It was an East Side day today, the northerly wind in the morning was gusting too much to open nets. A walk around the island first thing did not yield too much other than the breeding Whitethroats and Sedge Warblers and migrant Spotted Flycatchers. Two Jackdaws made a nice, if modest, addition to the day list.
Herring Gull nests were counted all the way along the East Side, from the north end to Pen Cristin, 309 nests were counted, the vast majority of which had three eggs. Only one chick had fully emerged, but quite a few eggs were just about to hatch with the egg tooth showing through the shell.
The first Shag chicks were recorded, still very small and bald, many are yet to hatch at this point so we are still in the early stages. Puffin, Razorbill, and Guillemot eggs were recorded, too. Here on Bardsey, we don’t have the luxury of keeping an eye on our breeding seabirds on a day-to-day basis and have to record data all at once on day-long visits to the colonies.
The main reason for the visit was to check the Chough nests, both of the nests that were checked contained chicks that were only a few days old, so we have a couple of weeks before they will be ringed. At least one pair appears to have failed this year.
In other news, the Woodchat Shrike was not recorded today.
Birds today: three Gannets, one Buzzard, two Whimbrels, one Whimbrel, eight Turnstones, ten Sedge Warblers, five Whitethroats, four Blackcaps, five Spotted Flycatchers, two Jackdaws, four Siskins and nine Lesser Redpolls.