30th August

An update for Obs members and visitors on the situation with the Obs Quarry and adjacent fields: today we heard from our solicitors that the various legal necessities that followed our purchase of these parcels of land at auction on 27th July have been completed and we are now officially the owners. Many thanks indeed to our Hon Treasurer, Lucy Cumberland, for her time and effort in dealing with this matter on our behalf.

A vast improvement on recent days, the wind from the North-east and heavy cloud cover for much of the morning aided in enhancing our day tallies immensely. The morning started with cracking views of a hunting Barn Owl across the newly purchased field followed by 50+ Yellow Wagtails, 12 Tree Pipits, 7 Grey Wagtails and a possible Ortolan Bunting. Yesterday's Wryneck put in another appearance in the garden favouring the warm, open grass where it was joined by 7 Spotted Flycatchers, 1 Male Redstart (a second was sighted in the top fields), 1 Garden Warbler, 25 Willow Warblers, one of three Pied Flycatchers, 11 Robins, 1 Chiffchaff and 5 Sedge Warblers. The top fields provided some added bonuses with 1 Short-eared Owl, 18 Wheatears, 1 Whinchat, 10 Willow Warblers, 18 Whitethroats, 25 Meadow Pipits and a Hobby. The Balearic Shearwaters had a resurgence today with 29 past the Bill this morning accompanied by 5 Common Scoter, 1 Manx Shearwater, 1 Dunlin, 1 Common Tern and 7 Teal.

Elsewhere on the island the migrants were starting to show their faces with Yellow Wagtails at Suckthumb, Ferrybridge and Weston. A Spotted Flycatcher, female Redstart and 6 Blackcaps were also of note in Suckthumb quarry and a Pied Flycatcher at Blacknor. An Osprey flew south over Ferrybridge, with 138 Ringed Plover, 28 Dunlin, 2 Sanderling, 18 Turnstones, 3 Wheatears, 1 Yellow Wagtail and 2 Mute Swans making up the rest of the totals there.

Perhaps not the rarest of the days birds but its difficult not to be impressed by Whinchats in their new autumnal regalia © Nick Stantiford: