24 Oct 2016

Fair Isle 2016. Part 1

After an enjoyable change from our usual autumn trip to Shetland in 2015, when we went to Fair Isle, we decided to do the same this year! Consequently Mark P, Chris G F Fearn and myself found ourselves at Tingwall airport for the short flight to Fair Isle on the 13th October.

Being met by the Obs warden, David Parnaby, the first priority was to go down the island to Deryck Shaw's place where a Pine Bunting had been hanging out feeding with House Sparrows, Yellowhammers and Brambling. This was a lifer for Chris and Mark and neither Fred or I had seen one for quite awhile. David kindly dropped us off and took our bags back to the Obs.

Sure enough it wasn't long before the female Pine Bunting shoed itself on Derycks drive.

A couple of days later we were lucky enough to be close to Derycks when he caught and ringed it so we had the opportunity to see it in the hand. I also had the chance of ringing a couple of Bramblings that Deryck had caught at the same time.

Unbelievably a few days later a 2nd Pine Bunting was found and then a 3rd.

Although not really a ringing trip I was able to do some ringing at the Obs - most of the birds were the more common migrants expected at this time of year and included Blackcaps, Bramblings, Redpools, thrushes, Robins, Chiffchaffs and Goldcrests but I was fortunate enough to ring a few new species! Including this beautiful female Hawfinch and a Woodcock!

Above: Water Rail caught and ringed.

 Above: Waxwing caught and ringed.
Above: Long-tailed Duck caught and ringed.

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