Bluethroats are small birds that are not so distantly related to Robins. They breed in Scandinavia. They do not breed in Britain but they are a scarce spring migrant along the east coast. The Isle of May sees this species almost annually. The males have a lovely 'cornflower blue' throat with a red spot in the middle.
I missed the bird that Mark saw but on Saturday morning I was going over to pick the luggage up for the Bird Observatory. I saw a plump bird with a short tail and a strong facial pattern jump out of a ditch. A Bluethroat! The bird ran around feeding quickly and was very difficult to photograph. It flew away towards the main light and disappeared. I proceeded to go down to the Lowlightlight and when I got to Horse Hole and the same happened. Another female Bluethroat! And I had not even got off the quadbike!
The Bluethroats skulks behind a rock
A different bird was ringed in the afternoon
Out in the open enjoying the early evening sunshine
Later in the evening I was escorting our new volunteer Lucie to the Lighthouse . On our way back I found a female Red-backed Shrike. Another scarce migrant to the east coast. We enjoyed watching the bird catching flies and flying from stalk to stalk. Then the ringers caught it.
A female Yellow Wagtail dropped in to add more colour to the proceedings.
There were a lot of common migrants to see. Those lucky enough to be out on the boat on Sunday were treated to a selection of these birds including one regular who was delighted by not only seeing but photographing his first Bluethroat.