakes and a Ring-necked Parakeet. Stover CP had 50 Sand Martins and five Kingfishers. Soussons held two Whinchats, six Tree Pipits, four Cuckoos, a Spotted Flycatcher, three Redstarts and six Great Spotted Woodpeckers. Dippers bred at Grenofen. A Bee-eater was at Torbay (9th), with eight at Galmpton and two at Holsworthy (11th). Exmouth had a Balearic Shearwater, 23 Storm Petrels, an Arctic Skua, Pomarine Skua, 127 Manx Shearwaters and a Little Tern. Soar had a Hobby and good numbers of Cirl Buntings and Yellowhammers. Venford Reservoir had a Cuckoo, Redstart, Spotted Flycatcher, two Tree Pipits, three Pied Flycatchers, a Wood Warbler and several Siskins. The Eddystone Lighthouse area logged two Storm Petrels, a Puffin and 400 Manx Shearwaters. East Soar and Trendlebeare had six Nightjars, with seven Nightjars at Cann Woods, three at Stover, two at Kennick Reservoir and five at Ideford Cross. Clearbrook held two Spotted Flycatchers, four Lesser Redpolls, five Siskins and four Tree Pipits. South Brent had a Barn Owl. Bowling Green Marsh logged a Great White Egret, Spotted Sandpiper, Whimbrel, Green Sandpiper, Spotted Redshank, three Common Sandpipers and three Greenshanks. Staverton recorded six Grey Wagtails and two Dippers. Aish Tor, Dartmoor had three Garden Warblers and two Tree Pipits. Yarner had three pairs of Redstarts. An Alpine Swift was at the Otter Estuary. Aylesbeare Common had a Tree Pipit, Green Woodpecker, six Yellowhammers, and a Dartford Warbler. Torbay had two Mediterranean Gulls. Goodrington had a Yellow-legged Gull and 44 Common Scoters. THURLESTONE BAY: Highlights included 231 Common Scoters, a Great Northern Diver, seven Fulmars, a Sooty Shearwater, 285 Manx Shearwaters, three Balearic Shearwaters, three Storm Petrels, 150 Gannets, three Cattle Egrets, three Little Egrets, a Red Kite, Hobby, 15 Oystercatchers, a Little Ringed Plover, two Sanderling, two Dunlin, three Black-tailed Godwits, a Whimbrel, two Curlews, six Redshanks, a Knot, Arctic Skua, 10 Kittiwakes, a Yellow-legged Gull, Caspian Gull, three Sandwich Terns and 200 Swifts. Cirl Buntings were at two sites. The first patch record of Hawfinch was near Hope Cove. Harvey Kendall and Mike Passman (thurlestonebaybirds.co.uk) DORSET HIGHLIGHTS: A Greenish Warbler and Golden Oriole were on Portland (1st). A Woodchat Shrike was at Abbotsbury (2nd), when a Turtle Dove and Red-footed Falcon were at Portland. Another Red-footed Falcon was at Morden Bog (18th). Quails were at Durlston (4th) and West Compton (15th-21st). A Buff-breasted Sandpiper was at Lytchett Fields and a Serin at Southwell (15th). A Montagu’s Harrier was in the Blandford area (19th). An Elegant Tern roosted on Brownsea Island (21st). A Common Rosefinch was in Southwell (from 22nd). Lodmoor recorded an Alpine Swift (24th). CHRISTCHURCH HARBOUR AREA: Highlights included Common Scoters, Manx Shearwaters, Storm Petrels, Lapwings, a Marsh Harrier, Whimbrel, Curlews, Black-tailed Godwits, Redshanks, a Common Sandpiper, Arctic Skua, Common Gulls, Mediterranean Gulls, Kittiwakes, a Cuckoo and Firecrest. POOLE HARBOUR AREA: Birds present were Spoonbills, Avocets, Lapwings, Little Ringed Plovers, Curlews, Black-tailed Godwits, Green Sandpipers, Redshanks, a Spotted Redshank, Greenshank, Snipe, Mediterranean Gulls, a Yellow-legged Gull and Little Tern. PORTLAND: Birds passing were Common Scoters, Manx, Sooty and Balearic Shearwaters, Storm Petrels, Great Skuas, Arctic Skuas, a Longtailed Skua, Puffin and Whimbrels. Lodmoor held Bitterns and a Green Sandpiper. OTHER SITES: Abbotsbury had Green Sandpiper and Little Gull. Ferrybridge had Dunlin and Sanderling. West Bexington had Storm Petrels past. Longham Lakes had Garganey and Common Sandpiper. Red Kites were at eight sites, Hobbies seven and Ospreys three. Robin Trundle ISLES OF SCILLY HIGHLIGHTS: The long-staying Night Herons remained in Holy Vale, a Grey Plover on Tresco was unseasonal and a Turtle Dove was on Bryher (1st). Two Great Skuas and 20 Storm Petrels were near the Pol Bank (1st). A Short-toed Lark and Quail were at Deep Point, St Mary’s (2nd). A Golden Oriole was on St Martin’s (3rd). A Little Egret was in Tresco Channel, a Lesser Redpoll at Lower Moors, a Hobby at Porth Hellick, and a Sooty Shearwater and Great Skua at sea(4th). The Hobby was subsequently seen at Trenoweth, St Agnes, St Mary’s and Rocky Hill. A Balearic Shearwater was seen from the Scillonian (7th). Three very late Turnstones were on Tresco (8th-9th). A Lesser Redpoll was at Porth Hellick (9th). The first Sabine’s Gull of the year was reported from the Scillonian (10th). The first Wilson’s Petrel was south of the islands along with 30 Storm Petrels (12th). A Barnacle Goose was on Tresco, with Cuckoos on Bryher and St Martin’s (12th). A pair of Lesser Whitethroats appeared to be breeding on Bryher, only their second breeding attempt on Scilly, the last being in the 1960’s. An influx of Swifts was noted (13th) when 24 were over Telegraph, St Mary’s. A White Wagtail was at Old Town (14th). A Sooty Shearwater was seen at sea (15th), when the Little Egret was in Tresco Channel. The first Common Terns for some time were between the islands (19th) with some trying to breed on Annet later in the month. A Quail was in Warna’s Cove, St Agnes (20th). Two Black-headed Gulls flew over Porth Loo (21st). Two Balearic Shearwaters flew past the Scillonian (28th). Will Wagstaff WILTSHIRE HIGHLIGHTS: Major rarity was a superb male Red-backed Shrike, which unfortunately remained for only a day at Blakehill. A Turtle Dove at Whiteparish was the only other major rarity! Waders included Green and Common Sandpipers, Little Ringed Plover, Black-tailed Godwit and Redshank at Langford Lakes, and there were two reports of breeding Curlews. Mediterranean Gulls passed through on two occasions at Salisbury and Lesser Black-backed Gull numbers began to build with 275 at the Water Park. Wood Warbler, Crossbill and Siskin were at Franchises Wood and it was pleasing to get reports of Spotted Flycatchers at seven sites.
Swifts and House Martins were late back at breeding colonies but 450 Swifts were noted at Lower Pertwood. A Hawfinch was at Bemerton Heath, Quail at SPTA and Russley Down and a Nightjar at SPTA. Rob Turner