Fair Isle Bird Observatory & Guesthouse

Bird Observatory & Guesthouse

Following the devastating fire which completely destroyed the Obs on 10th March 2019, we have been working extremely hard towards rebuilding it.

At present, we are aiming to reopen in spring 2021 which we appreciate is a tight schedule given all the work that is involved in building ‘Obs 5’. We are determined to try and meet this target.

obs foundations
The foundations of the Obs are all that remain after clearing up after the fire, 19th July 2019. © Susannah Parnaby

We intend to post regular updates about our progress in working towards this coupled with news of the ongoing ornithological work we are carrying out.

Other topics can be selected from the 'Fire & rebuild' menu to the left.

Latest sightings



16th-20th November 2019
Weather: a northerly air flow at the start of the period, with a beautifully calm day on 19th then a stronger SSE wind on 20th. Generally sunny or overcast, but largely dry..

HIGHLIGHTS:
Iceland Gull: 1CY off Bergaroo (19th).
Glaucous Gull: 4CY in Ditfield (19th).
'Siberian Chiffchaff': one at Burkle on 16th, with Chiffchaffs unidentified to subspecies at Stackhoull (19th) and Lower Leogh (20th)
Little Auk: 2 on 19th (singles off South Light and Furse).

Other sightings (counts refer to maximum in period unless otherwise stated):
116 Greylag Goose (with a few birds seen arriving off North Light on 19th), Pink-footed Goose, Whooper Swan (the lingering adult still around Meoness), 4 Wigeon, 5 Teal, 2 Long-tailed Duck (17th), Goldeneye (South Haven, 20th), Great Northern Diver (non breeding-plumaged birds in Furse on 17th and moving north off Dronger on 19th), Grey Heron (1CY in the Haven on 16th and one north on 19th), Cormorant (the first of the month was off Buness on 19th), 3 Water Rail (singles at Obs, Barkland and Burkle), Oystercatcher, 2 Lapwing, 2 Golden Plover, Ringed Plover (the first of the month was in North Haven on 19th, a very late record), 15 Curlew, 4 Purple Sandpiper, 5 Woodcock, 10 Kittiwake, 28 Guillemot, Woodpigeon (Gully), Short-eared Owl (airstrip, 19th), 2 Merlin, Peregrine, Carrion Crow, 4 Skylark, Blackcap (female from 17th, with 2 on 19th), 22 Blackbird, 18 Fieldfare, 111 Redwing, 46 Song Thrush ((all thrush counts from 19th during Grey Seal monitoring and so represent the minimum present on the Isle on that day), Mistle Thrush (one [with missing secondaries] still on Hoini, 19th), 18 Robin (on 19th, mostly in the North and therefore representing a minimum count), Grey Wagtail (Quoy, 16th), Meadow Pipit, Chaffinch (male Barkland, 19th; first of the month), Brambling (male, still in Plantation, 16th), 10 Twite, 2 'Mealy Redpoll' (Quoy), Goldfinch (trapped at Obs, 16th), 6 Siskin (17th [one at Obs and 5 over Schoolton], with 4 scattered singles in the North on 19th), 38 Snow Bunting.

Other wildlife:
Grey Seal; a count of pups revealed the total for the year to have risen to 47

Year list: 216
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11th-15th November 2019
Weather: the wind remained in a largely NE direction, with a general pattern of cold, sunny days (increasingly with ice or frost) and a few wintry showers.

HIGHLIGHTS:
'Siberian Chiffchaff': singles on 12th (Haa) and 14th (Stackhoull).
Little Auk: 2 off South Light on 12th and 14th, with a single in North Haven on 13th.

Little Auk, North Haven, 13th November (David Parnaby)

Other sightings (counts refer to maximum in period unless otherwise stated):
69 Greylag Goose, Pink-footed Goose, 21 Wigeon, 9 Teal, Great Northern Diver (breeding-plumaged adult, South Light 15th), 'blue' Fulmar (past South Light, 14th), Hen Harrier (lingering ringtail until 12th), Water Rail (Obs), 2 Oystercatcher, 5 Lapwing, Golden Plover, 6 Purple Sandpiper, 3 Woodcock (11th, with one 13th), 34 Guillemot, Woodpigeon (Shirva), Merlin, Peregrine, Carrion Crow, 5 Skylark, Grey Wagtail (11th-12th),'White Wagtail' (Schoolton, 12th), 6 Meadow Pipit, Brambling (male, Plantation, 13th-15th), 2 Twite, 'Mealy Redpoll' (School and Quoy), 3 Goldfinch (13th), 38 Snow Bunting.

Year list: 216
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7th-10th November 2019
Weather: largely a NE wind, cold with some wintry showers, although the weekend was largely sunny and very pleasant.

HIGHLIGHTS:
'Siberian Chiffchaff': 3 on 9th and 10th.
Waxwing: one briefly at Burkle, 9th.

Other sightings (counts refer to maximum in period unless otherwise stated):
122 Greylag Goose, 5 Pink-footed Goose, 2 Whooper Swan, 18 Wigeon, 9 Teal, Hen Harrier (lingering ringtail seen daily in various places around the south of the Isle), 2 Water Rail (Stackhoull and Obs), 3 Lapwing, Woodcock (10th, Bull's Park), Merlin, 3 Carrion Crow (2 Skadan, Lerness), Blackcap (male, School, 10th), 2 Mistle Thrush (Hoini), 3 'Mealy Redpoll' (School Brae), 'North-western Redpoll' (a redpoll with the Mealies on School Brae on 9th-10th was probably one of the north-western subspecies), 82 Snow Bunting.

'Mealy Redpoll, Schoolhouse (David Parnaby)

Other wildlife:
Killer Whale: at least two seen from South Light on 7th.
Grey Seal: a survey of all known pupping beaches on 9th-10th produced a total of 31 pups (bringing the total for the year to 35).

Year list: 216
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Wednesday 6th November 2019
Weather: a calm day, with the nets hanging flat at the Obs for the first time in a while. Sunny at times, very pleasant, although cool.
Richard's last full day on the Isle saw him covering a lot of ground in the hope of adding a species or two to either his Fair Isle list of the year list. It was fairly quiet, though and, although there was always a feeling that there could be one last big bird (which perhaps ended up on North Ronaldsay instead) it wasn't to be. A beautiful day though and a good one for Richard to bow out on. Thanks for everything Richard, good luck with your new adventures.

HIGHLIGHTS:
'Siberian Chiffchaff': 5 (including two trapped and ringed in the Plantation and a calling bird at the Obs).
Waxwing: one over the Obs in the morning.
Little Auk: 5 past South Light.
Glaucous Gull:.

Other sightings:
131 Greylag Goose, 5 Pink-footed Goose, 2 Whooper Swan, 19 Wigeon, 3 Teal, 'blue' Fulmar (South Light), Sooty Shearwater (off South Light; there has been only one other November record since 1997), Hen Harrier (ringtail over Brecks), Water Rail (Burkle), 2 Golden Plover, Woodcock, 286 Kittiwake, 2 Bonxie (South Light), 63 Guillemot, Woodpigeon, Merlin, Peregrine, Brambling, 9 Siskin, 69 Snow Bunting.

Year list: 216
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Tuesday 5th November 2019
Weather: NE4-5, cool, with some brighter spells.

Sightings:
3 Whooper Swan, 15 Wigeon, Pintail (female past South Light), 2 Teal, Great Norther Diver (South Light), 2 'blue' Fulmar (South Light), 2 Water Rail (Haa and Quoy), 4 Woodcock, 2 Jack Snipe, 165 Kittiwake, Bonxie (in the North of the Isle), 12 Guillemot, Woodpigeon, Merlin, 2 Chiffchaff, 'Mealy Redpoll' (School Brae), 137 Snow Bunting.

Year list: 216
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Monday 4th November 2019
Weather: NE4-5, a little drizzle at first, but clearing to a sunny day for a while.
A few new bits in, giving a hint that there may be some more to come when the wind drops later in the week. All round rather pleasant, with planes allowing various journies to take place including the bairns getting off on a school trip.

HIGHLIGHTS:
'Siberian Chiffchaff': 2; singles at the Obs and Utra.
Waxwing: at least one 1CY on the Isle, with sightings from Stackhoull, Utra and the Obs.
Little Auk: 5 past South Light
Glaucous Gull: 2; 3CY flew up the west coast and 1CY at Easter Lother.

Other sightings:
142 Greylag Goose, 5 Pink-footed Goose, 3 Whooper Swan (all lingering birds), 29 Wigeon, 13 Mallard, 7 Teal, Common Scoter (South Light), 3 Long-tailed Duck, 3 Goldeneye, Red-breasted Merganser, Great Norther Diver (South Light), 10 'blue' Fulmar (South Light), Grey Heron, Lapwing, 17 Woodcock, 3 Jack Snipe, 338 Kittiwake, 4 Bonxie, 36 Guillemot, Rock Dove (35 moved south off South Light), 2 Woodpigeon, 4 Merlin, Peregrine, 40+ Blackbird (probably a small arrival), c90 Fieldfare, Black Redstart (Mid Geo), 'White Wagtail' (one at South Light was presumably responsible for later sightings at Skerryholm, Stackhoull and Gilsetter), Brambling, 11 Twite, 'Mealy Redpoll' (Springfield), 41 Snow Bunting.

Year list: 216
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Sunday 3rd November 2019
Weather: NE5-6, largely cloudy although excellent visibility.

HIGHLIGHTS:
Iceland Gull: 1CY.
Glaucous Gull: adult at North Light.
Waxwing: 1CY North Haven.

Other sightings:
120 Greylag Goose, 4 Pink-footed Goose, 2 Whooper Swan, 21 Wigeon, 6 Teal, 2 Common Scoter (South Light), 2 Long-tailed Duck, 2 Goldeneye, 3 Red-breasted Merganser, 'blue' Fulmar (South Light), Grey Heron, 2 Water Rail (Quoy and Burkle), 2 Lapwing, 2 Purple Sandpiper, 6 Woodcock, 3 Jack Snipe, 151 Kittiwake, Bonxie (past South Light), 13 Guillemot, 2 Razorbill, 2 Woodpigeon, 2 Merlin, Peregrine, Blackcap (male, Gully), Ring Ouzel (male, Barkland), 188 Fieldfare, Goldfinch (Chalet), 36 Snow Bunting.

Other Wildlife:
Killer Whale
: the '27s' (a group of Killer Whales that are regular visitors to Shetland and have been seen on Fair Isle on previous occasions, and are named after the matriach of the group) were seen off a South Light seawatch before being relocated off Sheep Rock, before putting in their usual great views in South Haven. Although they were seen again later off South Light, they did not put in any further repeat performances.

Year list: 216
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Saturday 2nd November 2019
Weather: E7-8, although decreasing slightly later. Rain until an hour or two before dark
A day with much expectation that was somewhat ruined by: (a) the weather and (b) the birds not turning up. Other than that, it was OK though! That's probably any chance of breaking the year list record gone, but it's not been a bad birding year in the end - well done and thanks to everyone who's been part of this year on Fair Isle.

HIGHLIGHTS:
Iceland Gull:. 2; 1CY in South Haven and South Harbour
Glaucous Gull: 3; adult and 2 1CY.
'Siberian Chiffchaff': 1.

Other sightings:
128 Greylag Goose, 2 Whooper Swan, 3 Wigeon, 6 Teal, 2 Red-breasted Merganser, 41 Purple Sandpiper, 7 Woodcock, 3 Jack Snipe, 25 Common Gull, 2 Woodpigeon, Short-eared Owl (Upper Leogh), Peregrine, Blackbird (a very small arrival), Mistle Thrush, Dunnock (Skadan), Brambling, Siskin, 16 Snow Bunting.

Year list: 216
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Friday 1st November 2019
Weather: SE3-4, largely cloudy with some drizzle in the afternoon.
That's it, the first day of the 'closed' season, with Nina leaving (and thanks again for your help Nina), there's just Richard and David left from the Wardening team. Hopefully there are still a few birds to be found though...

HIGHLIGHTS:
Glaucous Gull: 1CY at South Light.

Other sightings:
111 Greylag Goose, 5 Pink-footed Goose, 22 Wigeon, 6 Teal, 10 Woodcock, Bonxie (past South Light), 10 Guillemot, Long-eared Owl (Plantation), 2 Merlin, Peregrine, Brambling, Goldfinch (Chalet), 14 Siskin, 33 Snow Bunting.

Year list: 216
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Thursday 31st October 2019
Weather: SE3, 7/8 cloud with excellent visibility.
A quiet 'end of season' feel to the day, with not much in the way of new arrivals.

HIGHLIGHTS:
'Siberian Chiffchaff': 6; two at Field, and singles at Bull's Park, Schoolton, Burkle and Skadan.

Other sightings:
113 Greylag Goose, 5 Pink-footed Goose, 3 Whooper Swan, Shelduck, 20 Wigeon, 11 Teal, Long-tailed Duck, Red-breasted Merganser, 2 'blue' Fulmar (South Light and Furse), Water Rail (Obs scrape area), 4 Golden Plover, 10 Woodcock, 4 Jack Snipe, 41 Snipe, 41 Redshank, 2 Bonxie, 10 Guillemot, 2 Razorbill, 3 Woodpigeon, Short-eared Owl, 3 Merlin, 2 Peregrine, 47 Skylark, 9 Chiffchaff (including tristis birds), Blackcap, Lesser Whitethroat (Obs), 35 Blackbird, 9 Fieldfare, 420 Redwing, 173 Song Thrush, Mistle Thrush, 60 Robin, Dunnock, 15 Meadow Pipit, 58 Rock Pipit, Chaffinch, 2 Brambling, 19 Twite, 86 Siskin, 19 Snow Bunting.

