The weather continued to be uncharacteristically 'summery' on Shetland & we spent many hours eagerly notching up more and more garden ticks in our new Lerwick garden! The list now stands at a modest 54. . . . . 1st October started incredibly well with not 1 but 3 Hawfinch appearing in the Hawthorn tree before breakfast followed by a Yellow-browed Warbler and then a Barred Warbler - not a bad start and above our Autumn hopes of what the garden might produce! However the best was yet to come on the 2nd with a very brief appearance of an Olive-backed Pipit on the freshly mowed lawn thanks to Chas & Alan who saw it drop in from the living room window! Chas later had an OBP at Helendale & Phil & I had a smart Citrine Wagtail overhead during a walk about or new 'Lerwick circuit'. Later that evening we also had presumably the same bird over the garden . . .taking our garden list to dizzy rarity heights we had not anticipated. It just makes us think . . . what else is to come!!? and if we are getting these birds in one Lerwick garden, what's dropping in or passing through so many others . . .
A trip to Bressay on Sunday morning produced 8 Yellow-browed Warblers. We dipped the Alpine Swift on several occasions but caught up with the Isabelline Shrike at Levenwick with 2 Yellow-browed Warblers nearby. We are now on Fair Isle staying with Hollie & Deryk at Burkle along with Micky Maher - it's great to be back!. The flight in was touch and go with increasing winds and driving rain but somehow we did make it in, even though it was the rockiest Fair Isle descent to the airstrip we've ever experienced. I photographed a very approachable Hawfinch at The Haa in the later afternoon gales but birding is pretty difficult as it standing up right now in those winds . . . .
Below are a few images from our Autumn adventures so far . . . .
Below: RIP: Siberian Blue Robin (from Foula) Hawfinch, View from North Shetland, Pallid Harrier, Rough Fair Isle sea, Grey Seal, Black-headed Bunting.