Sunday, 30 August 2015

Paddyfield departs

No sign of the Paddyfield Warbler today, though a new Blackcap  reported and Whitethroat also apparently fresh in. Otherwise a significant clear-out of migrants, with only one of the previously group of Whinchat in the Kirkton and Slains area being seen.

The local pools continue to hold good numbers of Ruff. There were 2 Little Stint at the Snub Car park  at about 13.30 today and a Spotted Redshank.

Maybe the only pictures of the Paddyfield taken yesterday due to its elusive behaviour were taken by Nick Littlewood. One of these record shots is shown below.

Paddyfield Warbler, Collieston, 29.8.15

Ruff, nr Collieston, 30.8.15

Saturday, 29 August 2015

Paddyfield Warbler-Collieston Churchyard

After the good finds of the Forvie Greenish Warbler and supporting cast, it seemed maybe things would turn quieter:
Perhaps birds working down the coast, or maybe the extra cover in Collieston has held more, but new sightings since included a new Reed Warbler on Wednesday at the roadside bushes, and then yesterday 1 + Pied Flycatcher, Lesser Whitethroat, Garden Warbler and Wood Warbler. There was also a very fleeting sighting of an interesting acrocephalus warbler first thing yesterday in the churchyard, but it was not seen in the evening.
 Its identity was sorted this morning as a Paddyfield Warbler- new for the patch, and only the second for the region following the Logie Buchan bird a few years ago, which was only seen by a few.
Mostly extremely elusive , when it does show it seems to be best to view from the road.It does call fairly regularly-a usually quiet "chek". First thing it also gave a couple of "cherr" calls.
It usually frequents more eastern locations in Central Asia and around the Caspian and Black seas.

Bit of cloud appearing outside just now, so maybe some hope it will stay for another day.

There was also Reed Warbler, Pied Flycatcher and Lesser Whitethroat in the nearby roadside trees and bushes.

Thursday, 27 August 2015


Now at last we've got a quiet evening, it's time to reflect on what's been a stonking few days on the patch. As reported by Collieston Birder, things kicked off last week with a nice selection of common migrants plus PS's rather lovely Arctic Warbler on Forvie - a first for Rosie and I. The Red-backed Shrike that dropped in at Sand Loch Corner last Thursday was a welcome addition to the total as well.

Right on cue, this Shrike was one of several in the North-east last week.

After a weekend away (and predictably dipping CB's Icterine Warblers), we were back into the fray on Monday evening, in lovely conditions of light easterly and drizzle. Two hours around North Forvie at dusk produced a Greenish Warbler (making a nice 'double' after last week's Arctic), two Wrynecks together in one willow, a Wood Warbler, a Reed Warbler, two Pied Flycatchers and yet more common migrants. A champagne session on the patch!

One of two Wrynecks at the Coastguard's Pool, Forvie.

The following morning the Greenish was still present, and showed well if briefly - though its voice was a big giveaway while it remained hidden! Another Wryneck was also present alongside it, and could have been a different bird to the previous night's duo.

Upon returning home after the working day, things then continued with a brace of Reed Warblers performing in the garden throughout the evening.

Reed Warbler loving the scrub in the garden. There's a second one in there somewhere!

Even today, three days after the fall, birds continue to trickle through, with a Whinchat at Sand Loch Corner this morning and a Willow Warbler in the garden at supper time. Why can't the patch be like this all the time?!

One of many Whinchats to pass through in the last few days.

Sunday, 23 August 2015

Autumn starts here

The last 2 weeks has seen a big surge in wader numbers on the Ythan, with good numbers of a number of species, though Dunlin seem especially numerous this year. A lot of Ruff are now coming through as well, with a flock of 60 currently just off the estuary south of Meikle Loch. A highlight was the adult White-rumped Sandpiper (CNG) which was present around the Newburgh end for 2 or 3 days last weekend.
The heavy rain on Tuesday of last week, and the persistent easterly winds resulted in a good fall of migrants, with the Forvie sands getting the star bird in the form of an Arctic Warbler (PS) found on Wednesday late afternoon.
 Surprisingly this was the first accepted of this species in the region  since 1979 I think. Interesting to note that bird was on almost exactly the same date as this one, and nearby on the Foveran links.
Wednesday morning also brought a Lesser Whitethroat, Pied and Spotted Flycatcher, and good numbers of Willow Warbler to Kirkton. The number of Butterflies turning up as well was striking, especially Painted Ladies.
The fall continued to turn up interesting birds locally , with a Red-backed Shrike  at the Sandloch, found by a fellow blogger, and then an Icterine Warbler on Saturday 22nd in the Kirkton roadside trees. Willow Warbler numbers were high, and also notable were the number of Whinchats with a count of 8 in and around the village yesterday. The remained a few Pied and Spotted Flycatchers also.
A Marsh Harrier flew over Kirkton yesterday, a Wood Sandpiper is just over the crossroads yesterday and today on the small flood.

There were 3 Little Stint to be seen on the upper Ythan Estuary yesterday, and there were various smaller groups of Ruff on the feilds and the Estuary.

Painted Lady, Forvie Centre

Red-backed Shrike, Sandloch


Small Tortiseshell, Forvie Centre

Whinchat, Kirkton

Wood Sandpiper, nr Collieston