After a fruitless morning walking into work, in grey, cool and windy conditions, it was all change on the walk back home. The sun was out and it was warm, although the NW wind was still blowing, but I didn't mind that wind as it had brought me a new species for the year to my patch, a fantastic WHINCHAT (98, 73) it was waiting for me on a fence post at Migrant Alley :-) . I always hope for this species to come through Migrant Alley, and most years I get one, maybe two, so i'm pleased to add this dapper little migrant to my year list, which is just two short of my target of 100 now.
I rushed home to get my camera, and after a bite to eat went out to see if I could photograph the Whinchat. I found it where I had left it, and got some acceptable images of it, but how surprised was I when I looked along the fenceline and saw a WHEATEAR, two little migrants on the same day, this is quite an event for my patch ! I took a distant photo of it, then sat down at a discreet distance to enjoy the birds.
Over at the Greenhouse Complex a KESTREL was hunting, and was being mobbed by a gang of SWALLOWS, as they broke of the game, they swooped down low over the sheep pasture and I was well pleased to see a SAND MARTIN (74) in with them, 3 migrants in the same day, one a year tick and two new for the month, this was a good afternoon :-) Unfortunately, I had to break off early as I had a dentist appointment, typical, I felt sure I was on for something even better to come along :-)
98 species for the year list is tantalisingly close to my 100 target for the year, and is in joint 4th place for the 9 years of recording - so far. The 74 species for the month is running all over the previous best August tally of 70, in fact this August has been the 3rd best month ever for species seen!
Above and below a fantastic Whinchat