Nov 122006

A first record for Britain, what a bird.I doubt if anyone would have predicted this species as a potential addition to the British List?

Photographs of this bird were originally posted to the internet as a Little Auk, on Tuesday 7th November. The bird was subsequently identified from the photos and when the news finally came out, that a Long-billed Murrelet had beens seen off the coast of Devon, 4 days previously, albeit hearts sank! Unbelievably, the bird was relocated on Saturday 11th November and on Sunday 12th November, I witnessed the largest “twitch” for many years. Golden-winged Warbler springs to mind.
Long-billed Murrelet – Brachyramphus perdix – Dawlish Warren, Devon – 12th November 2004
The species originates from the Pacific Coast of Siberia. Very little is known of this species and precious little is known of it’s breeding biology. Very few nests have ever been found, despite the fact that they occur in thousands on the sea.
They lay a single egg on a bare branch or on the ground and the nest site is usually located some twenty miles inland. Murrelets seem to have a small life span only living for 2-3 years. Note the distinctive head shape and length of bill compared to other Murrelet species that 
show white scapular patches. The bird is in first year/winter plumage. As an adult nonbreeding plumaged bird, it would show an all black nape and would lack the mottling on the lower neck and flanks.The bird shows a distinctive split orbital eye-ring and lacks any sign of a white collar. Long and slender wings, which were fluttered and held sharply back prior to diving. The bird would drift far out to sea, sometimes so far out that it was lost to view. It would then fly close inshore to feed and during this time gave stunning views but was very active and constantly diving. It made digi-scoping very difficult.


Oct 212006
Moth Trapping on St. Agnes 2006 - 14th - 21st Oct 2006

The Isles of Scilly are recognised as one of the best places in Great Britain for recording migrant moths and in 2006 it was one of the best years on record. A permanent Moth Recording Station has been located at the Longstones Cafe now for a number of years and Mick Scott is trapping almost continuously during the year. Many new species to the islands and to Britain have been caught here over the years. Near perfect conditions prevailed throughout the week. we have southerly to south easterly winds, light rain and very warm air temperatures for the time of year. We trapped on 6 […]

Oct 182006
A new moth species for Britain - Trapped - St. Mary’s, Isles of Scilly - October 18th 2006

Mick Scott trapped a Pyralid species at Longstone’s, St. Mary’s, Isles of Scilly on 18th October 2006. He initially thought that it was a Grass Webworm species – possibly Herpetogramma centrostrigalis or licarsisalis (1406, 1406a), however the group are notoriously difficult to identify and therefore caution was required as to a positive ID. The species licarsisalis had been recorded in Britain before in 1998 on Tresco, Isles of Scilly (12.10.01) & on the Lizard, Cornwall in October 2004. The specimen arrived at a time of high migrant moth activity across the islands. I was fortunate to photograph the moth during the day of 19th October 2006. […]

Sep 182006
Glossy Ibis - First in Derbyshire since 1923 - 18th September 2006

An ibis species was flushed from Nadin’s flash on the morning of 17th September 2006 by a local birder. However it was unfortunately not confidently identified and was put out on the Pager Network as a possible Glossy Ibis. (Puna Ibis had not been eliminated). The bird flew off strongly to the North and was not seen again during the day. The finder visited the site at dusk and watched the bird return to roost. On the morning of the 18th, 3 local birders and myself visited the site at 07:45hrs and at 07:50 we had relocated the bird and confirmed the ID as a […]

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