Year list: 216
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Wednesday 30th October 2019
Weather: mostly a fairly calm day, with some NW wind. Dry and cool.
An interesting day, with some birds obviously on the move (although a lot of the Isle was very quiet). Some record breaking finch passage was probably the day's highlight - and gives a bit of hope for what the forthcoming SE winds may bring...

HIGHLIGHTS:
'Siberian Chiffchaff': 6; singles at Obs, Plantation, Bull's Park, Walli Burn, Lower Leogh and North Raeva.
Little Auk: 2 off South Light in the moring

Other sightings:
96 Greylag Goose, 3 Whooper Swan, Shelduck, 18 Wigeon, 8 Teal, 3 Goldeneye, Red-breasted Merganser, Great Northern Diver, 3 'blue' Fulmar (South Light, Buness and North Light), Grey Heron, Water Rail (Chalet), 3 Golden Plover, 8 Woodcock, 2 Jack Snipe, 40 Snipe, 42 Redshank, 124 Kittiwake, 3 Bonxie, 12 Guillemot, 9 Razorbill, 2 Woodpigeon, 2 Short-eared Owl, 4 Merlin, 2 Peregrine, 57 Skylark, 9 Chiffchaff (including tristis birds), 4 Blackcap, Lesser Whitethroat (Obs), Goldcrest, 37 Blackbird, 16 Fieldfare, 428 Redwing, 164 Song Thrush, Mistle Thrush, 78 Robin, Dunnock, 21 Meadow Pipit, 44 Rock Pipit, Chaffinch, 3 Brambling, 42 Twite, Redpoll sp?, Goldfinch (Field; first of the autumn), 512 Siskin (a record count for the Isle), Lapland Bunting, 90 Snow Bunting.

Year list: 216
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Tuesday 29th October 2019
Weather:
a calm start, with a slight NE wind developing. Sunny, with a few cloudy spells. A really pleasant day.
A few bits and pieces were new in, including a nice addition to the year list. There's a bit of a drifty feel at the moment, which is always nice, whilst we've all got one eye on the strong SE winds forecast from the weekend...

HIGHLIGHTS:
Woodlark: one at Hoiligoini moved to the Busta rig before being refound on top of Ward Hill. The 57th record since 1948 (the species was more regular in the early 1900s). After a run of four in the seven years 2006-2012 this was the first record since then.
'Siberian Chiffchaff': 4; singles at Stackhoull, Burkle, Plantation and near the Obs
Little Auk: one from South Light

Other sightings:
130 Greylag Goose, 5 Pink-footed Goose, 3 Whooper Swan, Shelduck, 19 Wigeon, 4 Teal, 2 Long-tailed Duck, Goldeneye, Red-breasted Merganser, Red-throated Diver, 8 'blue' Fulmar (South Light), Grey Heron, 4 Golden Plover, Woodcock, 2 Jack Snipe (including one on top of Ward Hill), 52 Snipe, 59 Redshank, 170 Kittiwake, 8 Bonxie, 10 Guillemot, Razorbill, Rock Dove (4 moved south off South Light), 3 Woodpigeon, 2 Merlin, Peregrine, 16 Rook (a large count for autumn), 52 Skylark, 7 Chiffchaff (including tristis birds), Lesser Whitethroat (Kenaby then Chalet), 51 Blackbird, 10 Fieldfare, 458 Redwing, 208 Song Thrush, 2 Mistle Thrush, 83 Robin, Dunnock (Muckle Geo o' Hoini), 30 Meadow Pipit, 72 Rock Pipit, 2 Chaffinch, 2 Brambling, 53 Twite (including 26 moving south off South Light), 3 'Mealy Redpoll', 12 Siskin, 3 Lapland Bunting (Obs), 37 Snow Bunting.

Year list: 216
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Monday 28th October 2019
Weather:
a calmer day, although the NW wind was still fresh. A few showers, but some sunny spells. Cool, although mostly not unpleasant.
Sheep Hill in the morning, which went pretty well, then as much coverage as possible given the diminishing daylight hours.

HIGHLIGHTS:
Pomarine Skua: an immature past South Light in the morning
'Siberian Chiffchaff': one at Skadan

Other sightings:
265 Greylag Goose, 12 Pink-footed Goose, 4 Whooper Swan, Shelduck, 20 Wigeon, 5 Teal, 13 Long-tailed Duck (including one that joined a migrating Rock Dove flock off South Light!), 2 Red-breasted Merganser, Red-throated Diver, Great Northern Diver, 5 'blue' Fulmar (South Light), 4 Golden Plover, 10 Woodcock (a typically slightly higher count than recent days given the large numbers of people covering the North of the Isle), 5 JackSnipe, 53 Snipe, 32 Redshank, 131 Kittiwake, 0 Bonxie (the first blank day since they returned in the spring), 9 Guillemot, Razorbill, Rock Dove (14 moved south off South Light - with a Long-tailed Duck!), 3 Woodpigeon, 2 Short-eared Owl, 3 Merlin, Peregrine, 4 Carrion Crow, 3 Chiffchaff, Blackcap, Starling (small flocks seen moving south off South Light), 23 Blackbird, 12 Fieldfare, 341 Redwing, 127 Song Thrush, 3 Mistle Thrush, 38 Robin, 25 Meadow Pipit, 8 Brambling, 19 Twite, Linnet, 7 'Mealy Redpoll', 'North-western Redpoll' (School), 16 Siskin, Lapland Bunting (Obs), 31 Snow Bunting.

Year list: 215
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Sunday 27th October 2019
Weather:
strong NW wind, with heavy showers becoming more frequent through the day, making it rather cold and unpleasant at times.
The best birding was first thing in the morning as a few interesting species were seen from a seawatch, whilst a number of passerines of several different species were seen leaving the Isle. Unfortunately, movement largely dried up during the day as the weather did the opposite.

HIGHLIGHTS:
Iceland Gull: 1CY off South Light (first of the autumn)
Little Auk: one off South Light

Other sightings:
724 Greylag Goose (including birds moving south), 18 Pink-footed Goose, 3 Whooper Swan, Shelduck, 22 Wigeon, 9 Teal, 2 Long-tailed Duck, 2 Goldeneye, 2 Red-breasted Merganser, 3 Red-throated Diver, 5 Great Northern Diver, 6 'blue' Fulmar (4 South Light, Furse and Buness), Cormorant, 7 Golden Plover, 314 Turnstone, Woodcock, 53 Snipe, 48 Redshank, 95 Kittiwake, 3 Bonxie (all off South Light), 4 Guillemot, 2 Razorbill, Rock Dove (a rare mention in the latest sightings for this species as three were watched heading south out to sea out of sight off South Light), 3 Woodpigeon, 5 Short-eared Owl, 3 Merlin, 4 Carrion Crow, 100 Skylark, 2 Chiffchaff, 2 Blackcap, 30 Blackbird, 13 Fieldfare, 473 Redwing, 127 Song Thrush, 2 Mistle Thrush, 46 Robin, 2 Grey Wagtail, 32 Meadow Pipit, 42 Rock Pipit, Chaffinch, 2 Brambling, 42 Twite (including a flock of 25 presumably heading off to their Orkney wintering grounds from South Light), 7 'Mealy Redpoll', 3 Siskin, 32 Snow Bunting.

Year list: 215
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Saturday 26th October 2019
Weather:
strong SW wind, although eased from yesterday. Cool, with a few unpleasant showers.

Sightings:
357 Greylag Goose, 13 Pink-footed Goose, 7 Whooper Swan, 2 Shelduck, 31 Wigeon, 6 Teal, Red-breasted Merganser, 2 Grey Heron, Sparrowhawk, 7 Golden Plover, 211 Turnstone, 4 Woodcock, 5 Jack Snipe, 38 Snipe, 49 Redshank, 11 Kittiwake, 10 Black-headed Gull, 7 Bonxie, 2 Woodpigeon, Long-eared Owl (Utra), 4 Short-eared Owl, 4 Merlin, Peregrine (male), 6 Carrion Crow, 70 Skylark, Chiffchaff, 2 Blackcap, Ring Ouzel, 29 Blackbird, 5 Fieldfare, 374 Redwing, 153 Song Thrush, 2 Mistle Thrush, 56 Robin, 20 Meadow Pipit, 25 Rock Pipit, Chaffinch, 10 Brambling, 10 Twite, 3 'Mealy Redpoll', 37 Siskin, 2 Lapland Bunting, 54 Snow Bunting.

Year list: 215
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Friday 25th October 2019
Weather:
Gale force SSW wind, showery (prolonged at times). Good visibility

Sightings:
212 Greylag Goose, 17 Pink-footed Goose, 18 Whooper Swan, Shelduck, 18 Wigeon, 4 Teal, Long-tailed Duck, 5 Red-breasted Merganser, Grey Heron, Sparrowhawk, 3 Golden Plover, Knot, Dunlin, 54 Kittiwake, 6 Bonxie, 12 Guillemot, 3 Woodpigeon, Merlin, Chiffchaff, Blackcap, Ring Ouzel, Mistle Thrush, 4 Snow Bunting.

Whooper Swans, Furse (Richard Cope)

Year list: 215
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Thursday 24th October 2019
Weather:
a sunny start to the day, with a couple of heavy showers in the afternoon. A fresh SSW wind increased through the day and became more SW during the afternoon.
Back to full census,with a few surprising signs of movement. The forecast is not very promising, but who knows what will happen as the last-knockings of the season come around.

Highlights:
'HORNEMANN'S ARCTIC REDPOLL': still at School Brae.

Other sightings:
42 Greylag Goose, 14 Pink-footed Goose, Whooper Swan, 22 Wigeon, 6 Teal, Red-breasted Merganser, 3 Golden Plover, 152 Turnstone, 7 Woodcock (including one seen coming in-off at South Light in the morning), 4 Jack Snipe, 40 Snipe, 43 Redshank, 14 Kittiwake, 17 Bonxie, 2 Woodpigeon, 2 Long-eared Owl (Obs and Schoolton), 4 Short-eared Owl, 2 Merlin, Peregrine, 92 Skylark, 4 Chiffchaff, 5 Blackcap, 46 Blackbird, 11 Fieldfare, 1,570 Redwing, 253 Song Thrush, 6 Mistle Thrush, 109 Robin, 19 Meadow Pipit, 49 Rock Pipit, Chaffinch, 22 Brambling, 25 Twite, 9 'Mealy Redpoll', 59 Siskin (including a flock of 40 that moved south; the highest count since 2010), Lapland Bunting (Chatham's Land), 43 Snow Bunting, 2 Reed Bunting.

Year list: 215
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22nd-23rd October 2019
Weather:
a strong SW wind with continuous heavy rain on 22nd, the fresh wind continued on 23rd becoming more SSW, with heavy rain throughout the morning and showers after, although with some drier spells in the afternoon.
No census as the conditions became unbirdable, with a few birds around but no signs of any new arrivals.

Highlights:
'HORNEMANN'S ARCTIC REDPOLL': still on the School Brae and showing well.
'Siberian Chiffchaff': one present in the south of the Isle on 23rd.

Other sightings:
13 Pink-footed Goose, 20 Wigeon, Long-tailed Duck, Red-breasted Merganser, 'blue' Fulmar (off South Light on 23rd), 2 Water Rail (Burkle and Chapel), Woodcock, 19 Kittiwake, 6 Black-headed Gull, 2 Long-eared Owl (Obs), Short-eared Owl, Merlin, Blackcap, Ring Ouzel, 2 Mistle Thrush, Wheatear (23rd), Siskin, 21 Snow Bunting, 2 Reed Bunting.

Year list: 215
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Monday 21st October 2019
Weather:
a fresh SW wind strengthening through the day, with heavy rain arriving in the evening.

Highlights:
'HORNEMANN'S ARCTIC REDPOLL': still present on School Brae.

Other sightings:
38 Greylag Goose, 14 Pink-footed Goose, Whooper Swan, 15 Wigeon, 4 Teal, Red-breasted Merganser, 2 'blue' Fulmar (Dronger), Water Rail (one in the Fire Station!), Woodcock, 2 Jack Snipe, 34 Snipe, 33 Redshank, 9 Bonxie, 4 Woodpigeon, Long-eared Owl (Obs), 2 Short-eared Owl, 2 Merlin, 2 Peregrine, 104 Skylark, 6 Chiffchaff, 2 Blackcap, Goldcrest, 40 Blackbird, 27 Fieldfare, 1,192 Redwing, 232 Song Thrush, 4 Mistle Thrush, 146 Robin, 20 Meadow Pipit, Chaffinch, 56 Brambling, 20 Twite, 9 'Mealy Redpoll', 5 Siskin, Lapland Bunting, 31 Snow Bunting.

Year list: 215
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Sunday 20th October 2019
Weather:
another cool day, with a strong northerly wind. Largely dry but somewhat wintry feeling.

Highlights:
'HORNEMANN'S ARCTIC REDPOLL': the first Arctic Redpoll for Fair Isle since 2017 (a 'Coues's Arctic Repoll' at the Airstrip in 2018 was found 'not proven' by the BBRC) was a splendid example of this north-western form on the School Brae, where a small flock of 'Mealy Redpolls' built up during the day.
Richard's Pipit: still around the Chalet area, although elusive.
Waxwing: 2 at various sites around the Isle.
Glaucous Gull: 1CY at South Light.
'Siberian Chiffchaff': one around Taft.

