Friday 16th October 2020

Lesser Redpoll

With a scattering of transatlantic and eastern vagrants in western Europe and high numbers of Yellow-browed Warblers reported from Shetland to Land’s End, I was cautiously optimistic this morning. Unfounded optimism as it turned out. Crests and YBW being conspicuous by their absence. There were good numbers of Chiffchaffs though, including the first returning bird of the winter, and today’s highlight was the first Lesser Redpoll I have ringed at SML. Six Redwing and a single Fieldfare were feeding on berries in the hedgerows but were extremely mobile and avoided the nets. In the end I reached a respectable total of 52 birds of 13 species, 47 of which were new: 1 Blackbird, 1 Blackcap, 4 Blue Tit, 1 Cetti’s Warbler, 31 Chiffchaff, 1 Dunnock, 1 Goldcrest, 3 Great Tit, 1 Great spotted Woodpecker, 1 Lesser Redpoll, 3 Meadow Pipit, 1 Song Thrush and 3 Wren.

Friday 9th October 2020

I squeezed in a few hours this morning before the weather deteriorated again. I wasn’t expecting much as persistent north-westerly winds are the least productive direction on the south coast during autumn.  It was very quiet with only 24 birds of 8 species trapped, 17 of which were new. The highlight was three new Cetti’s Warblers, all female. Totals:  1 Blackcap, 3 Blue Tit, 3 Cetti’s Warbler, 8 Chiffchaff, 1 Great Tit, 1 Meadow Pipit, 3 Robin, 4 Wren.