Friday, 10 May 2013

Shetland Sub-Alpine warbler

Its amazing how good some people's ID skills have developed. Only the other year while we were visiting Unst we went to Skaw to see a Sub-alpine warbler. With no one else about we watched the bird for about 1/2 hour where it collected nest material to build a nest in a spearmint patch next to the stream.

 On several occasions it sang. We had great views and it was only when we returned home we discovered that someone had recognise the call as that of an Italian Sub- alpine warbler, amazing!!. This then was a Moltoni's Sub-alpine warbler, the first to be recorded in Britain.

Often Shetland has a Mediterranean feel with birds you would expect to be sunning it further south. We have had good views of Golden Orioles at the woodlands of Kergord and Halligarth on a number of occasions. Bee-eaters up at Vidlin, which looked totally out of place with Shetland sheep walking past. Red backed Shrikes, which have bred in the southern mainland of Shetland, Marsh warblers on a number of occasions and Bluethroat , one of my favourite birds.

This all adds to the excitement with birds appearing from all points, within a few hours you could be watching birds from America, the Artic, eastern Europe or the Med

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