Other sightings:
133 Greylag Goose, 14 Pink-footed Goose, Whooper Swan, 22 Wigeon, 8 Teal, 3 Long-tailed Duck, 5 Red-breasted Merganser, Great Northern Diver (South Light), 'blue' Fulmar (South Light), 7 Grey Heron, Hen Harrier (still present and roaming the Isle), Dunlin, 8 Jack Snipe, 43 Snipe, 36 Redshank, 71 Kittiwake, 10 Bonxie, 10 Guillemot, 6 Razorbill, 3 Woodpigeon, Long-eared Owl (Obs), 8 Short-eared Owl, Merlin, 2 Peregrine, 91 Skylark, 10 Chiffchaff (including tristis bird), 10 Blackcap, 4 Goldcrest, 2 Ring Ouzel, 47 Blackbird, 39 Fieldfare, 1,420 Redwing, 264 Song Thrush, 4 Mistle Thrush, 161 Robin, Wheatear, 3 Grey Wagtail, 29 Meadow Pipit, 5 Chaffinch, 114 Brambling, 28 Twite, 25 'Mealy Redpoll', Lesser Redpoll, 7 Siskin, 156 Snow Bunting, 6 Reed Bunting.

Year list: 215
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Saturday 19th October 2019
Weather:
strong NE wind, largely sunny, although some showers in the afternoon in particular.

Highlights:
Glaucous Gull: 1CY in a large gull flock at Easter Lother Water.
Common Rosefinch: one still in the middle of the Isle.
Hawfinch: one flying north along the cliffs at Lerness.
'Siberian Chiffchaff': one at Utra.

Other sightings:
124 Greylag Goose, 13 Pink-footed Goose, Whooper Swan, 16 Wigeon, 13 Teal, 3 Long-tailed Duck, Red-breasted Merganser, Grey Heron, Hen Harrier (a ringtail at Boini Mire), 2 Woodcock, 19 Jack Snipe, 56 Snipe, 23 Redshank, 8 Bonxie, 2 Woodpigeon, Long-eared Owl (Obs), 7 Short-eared Owl, Merlin, Peregrine, 6 Carrion Crow, 61 Skylark, 20 Chiffchaff (including tristis bird), 20 Blackcap, 6 Goldcrest, 4 Ring Ouzel, 75 Blackbird, 61 Fieldfare, 2,197 Redwing, 313 Song Thrush, 2 Mistle Thrush, 195 Robin, Black Redstart, 2 Wheatear, 2 Dunnock, 2 Grey Wagtail, Pied Wagtail, 28 Meadow Pipit, 4 Chaffinch, 76 Brambling, 46 Twite, 2 'Mealy Redpoll' (and 4 redpoll sp?), 5 Siskin, 2 Lapland Bunting, 75 Snow Bunting, 2 Reed Bunting.

Year list: 214
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Friday 18th October 2019
Weather:
the wind remained in the E, although started to swing more to the north and freshen a touch. Largely sunny and pleasant though, although cooling off later on.

Highlights:
RADDE'S WARBLER: the same bird was again in Klinger's Geo, with most observers on site believing the bird to be Radde's Warbler, although opinion from observers more experienced with this species and Yellow-streaked Warbler from abroad was more mixed. Another sample of droppings was collected, but the bird remained frustratingly silent.
Olive-backed Pipit: one flushed from Field Ditch.
Richard's Pipit: one in the Chalet area.
Common Rosefinch: one still around Schoolton and Quoy.
Hawfinch: one still in the south of the Isle.
Yellow-browed Warbler: 2 still present.


Radde's Warbler, Klinger's Geo (Deryk Shaw)

Other sightings:
9 Greylag Goose, 14 Pink-footed Goose, Whooper Swan, 21 Wigeon, 13 Teal, Scaup (Da Water), Long-tailed Duck, Goldeneye, Grey Heron, Knot (Buness), 5 Woodcock, 9 Jack Snipe, 39 Snipe, 56 Redshank, 9 Bonxie, 5 Woodpigeon, Long-eared Owl (Guidicum), 9 Short-eared Owl, Peregrine, 60 Skylark, 35 Chiffchaff, Reed Warbler, 35 Blackcap, Lesser Whitethroat (Stackhoull), 23 Goldcrest, 3 Ring Ouzel, 118 Blackbird, 62 Fieldfare, 2,200 Redwing, 360 Song Thrush, 10 Mistle Thrush, 295 Robin, 3 Black Redstart, Redstart, 2 Wheatear, 2 Dunnock, 2 Grey Wagtail, 'White Wagtail', 42 Meadow Pipit, 9 Chaffinch, 94 Brambling, 96 Twite, 4 'Mealy Redpoll', 2 'North-western Redpoll', Lesser Redpoll, 16 Siskin, 2 Lapland Bunting, 30 Snow Bunting, Yellowhammer, 5 Reed Bunting.

Year list: 214
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Thursday 17th October 2019
Weather:
After strong NW winds and heavy rain overnight, the morning dawned bright with a light variable wind that became more SE by the afternoon.
Although a big clear out, there were still thousands of migrants around and obviously some new birds, including one of the biggest talking points of the autunm so far...

Highlights:
RADDE'S WARBLER*: a bird (intially thought to be a Dusky Warbler) at the bottom of Klinger's Geo moved up from the beach to feed into the sunshine on the grassy slope (occasionally using the path originally made for the Duchess of Bedford to be brought up from her yacht that moored in Klinger's) where it became clear that it was a 'Radde's-type', with Yellow-streaked Warbler quickly being mooted. Although Radde's-like in basic appearance, some features raised the possibility of Yellow-streaked Warbler (a distinctly plausible possible vagrant to western Europe). In particular, many observers thought the bill to be somewhat small for Radde's and the legs to be rather slender (although not all observers were agreed with these features). The observers present were lacking in Yellow-streaked Warbler experience, but most agreed that it was indeed an interesting bird, with many who have seen a lot of Radde's confident that it was unlike any of that species they were familiar with. Consulting 'Frontiers of Birding' on site, swayed opinion back towards Radde's, although looking through online images, and comments from experienced observers abroad later on, suggested it was far from an open and shut case. What was also clear was that Yellow-streaked Warbler identification is not easy, with no really definitive plumage differences between that species and Radde's Warbler. Unfortunately, the bird didn't respond to tapes of either species and remained silent throughout (the call being one of the few distinctive differences between the species), even as it appeared to be settling down towards dusk. Trapping it was, of course, considered to try to get a definitive identification, although it proved to not be feasible in its chosen location. A sample of what was hopefully its faecal matter was collected though, which is bagged up and ready to leave the Isle, and this may provide us with a definitive answer. There was a certain amount of wing-flicking noted (although it could go for very long periods without any being seen) and no yellow streaks were noted on field views (although some photos appear to show some markings on the breast sides). The underparts appeared quite yellowy at times, with peachy/buffy undertail coverts, although when feeding in the shadows, or at greater distance these colours appeared much reduced compared to the views as it fed in the open in the sunshine. The supercilium appeared rather yellowish throughout (although not appearing especially diffuse in front of the eye) and the ear coverts were noticeably mottled, although neither of these features appears to add much to the debate.
It has been pencilled into the year list as a Radde's, but we're hoping that it is still present tomorrow and becomes vocal. It is a very interesting bird and credit is due to the finder and those who initially raised questions about the identification, with thanks also to all those who have also been in touch with comments on the identification. Please drop us an email if you have any opinions or useful identification hints.
*other rare Phyllosc options are available

PECHORA PIPIT: still present, although not relocated until the afternoon when it was in the Chalet and then Upper Stoneybrek area.
Olive-backed Pipit: 2; one still around Stackhoull and Boini Mire, with another in the north presumably being yesterday's Easter Lother bird.
Richard's Pipit: one over the Raevas was presumably yesterday's Stackhoull bird.
Firecrest: one still present.
Barred Warbler: 2; Quoy and Schoolton.
Common Rosefinch: Schoolton (first of the month).
Hawfinch: two still present, one of which was ringed in the Plantation.
Yellow-browed Warbler: 5; Gilly Burn, Hoini, Raevas, Stackhoull and Houll.
'Siberian Chiffchaff': one still in the south.

Other sightings:
47 Greylag Goose, 14 Pink-footed Goose, Whooper Swan, 22 Wigeon, 9 Teal, Scaup (Da Water), Goldeneye, Red-breasted Merganser, Great Northern Diver (South Light), 'blue' Fulmar (off South Light), Grey Heron, Knot (first of the month), 12 Woodcock, 13 Jack Snipe, 34 Snipe, 27 Redshank, 20 Bonxie, 8 Woodpigeon, 2 Long-eared Owl (one trapped in the Plantation, with another in the Gully), 9 Short-eared Owl, 2 Merlin, 30 Skylark, Willow Warbler, 53 Chiffchaff (including tristis bird), 2 Reed Warbler, 33 Blackcap, 38 Goldcrest, 5 Ring Ouzel, 184 Blackbird, 52 Fieldfare, 5,253 Redwing, 547 Song Thrush, 3 Mistle Thrush, 399 Robin, 2 Black Redstart, 3 Redstart, 3 Wheatear, 2 Dunnock, Grey Wagtail, Pied Wagtail, 31 Meadow Pipit, Tree Pipit (Quoy), 13 Chaffinch, 77 Brambling, 90 Twite, 2 'Mealy Redpoll', 4 Siskin, 3 Lapland Bunting, 37 Snow Bunting, Yellowhammer (Utra), 5 Reed Bunting.

Year list: 214
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Wednesday 16th October 2019
Weather:
SE 3-4, occasionally more blustery. After a murky start at dawn a largely sunny day developed before a mostly cloudy late afternoon, with heavy rain overnight as the wind freshened substantially from the NW
An absolutely amazing day, with it being clear from first light (and before!) that the conditions had combined perfectly to produce a large arrival or birds, with thrushes in particular carpeting the island. A day of constant movement and birds is a fabulous experience, but not always the easiest to find rarer species (according to legend, the biggest rares often seem to be found a day or two after the big fall), but there were still a couple of additions to the year list and a few other scarcities noted. The nets and traps were busy, with 151 birds ringed around the Obs and Heligolands (and another 31 at Burkle). It's currently an amazing spell of birding, with each day bringing new birds and new experiences - great stuff!

Highlights:
PECHORA PIPIT: still present and showing around the Upper Stoneybrek area, occasionally on the road.
Olive-backed Pipit: 2; one lingering around Easter Lother and a series of sightings in the south that related to at least one individual in the Stackhoull and Quoy area. The first of the year and 113th and 114th records for Fair Isle.
Richard's Pipit: 2; singles at Wester Lother and in the Stackhoull area.
Firecrest: one still roaming around, initially in the Linni Geo area.
Shorelark: 2 flew south with Snow Buntings (first of the autumn).
Hawfinch: 2 roaming the Isle, including a male trapped and ringed in the Plantation.
Yellow-browed Warbler: 2; Hoini and Burkle.
'Siberian Chiffchaff': 3

Other sightings:
Greylag Goose, Pink-footed Goose, Whooper Swan, 15 Wigeon, 22 Teal, Scaup (Da Water; first of the year), Goldeneye, Grey Heron, Sparrowhawk, 18 Woodcock, 15 Jack Snipe, 91 Snipe, 62 Redshank, 9 Black-headed Gull, 19 Bonxie, 8 Woodpigeon, 7 Short-eared Owl, Merlin, Peregrine, 75 Skylark, 2 Willow Warbler, 37 Chiffchaff (including tristis birds), 2 Reed Warbler, 54 Blackcap, 63 Goldcrest, 15 Ring Ouzel, 296 Blackbird, 327 Fieldfare, 12,820 Redwing (the highest count since 2000), 686 Song Thrush (highest count since 2014), 8 Mistle Thrush, 407 Robin (the highest count since the same number were recorded in 2012, and the highest autumn count since 2000), 5 Black Redstart, 3 Redstart, 2 Wheatear, 3 Dunnock, 3 Grey Wagtail, 2 Pied Wagtail, 33 Meadow Pipit, Tree Pipit (Quoy), 11 Chaffinch, 112 Brambling, 34 Twite, 7 'Mealy Redpoll', 17 Siskin, 2 Lapland Bunting, 38 Snow Bunting, Yellowhammer (Utra; first of the year), 13 Reed Bunting.

Year list: 213
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Tuesday 15th October 2019
Weather:
a fresh SE breeze, largely dry, although some showers moving through.
An interesting start to the day, although it appeared relatively quiet until Nina and Rob turned up a classic Fair Isle rarity. After that, it started to get a bit crazy, with birds arriving en-masse. There was a good haul of common migrants, but it was proving difficult to find much in the way of rarities amongst them, until Steve Arlow turned up the best Fair Isle bird of the day (in rarity terms at least, perhaps in looks as well - although there were a lot of attractive stripes and streaks to chose from today!) before another classic Fair Isle bird was found late to add to an already impressive haul. At some point, the goodies will run out, but with so many new birds in today, it seems possible that there'll be more to find tomorrow in what is proving to be an impressive, and very enjoyable, spell of birding.

Highlights:
LANCEOLATED WARBLER: one found by Nina and Rob in Gilsetter was trapped to confirm the identification; the 98th record for Fair Isle and a somewhat later than average arrival date.
PECHORA PIPIT: an intially elusive bird found by visitors Ollie and Simon at Upper Stoneybrek (to add to the Red-throated Pipit they found a couple of days ago) went on to show well on the road by Barkland; the first record since 2016 (the species has occurred roughly once every three years in the last 16 years) and 45th record for the Isle.
Firecrest: one briefly on the clifftop at Kroga Geo then headed inland. Somewhat incongruously, this was actually the rarest bird in Fair Isle terms on the Isle today, being only the 10th record (although the sixth since 2009).
Red-flanked Bluetail: an unringed bird in North Gunnawark may well have been a new arrival, although unless photos show any difference from the South Raeva bird of yesterday, it may not be possible to prove so.
Pallas's Warbler: presumably yesterday's bird was at Burkle before heading off towards the Chapel.
Bluethroat: one at Lower Leogh was the first of the autumn.
Hawfinch: one at Haa was the first record since August.
Marsh Warbler: one in Walli Burn was just the second of the autumn (and year).
Yellow-browed Warbler: 8; South Raeva, Midway, Gunnawark, Guidicum, Skinner's Glig, Bull's Park, Meoness and Chalet.
'Siberian Chiffchaff': 3 (with several others also appearing of 'eastern' origin).

