Topical Mega Bird News at the moment is the trapping on Fair Isle, Shetland in the early hours of this morning, Wednesday 7th August 2013, of a second Swinhoe's Petrel. The first for Fair Isle was heard only a week ago, calling overnight on 21st – 22nd July 2013 and then, remarkably, trapped on 27th July 2013, that certainly got pulses racing. These are the first confirmed records of this species in Britain since one was trapped in 2000 at Cove harbour, North East Scotland and one was seen 9 miles off the Isles of Scilly on a pelagic on 21st July 2005. Then prior to those records, the famous female that returned to Tynemouth for five successive summers between 1990-1994.
I managed to see this bird on 24th July 1994 and thanks to the hospitality of the Tynemouth ringers, many birders at that time, that were prepared to make regular visits to the Petrel ringing sessions during July, were eventually rewarded with stunning views of this enigmatic bird. A major addition to any British List.
Swinhoe's Petrel – female – Tynemouth 24th July 1994. – Tony Davison©