Saturday, 10 October 2015

Annual Lark

With promises of hurricanes etc. coming to nought it has been a slow week on St Agnes. Slim pickings with the best being Peregrine, Merlin, Redstart, Black Redstart, Pied Flycatcher and Firecrest.

Black Redstart

Humminbird Hawk-moth in the garden
On the 8th, as a birthday treat, I paid a visit to St Mary's. It was looking similarly quiet on here with nothing on the golf course and just a calling Yellow-browed Warbler at Porth Hellick. My luck changed when I moved to the airfield where a hunting Kestrel lifted the Meadow Pipit flock and I managed to find a Short-toed Lark. Very distant and looking through a heavy heat haze made identification difficult and photographs impossible. A Lapland Bunting and a Skylark shared the field and a female Sparrowhawk made a low pass. The Red-throated Diver had moved to Old Town Bay, giving brief views as it spent most of the time underwater. I got a glimpse of a large pipit on Peninnis, probably the Richard's reported earlier, but it disappeared before I could raise my bins. A Black Redstart has taken up residency in Porthcressa Bay.

The next day started with flushing an enormous female Peregrine off her kill (an unfortunate juvenile Herring Gull). Another trip to St Mary's followed to search for the Isabelline Wheatear found the previous evening. No luck, but I did manage some shots of the Short-toed Lark, which was feeding much closer to the edge of the air field.

Short-toed Lark

The Black Redstart was again on Porthcressa Beach, sharing the bay with 3 Kingfisher.

Today I moved base from St Agnes to St Mary's, but despite walking twenty-odd miles I failed to turn up anything new.

Swallow ready for the off

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