Pechora Pipit, Barkland (David Parnaby). An unusual view of a Pechora showing off as many of its stripes as possible (better photos are available elsewhere)!

Other sightings:
13 Greylag Goose, Pink-footed Goose, Whooper Swan, 23 Wigeon, 8 Teal, Tufted Duck (flew south down the Isle), Long-tailed Duck (North Haven), Goldeneye, Red-breasted Merganser, Grey Heron, Sparrowhawk, 2 Water Rail (Burkle and Chalet), Golden Plover, 10 Woodcock, 10 Jack Snipe, 50 Snipe, 65 Redshank, 16 Bonxie, 3 Woodpigeon, 2 Short-eared Owl, Kestrel, 2 Merlin, 2 Peregrine, 68 Skylark, 30 Chiffchaff (including tristis birds), Reed Warbler (Burkle), 35 Blackcap, 2 Lesser Whitethroat (Loangie and South Light), 136 Goldcrest, 8 Ring Ouzel, 62 Blackbird, 67 Fieldfare, 830 Redwing, 240 Song Thrush, 3 Mistle Thrush (2 Gunnawark, 1 Ditfield), 251 Robin, 3 Black Redstart (Setter, Lower Stoneybrek and Skinner's Glig), 4 Redstart, Stonechat (Midway), 5 Wheatear, 4 Dunnock, 2 Grey Wagtail, Pied Wagtail, 62 Meadow Pipit, Tree Pipit (Quoy), 12 Chaffinch, 63 Brambling, 90 Twite, 4 'Mealy Redpoll' (plus 6 other redpoll sp?), 16 Siskin, 3 Lapland Bunting, 66 Snow Bunting, 5 Reed Bunting.

Other wildlife:
4+ Risso's Dolphin (off Ward Hill).
Silver Y

Year list: 211
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Monday 14th October 2019
Weather:
very calm to start, with a light SE breeze developing. Sunny at first, with a shower and more cloudy conditions in the late afternoon.
Another brilliant day, as the autumn has really come alive. Not quite birds everywhere, but clear increases in several species and more rarities found. There's a lot of excitement for the forecast for tomorrow as well, can we keep building on an impressive run?...

Highlights:
Pallas's Warbler: the 43rd individual for Fair Isle, but first since 2005, was found at Dog Geo by Richard, before relocating to the Haa.
Red-flanked Bluetail: 2; the third and fourth of the year (and 20th and 21st for the Isle). One trapped at the Obs in the morning with an unringed bird at South Raeva in the afternoon.
Dusky Warbler: an elusive and mobile individual in the Shirva and Meadow Burn area; the first since 2017 and 20th record for the Isle
RED-THROATED PIPIT: still present and roaming, although around Hill Dyke and Setter today.
Yellow-browed Warbler: 9; Burkle (2), Chalet (2), Linni Geo, Schoolton, Ward Hill, Easter Lother, North Haven.
'Siberian Chiffchaff': 4.
Waxwing: one still wandering.
Glaucous Gull: 1CY in the North.

Pallas's Warbler, Dog Geo (David Parnaby)

Other sightings:
39 Greylag Goose, Pink-footed Goose, Whooper Swan, 6 Wigeon, 2 Teal, Long-tailed Duck (North Haven), Goldeneye, Red-breasted Merganser, Red-throated Diver (North Haven), Grey Heron, Water Rail (Utra), 3 Golden Plover, 2 Woodcock, 3 Jack Snipe, 40 Snipe, 53 Redshank, 14 Bonxie, Woodpigeon, Short-eared Owl (School), Merlin, 2 Peregrine, 5 Carrion Crow (the 'resident' birds joined by 3 migrants), 83 Skylark, Willow Warbler, 38 Chiffchaff (including tristis birds), 9 Blackcap, Lesser Whitethroat (Kenaby), 69 Goldcrest, Ring Ouzel, 47 Blackbird, 33 Fieldfare, 585 Redwing, 77 Song Thrush, 36 Robin, Pied Flycatcher (Linni and Steensi Geo), Redstart (still at Taft), 4 Wheatear, 5 Dunnock, 3 Grey Wagtail, 152 Meadow Pipit, 3 Tree Pipit, 104 Rock Pipit, 18 Chaffinch, 13 Brambling, 123 Twite, 6 'Mealy Redpoll', 'North-western Redpoll', 6 Siskin, 45 Snow Bunting, 2 Reed Bunting.

Other wildlife:
Silver Y.

Year list: 208
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Sunday 13th October 2019
Weather:
a light breeze from the NE freshening a wee bit during the day. A little bit of rain early on, but then dry and largely sunny, a very pleasant day all in all.
The Annual Report just got a bit bigger, with four additions to the year list today! Although the day started fairly quietly, there was something about it that felt like there would be something out there. Admittedly, we've been saying that for days, but today it finally happened! A calm forecast for tomorrow could see some departures, but may well bring some new birds. It's certainly an exciting time to be birding Fair Isle.

Highlights:
BROWN SHRIKE: one found at Schoolton (by Glen, whilst he looked for the stonechat), roamed the middle of the Isle until the late afternoon at least. The second record for Fair Isle, following the second British record on 21st October 2000.
'EASTERN STONECHAT': one found by Nick at Schoolton appears to be a good candidate for Stejneger's Stonechat (a species not yet on the Fair Isle list, although several previous birds have been suspected of being this taxon).
RED-THROATED PIPIT: a mobile but vocal individual was found at Haa (by visiting birders Simon and Ollie) before relocating to the Meadow Burn and Leogh area. The first of the year, first record since 2017 and 92nd for Fair Isle.
Little Auk: an unusual record concerned one flushed from just outside the North Light compound before flying towards Dronger; first of the year.
Glaucous Gull: 1CY in the Johnny Peat's area.
Waxwing: the ringed bird continued to roam the Isle.
Yellow-browed Warbler: 2; Chalet and Schoolton.
'Siberian Chiffchaff': one trapped and ringed at Burkle.

Other sightings:
62 Greylag Goose (mostly southerly passage), 2 Whooper Swan, 22 Wigeon, 7 Teal, Long-tailed Duck (still in North Haven), 2 Red-breasted Merganser, Great Northern Diver (South Light), Cormorant, Water Rail (one at Chalet predated by a cat), Golden Plover, 11 Jack Snipe, 24 Snipe, 48 Redshank, 15 Bonxie, 2 Woodpigeon, 4 Short-eared Owl, 2 Merlin, 3 Peregrine, 7 Rook (headed south), 92 Skylark, Willow Warbler (Walli Burn), 12 Chiffchaff (including tristis bird), 8 Blackcap, 15 Goldcrest, 10 Blackbird, 57 Fieldfare, 191 Redwing, 56 Song Thrush, 27 Robin, Redstart, Wheatear, 3 Dunnock, 2 Grey Wagtail, 2 'White Wagtail', 3 Pied Wagtail, 123 Meadow Pipit, Tree Pipit (Quoy), 84 Rock Pipit, 8 Chaffinch, 16 Brambling, 61 Twite, Linnet, 9 'Mealy Redpoll', 2 Siskin, 2 Lapland Bunting, 93 Snow Bunting, Reed Bunting.

Other wildlife:
Red Admiral, Silver Y.

Year list: 206 (the best day for additions to the year list since 14th May!), including the 'Eastern Stonechat'.
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Saturday 12th October 2019
Weather:
Calm, with a bit of a breeze from the W. Largely sunny with excellent visibility.

Highlights:
Waxwing: one at the School toured the Isle, including the Obs garden (where it was ringed); first of the year.
Yellow-browed Warbler: 4; Chalet, Schoolton, Lower Leogh, Haa.
'Siberian Chiffchaff': 2.

Other sightings:
99 Greylag Goose, 13 Pink-footed Goose, Whooper Swan, 2 Wigeon, 8 Teal, Long-tailed Duck (Haven), Red-breasted Merganser, 'blue'Fulmar, 5 Golden Plover, Woodcock, 7 Jack Snipe, 23 Snipe, 46 Redshank, 24 Kittiwake, 9 Common Gull, 14 Bonxie, 2 Woodpigeon, 3 Short-eared Owl, Kestrel, 3 Merlin, 90 Skylark, 10 Chiffchaff (including 2 tristis birds), 5 Blackcap, 7 Goldcrest, 4 Ring Ouzel, 16 Blackbird, 43 Fieldfare, 158 Redwing, 96 Song Thrush, 47 Robin, 4 Redstart, 4 Wheatear, 4 Dunnock, 3 Grey Wagtail, 3 'White Wagtail', 2 Pied Wagtail, 150 Meadow Pipit, 123 Rock Pipit, 5 Chaffinch, 14 Brambling, 238 Twite, Linnet, 5 'Mealy Redpoll' (plus one 'North-western Redpoll'), Lesser Redpoll, 2 Siskin, 2 Lapland Bunting, 110 Snow Bunting (Hoini), 3 Reed Bunting.

Other wildlife:
10 Risso's Dolphin (moving up the east coast).
Silver Y, Diamond-back Moth.

Year list: 202
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Friday 11th October 2019
Weather:
calmer, with a light or moderate SW wind, a couple of showers, but mostly sunny.
Planes and the Good Shepherd IV were running today and it was a very nice day to be out. A few new birds, although some species had cleared out, and some visible passage.

Highlights:
Yellow-browed Warbler: 3; Lower Stoneybrek, Lower Leogh and Burkle/Haa.
'Siberian Chiffchaff': Burkle.

Other sightings:
Barnacle Goose, 8 Greylag Goose, 13 Pink-footed Goose, Whooper Swan, 5 Wigeon, 12 Teal, Goldeneye, Red-breasted Merganser, Slavonian Grebe (North Haven), Sparrowhawk (male, Gully), Water Rail (Gully), 2 Golden Plover, 2 Bar-tailed Godwit, 18 Jack Snipe, 38 Snipe, 78 Redshank, 122 Kittiwake, 35 Common Gull, 27 Bonxie, 2 Woodpigeon, 11 Short-eared Owl, 3 Kestrel, 3 Merlin, 3 Peregrine, 128 Skylark, 2 Swallow, 7 Chiffchaff (including the tristis bird), 7 Blackcap, 18 Goldcrest, 8 Ring Ouzel, 40 Blackbird, 12 Fieldfare, 296 Redwing, 143 Song Thrush, 39 Robin, Black Redstart (North Light), 3 Redstart, 2 Whinchat, 6 Wheatear, 2 Dunnock, 3 Grey Wagtail (including a Norwegian-ringed bird trapped at the Obs), 2 Pied Wagtail, 246 Meadow Pipit (including southerly passage as birds were seen leaving off Skadan and Meoness), Tree Pipit (Quoy), 101 Rock Pipit, Chaffinch, 22 Brambling, 198 Twite (with birds seen heading south), Linnet, 8 'Mealy Redpoll', 2 Siskin, 5 Lapland Bunting, 43 Snow Bunting, 8 Reed Bunting.

Other wildlife: 4 Risso's Dolphin (from the Good Shepherd 1.5 miles north of Fair Isle).

Year list: 201
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Thursday 10th October 2019
Weather:
very strong westerly wind, showers in the morning, largely giving way to a dry and sunny afternoon, with the wind easing slightly by evening.
No planes today as the wind was too strong, but potential Shetland twitchers were scuppered by the Stilt not being seen anyway (has it carried on North?...). Not a totally birdless day by any means, with some calm weather and even a bit of easterly coming up, there's hopefully a few more bits on the way, especially as it appeared that some bits may have been arriving later on.

Highlights:
Yellow-browed Warbler: 3; Utra, Klinger's Geo and Haa.
'Siberian Chiffchaff': 2; Burkle area and Taft.

Other sightings:
Barnacle Goose, 61 Greylag Goose, 13 Pink-footed Goose, Whooper Swan, 16 Wigeon, 14 Teal, 8 Long-tailed Duck, Goldeneye, Red-breasted Merganser, Great Northern Diver (past South Light), Sooty Shearwater (past South Light), Slavonian Grebe (North Haven), 2 Grey Heron, 2 Sparrowhawk, 2 Water Rail (Gilly Burn and South Light), 5 Golden Plover, Bar-tailed Godwit, 138 Turnstone, 8 Purple Sandpiper, 8 Jack Snipe, 33 Snipe, 73 Redshank, Greenshank (South Harbour), 310 Kittiwake (mostly passing South Light), 38 Common Gull, 39 Bonxie (including 11 past South Light), 22 Razorbill (past South Light) 2 Woodpigeon, 23 Short-eared Owl, 3 Kestrel, Merlin, Peregrine, 130 Skylark, Swallow, 8 Chiffchaff (including the 2 tristis birds), 8 Blackcap, 6 Goldcrest, 18 Ring Ouzel, 28 Blackbird, 29 Fieldfare, 505 Redwing, 110 Song Thrush, 29 Robin, 2 Redstart, 3 Wheatear, 3 Grey Wagtail, Pied Wagtail, 'White Wagtail', 80 Meadow Pipit, 80 Rock Pipit, 2 Chaffinch, 25 Brambling, 48 Twite, 5 Common Redpoll, 5 Siskin, 2 Lapland Bunting, 35 Snow Bunting, 2 Reed Bunting.

Other wildlife: Risso's Dolphin (off South Light).

