November 3rd

A ‘plump’ (yes the collective noun for geese resting on water is a plump! – been waiting to get that one in for ages) of 9 Dark-bellied Brent Geese were in Longis Bay at high tide this morning. 9 Siskins flew over Essex and a Black Redstart on the Obs ramparts. At Mannez a Merlin, a Woodcock and 3 Swallows were seen. Whilst there was a marked decrease in thrushes and Robins today there was an increase in Woodpigeons,  with several migrating flocks through involving around 500 birds. I flushed up a Woodcock whilst opening the Essex nets. 3 Woodcock were seen at Longis reserve along with a male Shoveler, 4 Teal, 3 Snipe, 1  Jack Snipe, 2 Swallows, 2 Grey Wagtails, 8 Skylarks, 1 Brambling, Cetti’s Warbler and 2 Reed Buntings.

Daivd Child reports a single Lapwing east of the airfield present for the last two days and a flock of 800 Starlings this pm in the same area. Also a Red Admiral butterfly was by the airfield’s eastern boundary. At Braye this morning – 2 Bar-tailed Godwits and 1 Grey Plover.

Winds turned last night to greet us from the south this morning. With extra personnel in the shape of our last group of visiting ringers arriving last night and staying at the Obs for a week, ringing took place at Essex farm, Longis, and Mannez nature reserves.  The first Bullfinch ringed on the island since 1979 was caught at Essex farm. Records suggest Bullfinch was a fairly common breeder here until the mid 1970’s, with an impressive 29 ringed during 1967.  Records decline steadily through the following two decades and reports of this species are not even annual beyond the turn of the century. A total of 87 new birds were ringed today:35 Redwings, 9 Song Thrushes, 7 Blackbirds, 1 Fieldfare, 2 Robins, 8 Wrens, 5 Blackcaps, 4 Chiffchaffs, 1 Goldcrest, 5 Great Tits, 1 Blue Tit, 4 Goldfinches, 4 Chaffinches and 1 Bullfinch.

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1st winter female Bullfinch – Essex Farm – Photo – ABO

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