9th September

A day that started with unremarkable numbers of migrants ended with a little flourish to once again prove that packing up the nets early is ill advised in September. The forecasted overnight cloud cover never materialized, therefore the early morning was once again characterized by high-flying migrants that proved increasingly difficult to see. Wagtails stole the show at first with 43 Grey and 50 Yellow, overshadowing the relatively poor showing of 52 Siskin. Ringing was relatively slow with just a smattering of grounded migrants (most of whom avoided the nets with unerring ease), including singles of Spotted and Pied Flycatcher and the first date this season with equal numbers of Willow Warblers and Chiffchaffs. The afternoon provided the days highlight with only the eleventh Kingfisher trapped in the garden. Elsewhere on the island, a Dartford Warbler was at Nicodemus' Knob.

If we get a Kingfisher at the Bill - and these days that isn't even an annual event - it's usually in late August/early September so one today wasn't a huge surprise; what was much more noteworthy was that today's bird was trapped in the Obs garden - the last time that happened was 18 years ago! This tendency to move towards the coast for the winter generates one of the explanations as to why the German name for Kingfisher is Eisvogel - literally, ice-bird - since the lakes and streams in the mountains freeze and the birds are forced to move towards the coast; a rather more prosaic interpretation is that they are 'ice' coloured or shiny - Eisan - but we like the first explanation better © Martin Cade:

Ferrybridge is always good for generating sightings of colour-ringed waders and we've just received the details back on this Dunlin that's been about there for the last few days. It was first spotted on 2nd September and was still present there yesterday; Tony Cross has kindly let us know that it's one of his birds that was ringed on 24th August at Llanrhystud, just south of Aberystwyth in west Wales. Tony tells us it's likely to be of the race schinzii that breeeds in Scotland, Norway, Iceland and southern Greenland and will be heading for winter quarters in West Africa; after they leave Britain there have been a series of sightings of birds from this project in Spain, Portugal, Mauritania, Senegal and The Gambia © Roy Norris:

In the light of the forecast of overcast skies Nick Hopper deployed his nocmig kit at the Bill again last night. Sadly, the sky remained resolutely clear so numbers were on the low side but there was a nice highlight in the form of another Ortolan Bunting:

The night's tally otherwise consisted of just Tree Pipit 14, Robin 8, Pied Flycatcher and Spotted Flycatcher 3 each and singles of Dunlin, Common Sandpiper and Yellow Wagtail.