Year list: 201
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Wednesday 9th October 2019
Weather:
a strong S or SW wind, with showers and some heavier spells of rain, with a sunny evening but then heavy rain arriving after dark.
Although the day was feeling the least likely of recent ones to produce anything good, there was a most unexpected addition to the Fair Isle list. In an article in the FIBO 2015 Annual Report, it was noted as being one of the four commonest BBRC species not yet on the Isle list (alongside Nutcracker, Penduline Tit, and Blue-winged Teal), although it still seemed like a long shot. With Great White Egret, Little Egret and Glossy Ibis also added to the Fair Isle list since 2014, it does perhaps fit a pattern. Cattle Egret is still a major rarity in the Northern Isles, but there have been a few more Scottish records in recent years, so perhaps that will turn up soon as well.

Highlights:
BLACK-WINGED STILT: a 1CY bird found on the North Haven beach at around 2pm by Stewart Thomson of Quoy was a first for Fair Isle (and Shetland). Although it flew off at one point, it had returned to the beach and was feeding on the last remaining exposed sand until at least 6.10pm. Angus Murray of Birdline Scotland tells us it will be 12th Scottish record (if it and a couple others from this year are accepted) and would represent the 393rd species for the Isle (not including Daurian/Turkestan Shrike).

Black-winged Stilt, North Haven (David Parnaby)

Other sightings:
Barnacle Goose, Greylag Goose, 13 Pink-footed Goose, Whooper Swan, 17 Wigeon, 11 Teal, Tufted Duck, 2 Goldeneye, Red-breasted Merganser, Great Northern Diver, Slavonian Grebe (again in North Haven), 2 Grey Heron, 2 Sparrowhawk, 2 Water Rail (Vaadal and Ditfield), 11 Golden Plover, 2 Bar-tailed Godwit, 133 Turnstone, 15 Purple Sandpiper, 8 Jack Snipe, 45 Snipe, 65 Redshank, 86 Common Gull, 15 Bonxie, 2 Woodpigeon, 13 Short-eared Owl, 3 Kestrel, Merlin, 2 Peregrine, 158 Skylark, 4 Chiffchaff, 6 Blackcap, 3 Goldcrest, 12 Ring Ouzel (minimum), 40 Blackbird, 17 Fieldfare, 597 Redwing, 123 Song Thrush, 27 Robin, Redstart (Schoolton), 3 Wheatear, Dunnock, 4 Grey Wagtail, 2 Pied Wagtail, 119 Meadow Pipit, 102 Rock Pipit, 5 Chaffinch, 33 Brambling, 119 Twite, 7 'Mealy Redpoll', 7 Siskin, 4 Lapland Bunting, 60 Snow Bunting, 3 Reed Bunting.

Year list: 201
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Tuesday 8th October 2019
Weather:
a calmer day, with a fresh wind from the SSE becoming more SSW during the day. A few showers early on and then again in the later afternoon, but some nice sunny spells.
Another day that felt like it maybe should have had a rarity to top things off, but some very enjoyable birding none the less and increases in various species. Westerly winds coming up, let's see what the change in direction brings.

Highlights:
Yellow-browed Warbler: one at Taft.
Pectoral Sandpiper: the 1CY still in South Harbour.

Other sightings:
Barnacle Goose, Greylag Goose, 13 Pink-footed Goose, Whooper Swan, 7 Wigeon, 7 Teal, 2 Long-tailed Duck (past South Light), 3 Goldeneye, 3 Goosander, 2 Red-breasted Merganser, 3 Grey Heron, Cormorant, 2 Sparrowhawk, Moorhen (present daily in Schoolton garden recently), 2 Lapwing, 4 Golden Plover, 2 Bar-tailed Godwit, 211 Turnstone, 5 Purple Sandpiper, 4 Woodcock, 8 Jack Snipe, 68 Snipe, 41 Redshank, 56 Common Gull, Lesser Black-backed Gull (adult at South Light again), 16 Bonxie, 3 Woodpigeon, 7 Short-eared Owl, 4 Kestrel, 2 Merlin, 3 Peregrine, 169 Skylark, 8 Chiffchaff, 6 Blackcap, 22 Goldcrest, 31 Ring Ouzel, 63 Blackbird, 55 Fieldfare, 621 Redwing, 186 Song Thrush, Mistle Thrush, 60 Robin, Black Redstart (Wirvie Geo), 2 Redstart, 5 Wheatear, 3 Dunnock, 4 Grey Wagtail, 3 White Wagtail (plus 3 Pied and 1 alba wagtail), 94 Meadow Pipit, 144 Rock Pipit, 5 Chaffinch, 32 Brambling, 71 Twite, 10 'Mealy Redpoll', 11 Siskin, 2 Lapland Bunting (Hill Dyke and Furse), 42 Snow Bunting, 2 Reed Bunting.

Ring Ouzel, Skinner's Glig, (David Parnaby)

Other wildlife: 2 Painted Lady

Year list: 200
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Monday 7th October 2019
Weather:
Gale, or Severe Gale force SE winds, with rather heavy rain from late morning.
Obviously lots of birds about, but the wind made seeing down the sheltered cliffs very difficult, and once the rain set in, it became unbirdable. The team attempted census, but not all areas were able to be covered and the counts will reflect the weather as well.

Highlights:
Pectoral Sandpiper: again in South Harbour
'Siberian Chiffchaff': one still at the Haa.

Other sightings:
Barnacle Goose, Greylag Goose, 13 Pink-footed Goose, Whooper Swan, 3 Wigeon, 13 Teal, Goldeneye, 2 Red-breasted Merganser, Slavonian Grebe (North Haven), Grey Heron, 2 Sparrowhawk, 3 Lapwing, 7 Golden Plover, 2 Bar-tailed Godwit, 106 Turnstone, 3 Purple Sandpiper, 4 Woodcock, 9 Jack Snipe, 40 Snipe, 46 Redshank, 56 Common Gull, Lesser Black-backed Gull, 2 Woodpigeon, 6 Short-eared Owl, 2 Kestrel, 2 Merlin, Peregrine, 131 Skylark, 4 Chiffchaff (including the tristis bird), 4 Blackcap, 7 Ring Ouzel, 19 Blackbird, 32 Fieldfare, 560 Redwing, 78 Song Thrush, 19 Robin, 3 Redstart, 2 Wheatear, Dunnock (Easter Lother), 4 Grey Wagtail, 3 White Wagtail (and 1 alba wagtail), 8 Chaffinch, 13 Brambling, 2 'Mealy Redpoll', 10 Siskin, Lapland Bunting (Pund), 25 Snow Bunting, 2 Reed Bunting.

Year list: 200
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Sunday 6th October 2019
Weather:
E or ESE 6/7, largely cloudy, although some sunny spells later.
A great day's birding, especially on the slightly more sheltered west and north coasts, with many species increasing in number and a quality rarity .

Highlights:
Red-flanked Bluetail: one in Wester Lother; the second of the year and (subject to acceptance) the 19th record for Fair Isle.
Yellow-browed Warbler: 2 (Houll/Schollton and Vaadal).
'Siberian Chiffchaff': 2 (Stackhoull and Wester Lother).
Glaucous Gull: 2 (1CYs at Easter Lother Water and Homisdale).

Other sightings:
Barnacle Goose, Greylag Goose, 13 Pink-footed Goose, Whooper Swan, 10 Wigeon, 15 Teal, Tufted Duck, 5 Goldeneye, 2 Red-breasted Merganser, Slavonian Grebe (North Haven), Hen Harrier (ringtail), Sparrowhawk (female, which killed a juvenile Starling), Water Rail (flew over the Gully and up Homisdale), Lapwing, 3 Golden Plover, 2 Bar-tailed Godwit, 197 Turnstone, 4 Purple Sandpiper, 4 Woodcock, 19 Jack Snipe (including one flushed from the top of Ward Hill), 66 Snipe, 33 Redshank, 22 Bonxie, 3 Woodpigeon, 6 Short-eared Owl, 3 Kestrel, 2 Merlin, 2 Peregrine, 147 Skylark, Willow Warbler, 10 Chiffchaff (including the 2 tristis birds), Reed Warbler (North Haven), 7 Blackcap, Lesser Whitethroat, 58 Goldcrest, 2 Ring Ouzel (South Naaversgill and Ward Hill), 15 Blackbird, 61 Fieldfare, 628 Redwing, 161 Song Thrush, Mistle Thrush (first of the autumn), 37 Robin, 4 Redstart, Whinchat, 9 Wheatear, Dunnock (Dronger), 3 Grey Wagtail, 2 White Wagtail, 119 Meadow Pipit, 63 Rock Pipit, 8 Chaffinch, 20 Brambling, 123 Twite, 7 'Mealy Redpoll', 20 Siskin, 30 Snow Bunting, 4 Reed Bunting.

Year list: 200
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Saturday 5th October 2019
Weather:
strong ESE wind, freshening through the day. Apart from a shower in the morning, dry and largely sunny.
Sheep Hill in the morning postponed census until the afternoon, clearly lots of birds - with presumably more down the cliffs where there was some shelter.Another good day's birding, just lacking in the odd rarity or two. Even windier tomorrow and Monday looks windier and wet, so it's going to be tough birding, but still exciting times!

Highlights:
Yellow-browed Warbler: 4 (Plantation/Gilsetter, North Naaversgill, South Naaversgill, Obs).
'Siberian Chiffchaff': 3.
Pectoral Sandpiper: still in South Harbour.

Other sightings:
Barnacle Goose, Greylag Goose, 13 Pink-footed Goose, Whooper Swan, 13 Wigeon, 12 Teal, 2 Red-breasted Merganser, Slavonian Grebe (North Haven), 2 Grey Heron, 2 Hen Harrier (male and ringtail, Pund), Lapwing, 3 Golden Plover, 2 Bar-tailed Godwit, 2 Purple Sandpiper, 2 Woodcock (first of the autumn), 15 Jack Snipe, 53 Snipe, 47 Redshank, Lesser Black-backed Gull (adult at South Light), 15 Bonxie, 7 Short-eared Owl, Kestrel, 3 Merlin, Peregrine, 150 Skylark, Swallow, Willow Warbler, 9 Chiffchaff (including the 3 tristis birds), 6 Blackcap, 2 Lesser Whitethroat, 97 Goldcrest, 3 Blackbird, 8 Fieldfare, 338 Redwing, 34 Song Thrush, 5 Robin, 4 Redstart, Whinchat, 8 Wheatear, Dunnock, 2 Grey Wagtail, 3 White Wagtail (along with a Pied Wagtail), 93 Meadow Pipit, Tree Pipit, 59 Rock Pipit, 2 Chaffinch, 19 Brambling, 75 Twite, 6 'Mealy Redpoll', Siskin, Lapland Bunting, 64 Snow Bunting.

Other wildlife: Painted Lady, Red Admiral.

Year list: 200
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Friday 4th October 2019
Weather:
an ESE breeze, freshening through the day, largely sunny and generally a really nice day.
A slightly weird feel, as one of the best day's birding for a while was carried out in the sunshine, with hardly any birders on the Isle - giving it a distinctly un-peak season feel. With no rarities, and not really much in the way of scarcities, it wasn't the kind of day that will have made much of an impression off the Isle, but there's something pretty magical about flocks of Redwings zipping about and being surrounded by roving bands of Goldcrests, with numbers of birds building through the day, that everyone birding the Isle enjoyed. Of course, we'll be hoping for more tomorrow (although Sheep Hill in the morning will mean a later start for census).

Highlights:
Yellow-browed Warbler: 9 (Gully, North Gunnawark, Lower Stoneybrek, North Shirva, Meadow Burn, Nether Taft, Shaltstane, High Holm and Malcolm's Head).
'Siberian Chiffchaff': a silent bird, at Walli Burn then Utra.
Pectoral Sandpiper: the 1CY still in South Harbour.

Other sightings:
Barnacle Goose, 8 Greylag Goose, 13 Pink-footed Goose, Whooper Swan (South Harbout then Da Water), 16 Wigeon, 18 Teal, 5 Goldeneye, 2 Red-breasted Merganser, 'blue' Fulmar (Meoness), 2 Slavonian Grebe (North Haven and South Harbour), Grey Heron, Cormorant, Hen Harrier (ringtail over Field Ditch then Pund), Lapwing, 9 Golden Plover, 2 Bar-tailed Godwit, 12 Jack Snipe, 40 Snipe, 42 Redshank, 38 Bonxie, Razorbill, 5 Short-eared Owl, 3 Kestrel, 2 Merlin, Peregrine, 175 Skylark, 2 Swallow, 3 Willow Warbler, 9 Chiffchaff (including the presumed tristis), 5 Blackcap, 3 Garden Warbler, Lesser Whitethroat, 2 Whitethroat, 74 Goldcrest, 10 Fieldfare, 367 Redwing, 45 Song Thrush, 12 Robin, 3 Redstart, Whinchat, 6 Wheatear, Dunnock, 3 Grey Wagtail, 3 White Wagtail (along with 3 alba wagtail), 168 Meadow Pipit, 4 Tree Pipit, 113 Rock Pipit, 4 Chaffinch, 33 Brambling, 160 Twite, Linnet, 9 'Mealy Redpoll', Siskin, Lapland Bunting (Pund/Chalet), 66 Snow Bunting, 2 Reed Bunting.

Other wildlife: 2+ Risso's Dolphin (off Malcolm's Head).

Year list: 200
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Thursday 3rd October 2019
Weather:
The wind started moving round more to the ENE throughout the day, remaining fairly light to moderate throughout. Largely sunny.
Although it was relatively slim pickings today, there were enough hints of promise to suggest that there could be something good tomorrow. As ever, we'll head out hopeful and see what the day brings...

