May 9th   Leave a comment

The conditions are good for migration, but not for rare migrants. The whimbrels have moved on from Balcomie, today was the first day in weeks without seeing one. There were three northern wheatears on Balcomie Beach, and one more at Kilminning, and now two spotted flycatchers (possibly three) at upper Kilminning. I can imagine all of these were UK birds, on their way to the northwest of Scotland. The now resident migrants were very busy this morning: a lot of song from common whitethroats, willow warblers, sedge warblers and blackcaps, and even a chiffchaff at the Patch. It does seem to be a good year for the resident migrants but then the weather is great, I am out every day and of course, any normal Saturday at Kilminning is all go-karts or boy racer noise rather than warbler song. As I came back through Denburn a tawny owl flew across the path being chased by two angry carrion crows. It dived into the cover of a bush but was soon moved on by some blackbirds. Tawny owls try to sit quietly and inconspicuously during the day but none of the other birds want them around and frequently mob them. Tawny owls are little threat during the day but are a real terror at night. A little bit of investment in moving on a tawny owl is like buying some insurance. Not that it will work well in Denburn, where the nesting pair is not really going anywhere, no matter now difficult the local small birds make it for them to snooze quietly.

A nesting willow warbler at the Patch, Fife Ness this morning,
and one of the two spotted flycatchers now at Kilminning

Posted May 9, 2020 by wildcrail in Sightings

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