View Full Version : Winter visitors

28-Sep-07, 22:32
Have noted the geese being spotted, Pink Footed I believe, when do any other species and the swans start arriving?
Would also like to hear any reports of Fieldfares, Redwings coming across in any numbers as they are a very good indicator of what the weather might do.
Any information would be much appreciated.

10-Oct-07, 17:42
Heard a flock of whoopers over the House last night around 10pm. My first of the year, although a few have been seen around this last week. No idea on number but there would have been quite a few considering the racket they were making 5-10 maybe.

I know some good migrating birds have been seen. Julian Smith had 2 Lesser scaup (males); 1 Ring-necked duck (male); Greater scaup 70+; Barnacle goose 121 in 5 flights; Gadwall 28 plus Black tern (juv) all on St. John's loch on Sunday.

The Robins are singing nearly everywhere you go in the county as well, although they have been here for a while.

10-Oct-07, 19:19
Got my first Greenland white-fronts (32) of the autumn on Loch of Mey this morning. Four Horned (Slavonian) Grebe on St. John's Loch.

A few stragglers from the summer around too with a Wheatear at Calder mid-day.

12-Oct-07, 00:59
Slovonian Grebes..GRRRR.....many thanks to both of you for the reports and please keep them coming. I'm a bit of a weather freak and the times that the birds choose to arrive can often be a good indicator of how the weather will pan out through the winter.

13-Oct-07, 10:29
so what are your predictions for this winter????

13-Oct-07, 22:40
Might be able to form a better conclusion with a little more information, down here there seem to be more berries than usual and the resident birds are eating ravenously so early indications are that either we are going to get a cold snap in the next few weeks or even a longer spell.
The swifts and the swallows were away about two to three weeks ahead of their normal schedule.
If I get to sight a fieldfare or a redwing then I know we're in trouble.

13-Oct-07, 22:52
Hi Lizz

You can keep us all updated. I would love nothing moe than a proper winter.

I di not see a fieldfare but did see at least 10 Redwing this morning at work, right on the North coast. They obviously arrived overnight as they have not been there this week.

16-Oct-07, 20:26
Had Barnacle geese, Pale-bellied Brent Geese, Whooper Swans, Slovanian Grebe and an adult Glaucous Gull from the house today.
The Greylags have been flying in this evening too.

46 Whooper swans on Scrabster loch this evening.

Heard of:-

4 Slavonians on St. Johns Loch/pool plus fieldfares, bramblings and Crossbill and a fly past Common scoter

Grey Phalarope; Pom skua and possible Sabine's gull in Dunnet.

16-Oct-07, 22:16
Good to hear that the birds are arriving in numbers but are they ahead of the normal shedule?
Looking out to the north and east of Europe it's already showing signs of an early winter.

16-Oct-07, 22:59
It is pretty much the same as last year. However I do remember Late October 2005 when there was an invasion of birds such as waxwings, finches and thrushes from the continent. Then by Late November teperatures on the continent plumeted to as low as -40 (I think) in eastern europe.

www.birdforum.net (http://www.birdforum.net) is a good forum for finding out about up to date bird movements.

19-Oct-07, 18:43
More Whooper swans and Greylag geese flew in this morning between 1 and 2 am.

Then this morning I got my first Long-tailed ducks at work and another 8 in Thurso bay this evening. One of my favourite birds.:Razz

19-Oct-07, 22:16
Don't know if this counts as winter visitors, but I counted 58 swans in a field today.

19-Oct-07, 22:28
Yeh it does as swans in a field are normally the Whoopers swans which have just arrived from Iceland for the winter. Thats a really good number, I thought 46 was good. Keep an eye out to see if they hang around.:):)

20-Oct-07, 13:20
Swans still in the field today. There seems to be quite a number of cygnets among them, going by the colour of the feathers. Dont think the farmer will be impressed, as its a field of stubble.

21-Oct-07, 15:39
Scunner where your swans in a field between Halkirk and Calder as I saw 58 there today.

I also saw 86 Whooper Swans in a field at Greenland including a neckbanded one which could have been Fiachra from the project below. He was near Loch Heilen last night according to the website.


8 Great Northern Divers were in Dunnet bay yesterday, along with plenty of Long-tailed ducks.

I saw 81 Greenland White fronted geese at Loch of mey along with hundreds of Greylags and Pinkfeet Geese.
2 of these had neckbands which allows me to see some of their movement history.

There was also hundreds of Greylags between Westfield and Shebster today.

A Slovanian Grebe on Loch Calder today.

21-Oct-07, 19:58
Great link, Kas, thanks for posting!:D

28-Oct-07, 21:39
At least 3-400 Fieldfare near Stempster this afternoon, there is also a lot of Blackbirds in the county. 152 Whoopers at St Johns.

28-Oct-07, 22:45
The swans have now been joined by geese.

29-Oct-07, 02:01
Looks like it could be a hard winter folk.

29-Oct-07, 18:23
It could be but that was said this time 2 years in 2005. Britian was invaded by finches, thrushes, waxwings etc, and it was said we were in for a hard winter. Yet it was the continent that has a really harsh winter. Hence the reasons the birds came over here. Whilst we had a mild one. Who knows we will have to wait and see, although I do hope we get lots of frosty mornings and some good snow.

29-Oct-07, 23:16
Heard and saw my first skein of Geese this far south today.

30-Oct-07, 00:08
Reports of a high influx of siskins in the county.
Here is an article like one in Saturdays P&J about the siskin influx and the weather for you LIZZ.


31-Oct-07, 00:05
Just had an update from Reykavik..it's already snowing there, temps abnormally cold.
No wonder the geese are headed south as fast as their wings will carry them.

31-Oct-07, 00:11
Have noted the geese being spotted, Pink Footed I believe, when do any other species and the swans start arriving?
Would also like to hear any reports of Fieldfares, Redwings coming across in any numbers as they are a very good indicator of what the weather might do.
Any information would be much appreciated.
Hi Lizz
For the first time since we moved to Shebster 29 yrs ago I saw a flock of fieldfares , from my kitchen window yesterday ( Sun 29 th Oct). I've checked with the RSPB site and confirmed that they are Fieldfares. Approx 30 birds landed in the field behind the house, some even sat in the trees in the garden so I did get a good look at them. Fab birdies - I did think from a distance that they were thrushes as I said previously I've never seen one before let alone out here at Shebster and in such numbers.

31-Oct-07, 01:27
Thanks for the report anneoctober..some fieldfares live in the north, we saw a small flock over to Srathalladale when up in September and they must be indigenous.. but when they flock in from eastern europe in winter they sue are a sight to see.
Yes they are members of the thrush family.

05-Dec-07, 23:33
Notice the reports of Fieldfares, any sightings of Redwings?

30-Jan-08, 21:18
Very few updates of late appart from the fantastic pictures of the cranes by Kas.
Have all the winter migrants gone further south this year?