This week saw our first staying guests of 2017 with Bird ringer/ birder Chris Mourant and Naturalist and photographer Vic Froome visiting from Guernsey. Thanks to you both for your help around the Obs as we make ready for ringers and birders coming this Spring. Chris has been ringing in Guernsey for some 20 years, he has put a lot of his own time and effort into sourcing materials for the observatory and during his latest visit the ABO took the opportunity to invite him to become the first ‘Fellow’ of our observatory in recognition of his efforts and support.


Chris Mourant in the Obs entrance/ boot room.

13th – A pair of Ravens over Longis Bay

14th- 1 Sand Martin over Longis common

17th – North West winds continued but during the evening of the 16th dropped off considerably. The morning was very still and soon after first light a Swallow passed over the Obs. Ringing continued all day with a steady passage of phylloscs around Essex farm, the days ringing total 113 Chiffchaffs and 2 Willow Warblers, the very last bird of the day was a UK ringed Chiffchaff. The Willow warblers were our first of the year, last spring our first was  not until 30th March. There were 4 Sand Martins over Longis common and Anne-Isabelle Boulon reported 2 Wheatears and a dozen white/pied Wagtails at Vaindsiare. A good day ended with a flock of 5 Redwings and 1 Fieldfare over Essex hill.

18th – Again poor weather and prevailing winds from the West. A flock of about 70 Meadow pipits were on the golf course as were a cracking pair of White Wagtails. A female peregrine was hunting over Braye Bay.

19th – Today howling NW winds. 1 Fieldfare at Whitegates and 2 Little Egrets at Longis Bay. Still plenty of Chiffchaffs apparent in sheltered areas. Paul & Catherine Veron managed some limited ringing at Mannez quarry reserve, a handful of birds processed included a Firecrest.