Monthly report August 2021
General: coverage and weather
Highest temperature was 21.7 degC (6th), and lowest was 11.0 degC (4th). Total rainfall was 70.6mm (normal 115.4mm). Most rainfall in one day was 16.2mm (9th). Highest wind speed was 19.3 m/s (25th). A total of 82 different species were reported versus 71 in August 2020
Four different species during August is below par, in a normal good month for raptors. Sparrowhawk were noted from the 28th and Kestrel with singles on the 10th and 22nd. White-tailed Eagle were reported with singles from the 5th, and then two from the 28th til the end of the month. There were also a few reports of the local Peregrine Falcons.
Dry weather and winds from the north west meant a poor month for birds in the category. There were no good days for seabird passage and moderate numbers of waders from trips out to Spannholmane during the month. A juvenile Shelduck was on Spannholmane on the 6th.
Five Bar-tailed Godwit arrived at Skare and Hovland on the 8th and increased to seven between the 9th and 11th, reducing to five on the 12th. A Black-tailed Godwit sped south over Tuevågen on the 11th.
Waders from various visits to Spannholmane – Lausingen between the 6th and 28th resulted in Knot (three to five), Turnstone (three to 20), Sanderling (four to 13), Dunlin (two to 10) and Purple Sandpiper (15 to 25). A Spotted Redshank was there on th 8th and a Little Stint on the 28th.
Otherwise Ruff were only noted with singles between the 8th and 13th. Maximum numbers of Green Sandpiper were 18 on the 8th and Redshank 30 on the 5th. A Wood Sandpiper was at Hålandsmarkje between the 5th and 8th, singles at Tuevågen on the 9th and a night passage bird over Skare on the 17th.
Two Puffin were on Spannholmane on the 6th and a single Sooty Shearwater was on passage on the 14th.
There were good numbers of passage Swifts with a record 95 birds on the 8th and a new maximum of 142 the following day.
Warblers and flycatchers were mostly absent during the persistent north west winds. The Blyth’s Reed Warbler breeders in Herberg were noted until the 3rd, and then 2 1st year birds were ringed in Merkeskogen on the 6th and then one of these was reported from the football pitch at Hovland. A Thrush Nightingale paid a brief visit to Sjoarskogen on the 8th.
July resulted in a few different adult Rosy Starlings. There was new influx of adults with a female on the 12th, new male on the 13th, female-type 21st and a male on the 22nd to 23rd, the majority of which were from the Nordvik area. Common Crossbills flocks numbered five on the 5th and three on the 7th.
The weather did not allow much ringing, nevertheless there were five days of activity in Merkeskogen with a total of 96 birds being ringed of 18 different species. The best day was the 12th with 27 birds. Goldcrest (5), Willow Warbler (5) and Meadow Pipit (4) were the most numerous.
The most notable ringing records were the two young Blyth’s Reed Warbler (most probably from the breeding success in Herberg in June/July). Last year resulted in 59 ringed birds of 14 species during four days of ringing.
Three new species for the year were recorded in the month: Shelduck (6th), Spotted Redshank and Ruff (8th).
Thrush Nightingale was the third autumn record for Utsira. The species is not annual either, the last in June 2021 and May before that.