The 2 Little Grebes remain on Longis Pond. 7 Balearic Shearwaters passed Chateua L’Etoc on the 10th. Little Egret are slowly on the increase with 6 recorded on the 13th and 20th. Migrant Grey Herons (most often seen in Corbletts quarry) are also passing through, with a high count of 5 on the 18th. Kestrel, Sparrowhawk, Peregrine and Buzzard have all been regularly spotted across the island. The sound of Water Rail returned to Longis pond on the 11th, with at least two calling on the 14th, then heard almost daily until 21st. Wader records include a fine summer plumage Grey Plover was present at Houme Herb 20th & 21st, Dunlin and Sanderling both recorded sporadically along the NE coast, Snipe on Longis pond 8th & 13th, Whimbrel recorded most days (8 on the 19th), single Redshanks spotted on the 7th & 8th, also 20th & 21st, 2 Green Sandpiper at Corbletts quarry 10th, 4 together on Longis pond on the 11th, also 3 Common Sandpiper along the NE coastline on the 13th. Mediterranean Gulls have been regularly spotted and small groups have been gathering at their historically favoured site at the north end of Braye bay, 2 Sandwich Terns passed chateau Le toc on the 12th. A Cuckoo was seen at Longis Common on the 7th and another at Fort Albert on the 9th. A pair of Barn Owls have been regularly hunting the grassland opposite Mannez lighthouse. A Tree Pipit was recorded flying over mannez quarry on the 21st and another was ringed at Longis reserve the same day. Meadow Pipits had a significant increase on the 20th to around 100 birds. The first autumn migrant Whinchat was seen on Longis common on the 7th, with another on the 20th with possibly the same bird ringed at Longis common on the 21st. Wheatears have been recorded daily from the 7th with 15 on the 15th. There is at least 1 Fan-tailed Warbler still present around Longis pond & common and our ringing is indicating that Sedge Warbler has had a particularly good year. As millions of Blackberries ripen Whitethroat numbers have been creeping up with the first migrants joining the local breeding birds, a single Garden warbler was ringed on the 21st. A Pied Flycatcher was seen at Mannez Quarry on the 8th, and one was ringed here on the 11th another was ringed at Longis reserve on the 20th. A Greenfinch flock frequenting Longis common is now at around 100 birds.
Teaming up with states works department ABO assistant warden Justin managed to locate a sizeable Asian Hornets nest which was dealt with by Jamie laband and his team. Jamie commented that Alderney has had two nests even lager than the one depicted below ! (Jamie – right, and Justin, left holding the Asian Hornets nest)
Whinchat – Longis Common 21/08. Photo JH.