May 4th   2 comments

There was some light drizzle last night with still prevailing (although swirling) easterlies so I got my hopes up again this morning. Straight out from Crail, past the airfield, a northern wheatear flew up from the side of the road – a very good sign. But apart from another wheatear on the shore at Sauchope on the way back, I didn’t find any obvious new migrants at Kilminning, Balcomie or the Patch at Fife Ness. Still lots of whimbrels, whitethroats and sedge warblers though. I am really enjoying the whimbrels this year – they at least are free to move around.

A wheatear to raise my hopes this morning

My daily route takes me back into Crail via the top of Roome Bay and this morning I saw at least six sand martins flying closely together around the drain pipes they like to nest in some years. I should think they are definitely breeding this year. Sand martins are very promiscuous and so when a female is laying, the male follows very closely to keep an eye on it. I saw a lot of this close tail chasing this morning. I wondered whether the reason they might be nesting this year, and that they only nest in Roome Bay occasionally, is because we have had such a dry April. The drain pipes they nest in must be nice and dry and so much more appealing. There was also a house martin there – they nest along Roome Bay Avenue and feed over the grass bordering the beach – and plenty of barn swallows. With the swifts back, Roome Bay now is the best place to easily see all three swallow species and the look alike swifts, to get your eye in.  

The sand martin nesting site at Roome Bay – in the drainage pipes in the concrete wall
Sand martin nesting in Roome Bay in 2011 (JA)

Posted May 4, 2020 by wildcrail in Sightings

2 responses to “May 4th

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  1. Hello.I wanted to identify a little bird small as sparrow. More delicate..Once seen this week on the telegraph pole , top of Bruce’s Wynd, Pittenweem. Orange beak . Definite black circle round face then encircled with white. Possible yellowness flying off. singing it’s precious head off.

    Patricia MacGeachy

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