Highlights:
Barred Warbler: 1CY Schoolton.
Pectoral Sandpiper: the juvenile still showing well in South Harbour.
Yellow-browed Warbler: 2 at Bull's Park, which may have been reponsible for sightings later in the afternoon at the Chalet and Scholhouse.

Other sightings:
3 Barnacle Goose (one of which was downed by a Bonxie from about 60m above the sea before being drowned and eaten), 5 Greylag Goose, 13 Pink-footed Goose, Whooper Swan, 17 Wigeon, 11 Teal, Goldeneye (North Haven), 2 Red-breasted Merganser, Great Northern Diver (South Light), 'blue' Fulmar (2 South Light, 2 Meoness and a single Rippack, including a couple lingering on the sea in Fulmar flocks), Slavonian Grebe (Haven), Cormorant, Moorhen (again at Schoolton), 3 Lapwing, 10 Golden Plover, 2 Bar-tailed Godwit, 92 Turnstone, 2 Dunlin, 3 Jack Snipe, 40 Snipe, 46 Redshank, 39 Bonxie, Guillemot, 4 Razorbill, 2 Short-eared Owl (Obs and Da Water), 2 Kestrel, 4 Merlin, Peregrine, 127 Skylark, 3 Swallow, 2 Willow Warbler, 3 Chiffchaff, 5 Blackcap, Garden Warbler, 4 Lesser Whitethroat, 4 Goldcrest, 3 Fieldfare, 139 Redwing, 23 Song Thrush, 5 Robin, 3 Redstart, Whinchat, 2 Wheatear, 2 Dunnock, Grey Wagtail, 4 White Wagtail (along with a Pied Wagtail and an alba wagtail), 198 Meadow Pipit, 100 Rock Pipit, 3 Chaffinch, 3 Brambling, 147 Twite, Linnet, 5 'Mealy Redpoll', Lesser Redpoll (plus 2 unidentified redpolls overhead), Siskin, Lapland Bunting, 126 Snow Bunting, Reed Bunting.

Other wildlife: Painted Lady, White-tailed Bumblebee (School).

Year list: 200
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Wednesday 2nd October 2019
Weather:
strong NW wind with some heavy showers in the morning.
No census, Sheep Hill and the Good Shepherd were also cancelled, although planes were running on schedule. A good day for trap repairs, with a large section of the Gully roof replaced and a patch up of the recent gale damage to the Plantation roof (whilst we wait on supplies for a proper re-roofing). All we need now are the birds.

Highlights:
Little Bunting: one still around, seen on School Brae.
Pectoral Sandpiper: 1CY still in South Harbour.

Other sightings:
Barnacle Goose, 4 Greylag Goose, 28 Pink-footed Goose, 2 Whooper Swan (Da Water), 2 Wigeon, Pintail, 'blue' Fulmar (South Light), Sooty Shearwater (South Light), Grey Heron, 8 Golden Plover, 34 Kittiwake, 6 Razorbill, Kestrel, Chiffchaff, Robin, Wheatear, 4 Lapland Bunting.

Year list: 200
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Tuesday 1st October 2019
Weather:
a quite strong NW wind, largely sunny but still cool, with some brief (but biting) showers.
It's getting rather quiet in parts of the Isle, hopefully a classic clear out before the next arrival! The forecast certainly looks like there could be some more interesting winds towards the end of the week. No transport today as the wind was too much for planes or the Good Shepherd.

Highlights:
Pectoral Sandpiper: still present, although mobile, being seen in Kirki Geo, South Harbour and over Utra.
Yellow-browed Warbler: Lower Leogh.

Other sightings:
Barnacle Goose, 32 Greylag Goose, 38 Pink-footed Goose, 2 Wigeon, Pintail, 16 Teal, Red-breasted Merganser, Grey Heron, Sparrowhawk (female, North Light), 3 Lapwing, 9 Golden Plover, 2 Bar-tailed Godwit, 165 Turnstone, Dunlin, 4 Jack Snipe, 41 Snipe, 51 Redshank, 24 Bonxie, Razorbill, Short-eared Owl (Utra, then appeared to fly out to sea), Kestrel, 2 Merlin, Peregrine, 170 Skylark, 4 Chiffchaff, 7 Blackcap, Garden Warbler, Lesser Whitethroat (one trapped in the Gully), 2 Goldcrest, 22 Redwing, 20 Song Thrush, 4 Robin, 2 Redstart, 3 Wheatear, Dunnock (Chalet), Grey Wagtail, 3 White Wagtail (along with 3 alba wagtail), 173 Meadow Pipit, 2 Tree Pipit, 109 Rock Pipit, 129 Twite, Lapland Bunting, 45 Snow Bunting, Reed Bunting.

Year list: 200
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Monday 30th September 2019
Weather:
a fairly fresh NNW wind, largely sunny although with a brisk shower or two moving through.
Distinctly wintry in feel, with a drop in temperatures and some wildfowl passage. Not too many other signs of arrivals, except for an increase in Snaa fuls.

Highlights:
Little Bunting: 2; sightings at Haa, Busta, Kenaby and Houll may have related to more than one individual, but are being counted as one for now, a second bird was at Bull's Park.
Yellow-browed Warbler: 2 (Haa).

Other sightings:
35 Barnacle Goose, 185 Greylag Goose, 31 Pink-footed Goose, 5 Whooper Swan (moved south in the morning), 20 Wigeon, 16 Teal, Long-tailed Duck (male in South Harbour; first of the autumn), Goldeneye, Grey Heron, Moorhen (Schoolton), Lapwing, 5 Golden Plover, 2 Bar-tailed Godwit, 13 Dunlin, 3 Jack Snipe, 33 Snipe, Common Sandpiper (Haven), 35 Redshank, 4 Guillemot, Razorbill, Short-eared Owl (Setter), 4 Kestrel, 4 Merlin, 2 Peregrine, 124 Skylark, 3 Willow Warbler, 6 Chiffchaff, Grasshopper Warbler (Meadow Burn), 11 Blackcap, Garden Warbler, 7 Goldcrest, 29 Redwing, 53 Song Thrush, 15 Robin, 6 Redstart, 15 Wheatear, 2 Dunnock, Grey Wagtail, 3 White Wagtail (along with 5 alba wagtail and 2 Pied Wagtail), 241 Meadow Pipit, 7 Tree Pipit, 96 Rock Pipit, 4 Chaffinch, 228 Twite, 2 Lapland Bunting, 80 Snow Bunting, 7 Reed Bunting.

Year list: 200
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Sunday 29th September 2019
Weather:
the wind was more in the N or NW, although it was fairly moderate and it was mostly a rather pleasant day.
A feeling of promise that never really delivered, but an enjoyable day's birding none the less. Barnacle Geese completed one of the more extreme decline in numbers seen on Fair Isle, with none present today!

Highlights:
Little Bunting: one in the Busta rig.
Pectoral Sandpiper: what was presumably the Easter Lother bird was at Kirki Geo.
Yellow-browed Warbler: 4; singles at Meadow Burn, North Naaversgill, North Raeva and Bull's Park.

Other sightings:
2 Greylag Goose, 29 Pink-footed Goose, 7 Wigeon, Pintail, 9 Teal, Goldeneye, Red-breasted Merganser, Red-throated Diver (adult still in Furse), Grey Heron, 2 Sparrowhawk, Moorhen (Schoolton), 3 Lapwing, 3 Golden Plover, Grey Plover (over the Gully), 4 Bar-tailed Godwit, 14 Dunlin, 6 Jack Snipe, 53 Snipe, Common Sandpiper (Haven), 35 Redshank, c15 Great Skua (most of the population have now cleared out, which feels somewhat early), 2 Razorbill, Short-eared Owl (Peat Diggings), 3 Kestrel, 3 Merlin, 166 Skylark, 4 Swallow, 6 Willow Warbler, 14 Chiffchaff, 12 Blackcap, 3 Garden Warbler, Lesser Whitethroat, 7 Goldcrest, 2 Fieldfare, 69 Redwing, 65 Song Thrush, Spotted Flycatcher, 17 Robin, 5 Redstart, 2 Whinchat, 12 Wheatear, 2 Dunnock, flava wagtail, Grey Wagtail, 6 White Wagtail (along with 5 alba wagtail and 3 Pied Wagtail), 353 Meadow Pipit, 5 Tree Pipit, 104 Rock Pipit, 11 Chaffinch, Brambling, 205 Twite, 4 Linnet (including two with Snow Buntings on top of Ward Hill), 35 Snow Bunting, 7 Reed Bunting.

Year list: 200
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Saturday 28th September 2019
Weather:
a fairly light NE breeze, mostly a reasonable day, although fog during part of the morning that brought some rain (and had an impact on census counts as parts of North disappeared).
No planes, but the Good Shepherd IV did sail. A feeling of a bit of a clear out, although some species had increased.

Highlights:
Wryneck: near Single Dyke in the morning.
Yellow-browed Warbler: 7; singles at Lower Leogh, Field, Haa, Lower Stoneybrek, Gilly Burn, Grey Geo and North Feltsigeo.

Other sightings:
1,429 Barnacle Goose (a new record count; most were seen moving south off South Light prior to 9am), 2 Greylag Goose, 32 Pink-footed Goose, 13 Wigeon, Pintail, 17 Teal, Tufted Duck, Goldeneye, Red-throated Diver (adult, Furse), 'blue' Fulmar (Good Shepherd), 7 Grey Heron, 3 Sparrowhawk, 6 Golden Plover, 4 Bar-tailed Godwit, 2 Ruff, 13 Dunlin, 5 Jack Snipe, 70 Snipe, Common Sandpiper (Haven), 47 Redshank, 5 Razorbill, Woodpigeon, 6 Kestrel, Peregrine, 155 Skylark, 11 Swallow, 2 House Martin, 4 Willow Warbler, 13 Chiffchaff, Grasshopper Warbler (one in Meadow Burn), 4 Blackcap, Garden Warbler, Lesser Whitethroat, 18 Goldcrest, 2 Fieldfare, 113 Redwing, 139 Song Thrush, 2 Spotted Flycatcher, 30 Robin, 9 Redstart, 4 Whinchat, 32 Wheatear, Dunnock, 3 Grey Wagtail, 5 White Wagtail (along with 10 alba wagtail and 2 Pied Wagtail), 469 Meadow Pipit, 10 Tree Pipit, 131 Rock Pipit (including birds seen from the Good Shepherd), 4 Chaffinch, 100 Twite, Linnet, 17 Lapland Bunting, 12 Snow Bunting, 2 Reed Bunting.




Barnacle Geese off South Light (top) and Bar-tailed Godwits (with Dunlin), Muckle Uri Geo (both Richard Cope)

Other wildlife:
Painted Lady, Red Sword Grass (Schoolton)

Year list: 200
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Friday 27th September 2019
Weather:
ESE wind, but much reduced from recent days. Some low cloud around the hills at times, but mostly a fine day.
A far more enjoyable day for being out and about and plenty birds about, with several species seeing an increase in numbers (often to the highest count of the autumn so far). There were finally planes (although not until late in the afternoon), so Max arrived for his final stint of volunteering this season. Sarah and Tom completed their final censuses after some sterling efforts (sadly, with no big rarity to see them off) and will be off on the Good Shepherd in the morning. Thanks to them both and we look forward to seeing them again.

Highlights:
Wryneck: one in the Gully.
Little Bunting: one at Field Ditch, possibly the same bird as seen there on 23rd.
Pectoral Sandpiper: still present and showing well at Easter Lother.
Yellow-browed Warbler: 12; singles at North Shirva, Kenaby, Grey Geo, Moss Geo, Easter Lother, North Light, Guidicum, Gunnawark, Chalet, Houll, Taft and Hoini.

Other sightings:
53 Barnacle Goose, 4 Greylag Goose, 36 Pink-footed Goose, 31 Wigeon, Pintail, 34 Teal, Tufted Duck, Goldeneye, Red-throated Diver, 5 Grey Heron, 2 Cormorant, 2 Sparrowhawk, Moorhen (first of the autumn), 4 Golden Plover, Grey Plover (one flew north over Swazie Geo; first of the year),4 Bar-tailed Godwit, 2 Ruff, 9 Dunlin, 6 Jack Snipe, 75 Snipe, Common Sandpiper (Haven), 70 Redshank, 2 Lesser Black-backed Gull, Woodpigeon, Short-eared Owl, 7 Kestrel, Merlin, Peregrine (female), 220 Skylark, 13 Swallow, 3 House Martin, 8 Willow Warbler, 14 Chiffchaff, 5 Blackcap, Garden Warbler, 15 Goldcrest, 9 Ring Ouzel, Fieldfare, 103 Redwing, 192 Song Thrush, 27 Robin, 16 Redstart, 2 Whinchat, 26 Wheatear, 4 Dunnock, 2 Grey Wagtail, 12 White Wagtail (along with 6 alba wagtail and 3 Pied Wagtail), 638 Meadow Pipit, 8 Tree Pipit (no Olive-backed Pipits though!), 157 Rock Pipit, 12 Chaffinch, 227 Twite, 4 Linnet, Lesser Redpoll, 13 Lapland Bunting, 7 Reed Bunting.

Other wildlife:
6 Risso's Dolphin (moving distantly NE off Fugli Stack).
Painted Lady, Silver Y
Coconut (one washed up in Busta Geo!)

Year list: 200
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Thursday 26th September 2019
Weather:
ESE gales, easing in the evening. Heavy rain from the morning until early in the evening.
With a shipping forecast of ESE gales and heavy rain coming to pass, it was no surprise that conditions weren't birdable. By the evening, things were a bit better and a few new birds were found. There was even a sighting of blue sky late on, there's been no flights since Saturday and no Good Shepherd sailing since Friday, so the forecast of a couple of calmer days is welcome.

