Barnacle geese ready to head south
The experience of migration was typified when a Lanceolated Warbler was found at Boddam the other day. Many people on hands and knees peered through a fence as the warbler moved up and down a few feet away, but on one occasion it was videoed walked over some ones boot then another person's hand. You could only get this happening in Shetland.
While many birds moved on at the beginning of the week leaving a few birders frustrated, new ones started to arrive and i saw a flock of Barnacle geese (77) flying south, always a great sight. Looking over to Scatness seconds later i could see a larger flock (over 407) an impressive number for Shetland.
The Barnacles gathered on short vegetation towards the headland, they were very noisy but i got very close by using a bank to hide behind, even when i stood up to get a photo (200 mm lens) they didn't take off. A passing Merlin spooked them and they all took off joining another flock who must have been feeding higher up near the cliffs
It was good to meet Steve Minton at Scatness who has made this his patch and turns up some impressive birds and moth's. Again it shows the value of looking at an area on a regular basis.
It was moving ok and stretched its wings several times, the plan was to see whether it would fly from the boat when it went out again 1/2 hour later. Hope so very impressive bird- note the webbed feet
Levenwick quarry held a flighty Little Bunting, it surprising how easily a bird can disappear into a small area of vegetation. Down at Maywick the Red Breasted Fly had gone with only Blackcap, Goldcrest and Chiffchaff present.
At Quendale I met up again with the Welsh birders who yesterday had found a River Warbler up at the dam. No sign today, but Yellow Browed warblers (3) Goldcrest and a Chiffchaff showed with a Grey Wagtail on the burn
I found a stranded Juvenile Gannet down at the point of Grutness, it didn't seem injured and came to rest on a grassy bank , no doubt waiting for the tide to come in.