October 11th   Leave a comment

There were easterly winds all day yesterday and they became quite strong overnight. There was a haar first thing but still with a strong south-easterly wind. A change in the weather at last and although it has made a murky and damp day today, it has brought some birds in at last. I found a yellow-browed warbler at the top of Kilminning almost immediately I arrived – I was trying to track down a calling chiff-chaff and then picked up the yellow-brow that was with it. Quite a dull bird and I thought of Hume’s Warbler – the even more eastern, rarer version of a yellow-brow. It had dark legs and a subdued back pattern consistent with Humes, although two clear wing bars and the yellow bill base of a yellow-browed almost certainly made it wishful thinking. I waited for it to call to clinch it but it remained silent. Great views though and I am glad to have caught up with one at last this year – an autumn without a yellow-browed warbler in Crail is unthinkable. I heard another one calling a bit later from the garden of the ruined cottage at Balcomie and also met a birder who had seen one at Craighead. So there are a few about at last.

Yellow-browed warbler – here at last

There were other birds that had been brought in. Probably 20 or so bramblings around Kilminning (the first of the winter), 50 or so redwings and lots of blackbirds and song thrushes. The Patch at Fife Ness had goldcrests and redwings but I didn’t find anything else of note. The haar cleared a bit by late morning so I sat at Fife Ness for a few minutes before the rain set in. A great northern diver flew by as close as they ever get, just along the edge of the rocks. When you see them close up you realise what a monster they are – as big as a cormorant, and with their huge flappy feet, making them seem even bigger.

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Posted October 11, 2018 by aboutcrail in Sightings

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