News broke of a Hermit Thrush on 29/10/2013 at Porthgwarra. After work I drove down to Exeter where we stayed the night. We left Exeter at 5am and arrived at Porthgwarra just after 7am. After an anxious two hour plus wait it was eventually seen. I saw it several times over the next few hours and even managed to get a couple of poor photo’s. We then went to Marazion to see a White Rumped Sandpiper. By this time the weather had started to deteriorate and it was dull and raining, my excuse for some more poor photos. We also managed a trip to Lands End. We stayed the night in Penzance. The next day we went to see Godrevy Lighthouse and visited Kenidjack Valley.
26/10/2013 – A trip to Kent to try and see the Two Barred and Parrot Crossbills at Hemsted Forest 3 miles East of Cranbrook. In dull and fairly windy conditions I managed to see the Two Barred Crossbill after a couple of hours wait. No Parrot Crossbills were seen. We then went to Dungeness which is always an interesting if slightly weird place to visit.
A day in Hampshire to see the Semipalmated Plover at Black Point, Hayling Island. It flew in and was on view at Black Point for a few minutes but was disturbed by a windsurfer and flew off with the other waders. It was relocated on the main beach at Hayling Island but it was raining heavily by this time. Also seen today was the Red Breasted Goose at Sturt Pond, Milford on Sea and the Long Billed Dowitcher at Butt’s Lagoon, Keyhaven Marshes.
A nice week on Scilly. As usual plenty of interest with some nice weather as well. The best birds were Sora, Purple Heron, Arctic Warbler, Bluethroat, Richards Pipit, Red Breasted Flycatcher, Short Toed Lark, Wryneck and Yellow Browed Warbler. Other good birds were a very approachable Snow Bunting, Lapland Buntings, Jack Snipes, Firecrest and a Spotted Crake. Balearic Shearwaters and a Bonxie were seen on the Scillionian crossings as well as lots of Common Dolphin, Harbour Porpoise and a Basking Shark. Some interesting moths were seen, Convolvulus and Death’s Head Hawkmoth and a Scarce Blackneck. I also saw a “scilly shrew”.