Tuesday, 18 April 2017

Angle coast (a.m.) Canaston (p.m.)

A coastal walk between Freshwater West and West Angle this morning provided confirmation of the presence of resident chough and peregrine at expected locations. A colour-ringed chough near Sheep Island was unfamiliar but, frustratingly, views were always too distant to confirm the combination so this one needs further scrutiny.

Along the coast there were at least half a dozen common whitethroats in full song in usual expected breeding places plus a couple of grasshopper warblers. Wheatears were also seen in various expected locations. Three common sandpipers flew into the rocky shore at West Pickard.

Swallow passage was steady this morning though not so strong as it was along the Castlemartin coast on Saturday and Sunday when a few hundred birds were seen coming in off the sea in a couple of hours (plus house martins). A very pale female merlin was also hunting pipits and linnets along the Range coast on Saturday.  Kestrels were not seen this morning on the Angle coast but were noted to be back at usual sites in the Manorbier/Lydstep area during visits over the last few days.

This afternoon we spent a couple of hours looking at and listening hard to woodland birds in Canaston. Pairs of goldcrests were on territory, some feeding amongst the ivy. Unfortunately we drew a blank with regard to firecrests recently reported there.

Territorial tree pipits were in a usual open clear-fell glade. We didn't see or hear any wood warblers this afternoon but didn't have time to visit nearby Minwear (another area favoured by this species).