1st September

As the first of September rolled around, it was with clear skies and not a breath of wind. Another excitingly species-rich day, if a little disappointing on the numbers side as the open blue skies proved to be too enticing to migrants who may have otherwise taken brief respite in the garden. Despite the pitiful ringing tally, birds were clearly on the move with fly-over waders including Wood Sandpiper, Ringed Plover, Curlew and Whimbrel, as well as a lone Sanderling settled beside Pulpit rock. On the ground the first Firecrest of the autumn was in the Obs garden accompanied by single figures of Spotted Flycatcher, Pied Flycatcher, Willow Warbler, Reed Warbler and Blackcap. The warm, clear afternoon saw an influx of insectivores with a mixed hirundine flock over the Bill Common of Swallows, Sand and House Martins being joined by 14 Swifts. Elsewhere on the island, Reap Lane harboured a single Pied Flycatcher and two Whinchats, whilst Bowers Quarry saw those totals and raised them a Lesser Whitethroat; a Short-eared Owl was also at Barleycrates Lane. Four Balearic Shearwaters and 2 Arctic Skuas passed through on the sea at the Bill.

The Wood Sandpiper was sufficiently high in the clear, blue sky that although clearly audible to several birders in different spots around the Bill nobody actually managed to clap eyes on it; several calls were also picked up by the nocmig recorders at the Obs that had been left running well after dawn:

And by way of comparison, here's a Green Sandpiper recorded over the Obs a few nights ago: