Our male Little Grebe is still present (and single) on Longis pond. A couple of very still and dark nights 11th and 15th gave us the opportunity to try and ring some Storm Petrels, both nights were successful with 59 birds processed in total. The below photo (JH) of a Storm Petrel underwing (used for assisting with sexing individuals)

Following a gap for us here during their breeding period, the first juvenile Little Egret was in Longis Bay on the 17th. A pair of Kestrels have been regularly seen in Mannez quarry often perching in the highest window ledges of the lighthouse at Mannez. On the 19th a pair of Peregrines with a noisy fledged youngster were active over the airport and at the time writing this the young Buzzard we ringed on the south cliffs is doing very well ! Migrant Waders on the move included 8 Whimbrels along the NE coast on the 18th, a Redshank in Longis Bay on the 13th, Green Sandpiper passing over Corbletts on the 17th and Common Sandpipers reported on the 13th, 18th & 19th. Mediterranean Gulls are back in good numbers, reported from several locations with Crabby Bay the favoured location, here there were 20 on the 12th. Also on Crabby single Common Gulls on the 13th & 15th on the back of 2 Common Gulls in Longis Bay on the 11th. Crabby Bay also produced 2 Yellow legged Gulls on the 10th and another on the 16th, all sub-adult birds identified by our resident Gull ace Paul Veron. There were 4 Sandwich Terns off Houme Herbe on the 18th and yesterday wonderful news that 2 Common Terns (the first of more hopefully) have fledged on Bibette Head. During our first year of operation in 2016 the ABO identified the Common Tern colony as a priority for action after observing zero breeding success during that year. During 2017 we were joined by our assistant warden Justin Hart who tasked with the project has been its leading light. We then monitored this small colony during 2017 with observations and cameras discovering that there was no doubt that the major issue on the nesting headland (only accessible at low tide) was rats predating chicks. Moving into 2018 the ABO teamed up with Jamie Laband of the Alderney States works department bringing the issue to their attention, this resulted in some excellent teamwork between the states, the ABO and AWT, giving some very valuable fieldwork experience for the AWT’s RAMSAR officer to take forwards.  The whole headland area was heavily bated well in advance of the returning Terns and it did the job! A slow burner regards progress perhaps, but for the first time in many years we have breeding success to fledging of the Common Tern in Alderney. The below photo (JH) was taken on the 14th July, this young Common Tern looking to be just a few days from fledging, and likely one of the two observed on the wing yesterday.

A juvenile Cuckoo was seen on Longis Common on the 13th. Following the flock of Sand Martins 5th July 2 singles were spotted 10th and 18th. 2 House Martins were seen on the 11th. A Grasshopper Warbler was reported from Longis common on the 13th and 3 juvenile Dartford Warblers at the Giffione on the 11th. Our first return passage Willow Warbler was caught and ringed on Longis reserve on the 14th.   Communications with ringers across the Channel Isles suggest a good breeding season for passerines, particularly Blackcap. On the 19th we caught this male Blackcap (photo JH) at Mannez reserve, it had an unusually large amount of pollen on his cap.

A fabulous year for butterflies here as we currently see our second wave of Common Blue and this week huge numbers of Gatekeeper (photo JH) with around 500 individuals on Brambles in Mannez quarry on the 18th.

Lastly, single Grey Seals have been spotted in Longis Bay on the 13th and Crabby Bay on the 16th. On the 18th 20+ Bottle nose Dolphins were close in to shore off Houme Herbe.