Monday, 5 October 2009

Blyth's Reed Warbler
Fair Isle - 5th October 2009
Our last day on Fair Isle turned out to be the most productive birding day we had encountered for our entire visit! A Blyth's Reed Warbler was found by Alan & Chas in the crop strip at Lower Stoneybrek first thing before they departed on the plane at the end of their Autumn trip. I photographed this bird out in the field & it was later trapped & ringed to confirm the ID. There were clearly many more migrants about with a Reed Warbler (trapped & ringed) at the Chalet, many Redwing & a few Blackcaps, Lesser Whitethroat, Brambling etc in the light SW'ly winds & sunshine - a beautiful day. Whilst looking for the Blyth's Reed Warbler at Lower Stoney with several others including the 2 AW's & Deryk who had arrived post Sheephill, a Warbler jumped up onto the wall briefly in front of us. We all raised our bins expecting to see the Blyth's Reed Warbler but were amazed to suddenly be staring at a cracking RIVER WARBLER!!! What an fine, classic, streaky individual, fully out in the open & facing us, it's tail flicked up showing a great profile before it darted into the crops & remained illusive thereafter. A fantastic British tick for Phil & I & a great bird to end our Fair Isle trip with. After grilling the Eastern Savi's Warbler in Da Water the day before (my second on Fair Isle), it was a real treat to see both a classic River & a Eastern Savi's & the various differences between these two often difficult individuals.

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