Highlights:
Pectoral Sandpiper: a 1CY on Easter Lother Water. The first record since 2017 and, subject to acceptance, the 36th record for the Isle.
Little Bunting: still present, mostly around Houll.

Pectoral Sandpiper, Easter Lother Water (Tom Gale)

Other sightings:
686 Barnacle Goose, 4 Greylag Goose, 46 Wigeon, Tufted Duck, Goldeneye, 13 Grey Heron, Cormorant, Sparrowhawk (1CY male trapped in the Gully), 2 Golden Plover, 3 Bar-tailed Godwit, 2 Ruff, 3 Jack Snipe, 77 Common Gull, 4 Lesser Black-backed Gull, Arctic Tern (1CY, South Light), Woodpigeon, 5 Kestrel, 13 Swallow, 2 House Martin, 10 Chiffchaff (including four at Easter Lother and 3 at Malcolm's Head; highest count of the autumn), 2 Reed Warbler (Burkle and North Haven), Blackcap, Ring Ouzel (Malcolm's Head), 9 Robin, 2 Redstart, 2 Whinchat, Dunnock (Malcolm's Head), 2 Linnet, Redpoll sp. (Plantation), 2 Lapland Bunting.

Year list: 199
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Wednesday 25th September 2019
Weather:
much of a muchness (but the good sort) with strong SE winds continuing and a grey start wit hcloud then dropping and some drizzly conditions in the afternoon.
Perhaps a slightly disappointing day in terms of new arrivals, but a few more bits (especially on the cliffs) and the promise was always there, which is half the fun of birding! Tomorrow looks like it could be hard work, with SE gales and fog giving way to rain, but let's see what happens...

Highlights:
Little Bunting: one still at Schoolton.
Red-backed Shrike: one still in Swarzie Geo.
Yellow-browed Warbler: 8; Tineside, Guidicum, Loangie, Dronger, Dog Geo, Malcolm's Head (2) and Lower Stoneybrek.

Other sightings:
910 Barnacle Goose, 4 Greylag Goose, 34 Pink-footed Goose, 53 Wigeon, Pintail, 47 Teal, 2 Tufted Duck, Goldeneye, 6 Grey Heron, 3 Cormorant, 2 Sparrowhawk, 4 Golden Plover, 3 Bar-tailed Godwit, Ruff, 6 Jack Snipe, 85 Snipe, Guillemot, Woodpigeon, 6 Kestrel, 162 Skylark, 13 Swallow, House Martin, 4 Willow Warbler, 4 Chiffchaff, Reed Warbler (Burkle), 2 Blackcap, Garden Warbler, Lesser Whitethroat, 9 Goldcrest, Ring Ouzel (male, Gunnawark), Fieldfare, 33 Redwing, 137 Song Thrush, 11 Robin, Pied Flycatcher, 10 Redstart, 4 Whinchat, 27 Wheatear, flava Wagtail (Boini Mire), 3 Grey Wagtail, 5 White Wagtail (along with 3 alba wagtail and 7 Pied Wagtail), 659 Meadow Pipit, 3 Chaffinch, 95 Twite, 2 Linnet, Lesser Redpoll, 11 Lapland Bunting, 2 Reed Bunting.

Year list: 198
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Tuesday 24th September 2019
Weather:
strong SE winds, some fog patches early on, then cleared (although remaining grey) before low cloud, fog and drizzle returned in the afternoon.
The second half of the day was virtually wiped out by the weather again, which was frustrating given that there were clearly more birds in. Still, a few nice bits, and promise of more in the next few days still. 'Log on Tour' was at Burkle (complete with hot chocolate and home bakes, a nice traditional touch), many thanks to Hollie and Deryk for hosting us.

Highlights:
Red-backed Shrike: one in Swarzie Geo.
Common Rosefinch: one at Setter.
Little Bunting: one still at Schoolton.
Yellow-browed Warbler: 10; two at Tineside and singles at Upper Leogh, North Shirva, Dog Geo, Linni Geo, South Raeva, Burrashield, Loangie and Skinner's Glig.

Other sightings:
810 Barnacle Goose (with sightings of darvic birds and the movement of flocks suggesting some turnover since yesterday), 3 Greylag Goose, 36 Pink-footed Goose, 47 Wigeon, 35 Teal, Goldeneye, 8 Grey Heron, 2 Cormorant, Sparrowhawk, Water Rail (Burkle; first of the autumn), 8 Golden Plover, 3 Bar-tailed Godwit, 3 Ruff, 7 Jack Snipe, Guillemot, Woodpigeon, Short-eared Owl (Kirki Mire; first of the autumn), 5 Kestrel, Peregrine, 172 Skylark, 14 Swallow, Willow Warbler, 4 Chiffchaff (the first time Chiffchaffs have outnumbered Willow Warblers this autumn), Reed Warbler (Burkle), Grasshopper Warbler (Boini Mire), 4 Blackcap, 2 Lesser Whitethroat, 11 Goldcrest, Ring Ouzel (Vaasetter), 4 Fieldfare, 47 Redwing, 128 Song Thrush, 18 Robin, Pied Flycatcher, 5 Redstart, 6 Whinchat, 27 Wheatear, 5 Grey Wagtail, 11 White Wagtail (along with 6 alba wagtail and 6 Pied Wagtail), 615 Meadow Pipit, Tree Pipit (Kirki Mire), Brambling (Obs; first of the autumn), 176 Twite, 2 Linnet, Siskin (Schoolton; first of the autumn), 10 Lapland Bunting, Reed Bunting (Chapel Plantation; first of the autumn).

Other wildlife:
3 Red Admiral.

Year list: 198
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Monday 23rd September 2019
Weather:
the strong SE wind continued, possibly freshening slightly during the day. Although the day started murky, it was at least clear until mid-afternoon, when drizzly fog returned.
Birds in! Lots of geese, but the easterly wind brought plenty of migrants. Several species either debuted for the autumn or recorded their highest counts of the season so far as the birding was genuinely exciting. The weather closing in didn't help matters, as most of the Isle disappeared into the murk from about 3pm, but it was great fun until then. If the fog lifts in the morning, there's surely hope of more to be found, as there appeared to be more things arriving even in the gloom late on...

Highlights:
Red-flanked Bluetail: one at Wester Lother (which was generally very low down the cliff). The 18th record for Fair Isle (subject to acceptance), of which this is the 12th in the last ten years.
Red-breasted Flycatcher: one also at Wester Lother; first of the year.
Little Bunting: 2; singles at Houll and Field.
Yellow-browed Warbler: 8; four at Easter Lother and singles at Wester Lother, Setter, Linni Geo and Dog Geo (making it the commonest warbler of the day).

Red-flanked Bluetail, Wester Lother (Tom Gale).

Other sightings:
952 Barnacle Goose (numbers built up through the day and gathered at Skadan; 3rd highest count for the Isle), 3 Greylag Goose, 37 Pink-footed Goose, 24 Wigeon, Pintail (Field Pond), 24 Teal, Goldeneye (one in Hjukni Geo; first of the year), 3 Grey Heron, 3 Cormorant, 2 Sparrowhawk, 3 Golden Plover, 3 Bar-tailed Godwit (the highest count since 2013), 177 Turnstone, Ruff, 3 Purple Sandpiper, 2 Jack Snipe (singles at Hegri Burn and Boini Mire), 69 Snipe, 61 Common Gull, Guillemot, Woodpigeon, 3 Kestrel, 141 Skylark, 12 Swallow, 7 Willow Warbler, 3 Chiffchaff, Grasshopper Warbler (seen briefly at Schoolton again), 3 Blackcap, 2 Lesser Whitethroat, 7 Goldcrest, Blackbird (female near the Plantation; first of the autumn), 3 Fieldfare, 6 Redwing (first of the autumn), 20 Song Thrush, 7 Robin, 3 Pied Flycatcher, 6 Redstart, 6 Whinchat, Stonechat, 23 Wheatear, 7 White Wagtail (along with 8 alba wagtail and 5 Pied Wagtail), 566 Meadow Pipit, 2 Brambling (Kirn o' Skroo; first of the autumn), 2 Chaffinch, 133 Twite, 5 Linnet, 5 Lapland Bunting.

Barnacle Geese, Skadan (David Parnaby)

Other wildlife:
Risso's Dolphin (off South Light).

Year list: 198
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Sunday 22nd September 2019
Weather:
a strong SE wind, but thick fog for most of the day reduced visibility severely.
With fog blanketing the Isle, there wasn't full census (although coverage was still good), but it had clearly stopped birds finding us, with only a couple of new things to report. Dave and Josie hosted Log at South Light and very nice it was too, with cake to celebrate a visiting ex-AW's birthday!
It looks like tomorrow will be clearer, which is good news.

Highlights:
Little Bunting: one at Schoolton; second of the autumn.
Yellow-browed Warbler: one still in Easter Lother.

Other sightings:
10 Barnacle Goose (first of the autumn), 3 Greylag Goose, 37 Pink-footed Goose, 9 Wigeon, 9 Teal, Grey Heron, Cormorant, 3 Golden Plover, Razorbill, Woodpigeon, 2 Kestrel, 4 Swallow, 4 Willow Warbler, Chiffchaff, Reed Warbler (Burkle), Grasshopper Warbler (Schoolton), 3 Blackcap, Garden Warbler, Lesser Whitethroat, 4 Goldcrest, 2 Fieldfare, Song Thrush, Pied Flycatcher, 3 Whinchat, Stonechat (Gilsetter), Grey Wagtail, Lesser Redpoll (one trapped in the Plantation; first of the autumn), 15 Lapland Bunting.

Other wildlife:
Red Admiral, Painted Lady.

Year list: 195
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Saturday 21st September 2019
Weather:
the wind started fresh and moved round from SSE to a more SE direction as the day went on. Mostly sunny at first, although some low cloud started to linger around the hills and offshore as the day went on.
Mostly quite slow going, but with some birds new in and a real feeling of promise as the odd bird kept popping up during the day.

Highlights:
Richard's Pipit: one over North Naaversgill then Upper stoneybrek; first of the year.
Yellow-browed Warbler: a vocal individual at Easter Lother in the evening; first of the autumn (but not the first of the year, following one on 1st May). The latest autumn arrival date since 2012.

Other sightings:
3 Greylag Goose, 32 Pink-footed Goose, 9 Wigeon, Pintail (Da Water; first of the autumn), 14 Teal, 3 Grey Heron, 3 Cormorant, 6 Golden Plover, Guillemot, Woodpigeon, Kestrel, 171 Skylark, 6 Swallow, 7 Willow Warbler, Chiffchaff (still at the Obs), Reed Warbler (Haa and Burkle), 3 Blackcap, Garden Warbler, 2 Goldcrest, 2 Fieldfare (the lingering bird at Quoy and the first autumn migrant in Kirn o' Skroo), Song Thrush, Pied Flycatcher (South Raeva), Redstart (Hesti and Steensi Geo), 3 Whinchat, Stonechat (at the Vaadal; first of the autumn), 17 Wheatear, 2 Grey Wagtail (first of the autumn), 12 White Wagtail (along with 8 alba wagtail and 4 Pied Wagtail), 629 Meadow Pipit, 105 Rock Pipit, 153 Twite, 4 Linnet, Lesser Redpoll (one trapped in the Plantation; first of the autumn), 8 Lapland Bunting.

Other wildlife:
3 Risso's Dolphin (seen briefly off South Light)
Grey Seal (the first pup of the year was sadly found dead in Mid Geo).
3 Painted Lady, 2 Silver Y.

Year list: 195
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Friday 20th September 2019
Weather:
a murky start quickly gave way to sunshine, whilst the wind gradually started to swing from the SW towards the SE (bringing fog with it by late afternoon)....
After a bit of a clear our recently, it was clear that there were a few birds in today. Not a bad start, and hopefully we're not being greedy in saying there should be more to come this week. Just in time for our volunteers Tom and Sarah who leave on Thursday and a week on Saturday respectively.

Sightings:
3 Greylag Goose, 32 Pink-footed Goose, 8 Wigeon, Pintail (Da Water; first of the autumn), 3 Teal, Grey Heron, 2 Cormorant, 3 Golden Plover, Whimbrel, Black-tailed Godwit, Arctic Skua (pale phase adult at airstrip), Kestrel, Merlin, 179 Skylark, 3 Swallow, 7 Willow Warbler, 3 Chiffchaff, Reed Warbler (Haa and Burkle), 4 Blackcap, 2 Garden Warbler, Lesser Whitethroat, 4 Goldcrest, Fieldfare (Quoy bird still present), 2 Song Thrush, Spotted Flycatcher (North Light), Redstart (Kirn o' Skroo; just the second of the autumn), 2 Whinchat, 22 Wheatear, 15 White Wagtail (along with 7 alba wagtail and 5 Pied Wagtail), 598 Meadow Pipit, 116 Rock Pipit, 171 Twite, 2 Linnet, 12 Lapland Bunting.

Other wildlife:
7 Red Admiral, 10 Painted Lady, 3 Silver Y.

Year list: 194
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Thursday 19th September 2019
Weather:
a fresh SW wind, with low cloud for most of the day bringing a few heavy showers.
Pretty quiet again on the bird front, but it was all eyes to the sea as we finally had a showy group of everyone's favourite cetaceans.

Sightings:
3 Greylag Goose, 13 Pink-footed Goose, 16 Wigeon, 11 Teal, Red-throated Diver, 4 Grey Heron, Cormorant, 12 Golden Plover, 42 Snipe, 51 Redshank, Arctic Skua (dark phase adult), Guillemot, 4 Razorbill, 113 Skylark, 4 Willow Warbler, Reed Warbler (Haa), Garden Warbler, Lesser Whitethroat, Song Thrush, 2 Whinchat, 21 Wheatear, 12 White Wagtail (along with 5 alba wagtail and 2 Pied Wagtail), 618 Meadow Pipit, 82 Rock Pipit, 169 Twite, 4 Linnet, 7 Lapland Bunting.

