24th August 2015

Wryneck (Mark Pearson) - extraordinarily, this bird was latest of at least seven so far this month

Wryneck (Mark Pearson) – extraordinarily, this bird is latest of at least seven so far this month

With promising conditions (both overnight and during daylight hours) and good coverage of the area throughout the day, the recent purple patch continued to prevail, and was arguably at its most impressive so far today. A combination of various scarcities and large numbers of commoner migrants contributed to a memorable day of early autumn east coast birding at its finest.

Red-backed Shrike (Dan Lombard)

Red-backed Shrike (Dan Lombard)

A succession of headliners were uncovered amongst the waves of new arrivals, with a Wood Warbler (less than annual here) in the orchard, a male Red-backed Shrike (new for the year) at the Tip, at least two Icterine Warblers in the Top Scrub (later trapped) and at the Blue Dolphin respectively, and last but not least, two new Wrynecks – fantastically, both of which were watched arriving – at the Tip and Carr Naze respectively (MJP, GD, NCt, DL et al).

Icterine Warbler, Blue Dolphin (John Harwood)

Icterine Warbler, Blue Dolphin (John Harwood)

The best of the rest included an outstanding 62 Pied Flycatchers, 75 Willow Warblers, 11 Redstarts, 12 Wheatears, nine Spotted Flycatchers, 16 Yellow Wagtails, twelve Whinchats, ten Blackcaps, 15 Garden Warblers, three Lesser Whitethroats, eight Common Whitethroats, three Reed Warblers, two Tree Pipits, a Fieldfare, two Marsh Harriers and two Short-eared Owls.

Marsh Harrier (Mark Pearson)

Marsh Harrier (Mark Pearson)

Icterine Warbler

Visible migration was almost constant, with plenty of waders and other species on the move overhead, including one (or perhaps two) Wood Sandpipers, five Common Sandpipers (with three on the Brigg), three Green Sandpipers, 24 Whimbrel, five Greenshank, nine Curlew, five Ringed Plovers, four Golden Plovers, 12 Redshank, a Bonxie and 65 Teal. 130 Common Terns and 28 Sandwich Terns were on the Brigg, while the pick of (many) migratory insects today was a Red-veined Darter on North Cliff (DL). A Little Stint was at the Dams this morning (JH).

Red-veined Darter, North Cliff (Dan Lombard)

Red-veined Darter, North Cliff (Dan Lombard)