Other wildlife:
Killer Whale: a group of four (including three bulls) were found off Lerness around midday then heading north up the west coast. After rounding North Light, they headed slowly south off Buness and were seen in the early evening off South Light before again moving up the west coast and spending time off North Light. They appeared to be fish-eaters and didn't come close into the cliffs (although still gave reasonable views). We've not been able to match them to known individuals yet, but we're hoping that somebody may be able to. It's just the second sighting of Killer Whales this year, which makes it a rather quiet year for the species.

Killer Whale, North Light (David Parnaby)

Year list: 194
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Wednesday 18th September 2019
Weather: calm, with just a light NE breeze (although we're somewhat between winds, so not too much should be read into the east part of it). Sunny and a pleasant break from the recent weather.
The Good Shepherd IV sailed for the first time for over a week and there were evidently a few birds about, including two year-ticks (just the second and third of the month following the Common Tern back on 11th - which is not exactly what you hope for from the first two and a half weeks of September). Still, one of them was a Fair Isle vargrant and we're all we're all set up nicely for the autumn to start properly any day now. With a few birders in, the first 'public Log' of the autumn was held at the Hall, complete with homebakes!

Highlights:
Nightjar: one flew over the Obs garden at 1930hrs before circling back and heading north towards Roskillie. If accepted, it represents the 31st Nightjar for Fair Isle, but just the sixth in the autumn (the last one of which was a juvenile trapped on 26th September 2013).

Other sightings:
3 Greylag Goose, 73 Pink-footed Goose, 10 Wigeon, 5 Teal, Red-throated Diver, 2 'blue Fulmar' (a single off South Light then one in the afternoon that lingered off North Light and the fog horn), Slavonian Grebe (one in South Harbour; first of the year), 3 Grey Heron, 3 Sparrowhawk, 28 Golden Plover, Whimbrel, 47 Redshank, 4 Razorbill, Woodpigeon, 2 Kestrel, Merlin, 2 Peregrine (male and female), 5 Carrion Crow, 145 Skylark, 4 Willow Warbler, Chiffchaff (the summering bird still at the Obs), Reed Warbler (Haa), 2 Blackcap, 2 Garden Warbler, Lesser Whitethroat, Fieldfare (Quoy), Song Thrush (first of the autumn and, apart from Ring Ouzel on 1st September, the first migrant thrush of the autumn), 3 Whinchat, 19 Wheatear, 123 House Sparrow, 17 White Wagtail (along with 5 alba wagtail and 3 Pied Wagtail), 641 Meadow Pipit, 109 Rock Pipit, 118 Twite, 21 Linnet (the highest count since the remarkable invasion in autumn 1995 that peaked at 100 birds), 12 Lapland Bunting (birds scattered across the Isle), Snow Bunting (Ward Hill).

Other wildlife:
2 Painted Lady.

Year list: 194
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Tuesday 17th September 2019
Weather: easing winds from the west, largely sunny.
The plane made it in, but still no boat. A nicer day, and a few birds starting to emerge, but little real sign of movement.

Sightings:
9 Greylag Goose, 9 Pink-footed Goose, 15 Wigeon, 3 Teal, Red-breasted Merganser, 2 Grey Heron, Cormorant, Sparrowhawk (female), 41 Golden Plover, Black-tailed Godwit, 40 Redshank, 3 Kestrel, Merlin, Peregrine (female), Woodpigeon (Haven), 135 Skylark, 5 Willow Warbler, Reed Warbler, Blackcap, Garden Warbler, Lesser Whitethroat, Goldcrest, Fieldfare (Quoy), Whinchat, 31 Wheatear, Dunnock (Obs), 8 White Wagtail (along with 4 alba wagtails and 5 Pied Wagtail), 592 Meadow Pipit, 77 Rock Pipit, 138 Twite, 3 Linnet, 8 Lapland Bunting.

Year list: 192
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Monday 16th September 2019
Weather: Strong winds from a westerly based direction still, with some showery conditions.
The wind just eased enough to squeeze a plane in mid-morning, but it was generally a continuation of the unpleasantness of the weekend. Back to full census though, which was nice, although not massively productive.

Highlights:
Barred Warbler: Stackhoull; presumably a lingering bird.
Marsh Harrier: still present.

Other sightings:
11 Greylag Goose, 144 Pink-footed Goose, 16 Wigeon, 4 Teal, 2 Red-breasted Merganser, 9 Red-throated Diver, Sparrowhawk (female), 46 Golden Plover, Black-tailed Godwit, 144 Turnstone, 2 Purple Sandpiper, 72 Redshank, 2 Kestrel, Acrtic Skua (no sign of the lingering juvenile, bit one was seen off South Light), 14 Razorbill, Woodpigeon (Haven; first of the month), 141 Skylark, 5 Willow Warbler, Chiffchaff, Blackcap, 3 Garden Warbler, Lesser Whitethroat, Fieldfare (Quoy), 2 Whinchat, 38 Wheatear, Dunnock (Obs), 10 White Wagtail (along with 4 alba wagtails and 6 Pied Wagtail), 889 Meadow Pipit, 88 Rock Pipit, 74 Twite, 3 Linnet, 11 Lapland Bunting, Snow Bunting (Ward Hill).

Year list: 192
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Sunday 15th September 2019
Weather: Westerly gales, easing during the day, heavy showers.
Another day with the weather putting paid to regular census. It feels like there should be something blowing in from across the Atlantic, but other than some Icelandic wildfowl, there's not much else been found so far.

Highlights:
Marsh Harrier: still present and drifting around in the south.

Other sightings:
3 Greylag Goose, 225 Pink-footed Goose, 2 Whooper Swan (adults over Gilsetter), 14 Wigeon, 5 Teal, Red-breasted Merganser, Red-throated Diver (South Light), Manx Shearwater (South Light), Sparrowhawk, 35 Golden Plover, Whimbrel, Black-tailed Godwit, 150 Turnstone, 6 Knot, 13 Dunlin, 3 Purple Sandpiper, Lesser Black-backed Gull (first record since 9th Sep), Kestrel, Merlin, Arctic Skua (juvenile still at the airstrip), 2 Guillemot, 8 Razorbill, Wood Warbler (presumably the same bird re-emerged from the Houll thistles), 4 Willow Warbler, Chiffchaff, Blackcap, 2 Garden Warbler, Fieldfare (Quoy), 2 Whinchat, Yellow Wagtail (unidentified flava subspecies), 3 Linnet, 4 Lapland Bunting, Snow Bunting (airstrip; first of the autumn).

Year list: 192
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Saturday 14th September 2019
Weather: Horrible. A strengthening SW gale, with heavy rain arriving during the morning.
No boat (or full census due to the weather), but there was a morning plane, so we were able to get Sarah Harris as the latest volunteer to help us through the autumn. Not the best of times to arrive from a birding point of view in all honesty, but if anything turns up, it'll have a good chance of being something big!

Sightings:
85 Pink-footed Goose, 6 Wigeon, Red-breasted Merganser, 2 Purple Sandpiper, Kestrel, Arctic Skua (just one lingering juvenile at the airstrip), Razorbill.

Year list: 192
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Friday 13th September 2019
Weather: The wind remained a fairly breezy W or SW, a few showers, but mostly sunny.
Planes made it, but not many birds did (although the pinky passage was nice and there was some movement at sea). Looks like things will get worse before they get better...

Highlights:
Marsh Harrier: still present.

Other sightings:
365 Pink-footed Goose, 6 Wigeon, 8 Teal, Red-breasted Merganser, 2 Red-throated Diver, 6 Sooty Shearwater (South Light), Manx Shearwater (South Light), 7 Golden Plover, Black-tailed Godwit (Buness), 17 Dunlin, Purple Sandpiper, 0 Arctic Tern, 3 Kestrel, 25 Razorbill, 5 Willow Warbler, Chiffchaff, Blackcap, Goldcrest, Fieldfare, 4 Whinchat, Dunnock (Obs), 3 Linnet, 8 Lapland Bunting.

Year list: 192
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Thursday 12th September 2019
Weather: strong SW winds becoming more W later. Heavy showers, some sustained at first.
Census was washed out mid-morning as conditions become somewhat horrible. There was little in the way of new arrivals, although presumably if there is anything turns up in this weather, it's got a good chance of being pretty impressive. No Good Shepherd sailing today as the sea was pretty horrible (although after a Sunday lamb run, Monday to Lerwick and Tuesday lamb run, it had been a pretty busy week already), but planes did made it. More strong westerlies coming up (and a day of rain on Saturday as well by teh look of it), so let's see what it brings...

Highlights:
Barred Warbler: one still at Stackhoull.
Marsh Harrier: the juvenile still present and wandering around the Isle.

Other sightings:
3 Greylag Goose, 6 Wigeon, 13 Teal, Red-breasted Merganser, Red-throated Diver (South Light), 3 Sooty Shearwater (South Light), 5 Oystercatcher, 2 Knot, 5 Sanderling, 7 Dunlin, Purple Sandpiper, 3 Arctic Tern, 4 Kestrel, Peregrine, Guillemot, 8 Razorbill, Swallow, 7 Willow Warbler, 3 Garden Warbler, Lesser Whitethroat, 2 Goldcrest (Gully), 5 Whinchat, Dunnock (Obs), Tree Pipit (Houll), 4 Linnet, 2 Lapland Bunting.

Other wildlife:
3 Painted Lady.

Year list: 192
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Wednesday 11th September 2019
Weather: SW6-7, heavy rain overnight eased by the morning, with occasional showers although mostly sunny.

Highlights:
Red-backed Shrike: juvenile still at Setter.
Common Rosefinch: one still at the Haa.
Marsh Harrier: the juvenile still present.

Other sightings:
3 Greylag Goose, 10 Wigeon, 15 Teal, Red-breasted Merganser, Manx Shearwater (Buness), Cormorant, Sparrowhawk, 7 Oystercatcher, 6 Golden Plover, 23 Ringed Plover, 87 Turnstone, Knot, Sanderling, 9 Dunlin, 2 Purple Sandpiper, Green Sandpiper, 59 Redshank, Common Tern (one in Furse; first of the year of this increasingly rarely recorded species), 7 Arctic Tern, 6 Kestrel, Merlin, 87 Skylark, Wood Warbler (Midway), 15 Willow Warbler, Chiffchaff, Blackcap, 3 Garden Warbler, Lesser Whitethroat, 2 Goldcrest (Gully), 5 Whinchat, 47 Wheatear, 17 White Wagtail (along with 7 alba wagtails and 2 Pied Wagtail), 492 Meadow Pipit, 103 Rock Pipit, 142 Twite, 5 Lapland Bunting.

Other wildlife:
Common Seal (South Harbour; first record since February 2017). Harbour Porpoise (one washed up dead in Hjukni Geo).
6 Painted Lady.

Year list: 192
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Tuesday 10th September 2019
Weather: A light westerly at first going SW then SE by the evening, with the strength increasing during the day. Cloudy with drizzle at first then dry throughout the day, with regular sunny spells until late evening when heavy rain set in.

Highlights:
Red-backed Shrike: one at Bull's Park in the evening.
Wryneck: one at Lower Leogh.
Barred Warbler: 2; singles still at Stackhoull and Haa.
Common Rosefinch: 2; one at Bull's Park with various sightings in the south-east referring to at least one other individual.
Marsh Harrier: the juvenile was seen at Utra early in the morning then roamed the Isle.

Other sightings:
5 Wigeon, 13 Teal, Red-breasted Merganser, Cormorant, Sparrowhawk (one at Easter Lother ate a juvenile Starling), 3 Oystercatcher, 3 Golden Plover, 31 Ringed Plover, 50 Turnstone, Knot, 3 Sanderling, 13 Dunlin, Green Sandpiper, 3 Arctic Tern, 7 Kestrel, 2 Merlin, 4 Arctic Skua (most breeding birds having now left the Isle), 91 Skylark, Sand Martin, 2 Swallow (both passage birds heading south), Wood Warbler (Houll), 20 Willow Warbler, 2 Chiffchaff, 2 Reed Warbler, 2 Blackcap, 9 Garden Warbler (joint highest count of the autumn), 3 Lesser Whitethroat, 6 Goldcrest (highest count of the autumn), Fieldfare (Quoy), Spotted Flycatcher (Gully), 7 Pied Flycatcher, Redstart (Lower Station; first of the autumn), 10 Whinchat, 86 Wheatear, Dunnock (Obs), Yellow Wagtail (flava wagtails at Homisdale and Mast; first of the autumn), 27 White Wagtail (along with 8 alba wagtails and 3 Pied Wagtail), 539 Meadow Pipit, 196 Rock Pipit, 213 Twite, 2 Linnet, 9 Lapland Bunting.

Other wildlife:
6 Red Admiral, 17 Painted Lady, 2 Silver Y, White-tailed Bumblebee (Obs).

Year list: 191
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Monday 9th September 2019
Weather: SE 4-5 becoming S 3 later, variable cloud with some sunny spells.
Not the large arrival that was hoped for, but a few new bits and pieces and a pleasant day all in all. A bit of light drifty weather tomorrow might bring a few more birds as well.

Highlights:
Icterine Warbler: one at Chalet; the seventh of the autumn.
Wryneck: one around the Plantation.
Barred Warbler: 3; singles still at Schoolton and Stackhoull and a new arrival at Chalet.
Common Rosefinch: one still at the Haa.
Marsh Harrier: a juvenile over Gilstter in the afternoon then moved to Da Water in the evening.

Other sightings:
Wigeon, 11 Teal, Red-breasted Merganser, Grey Heron, 5 Oystercatcher, 4 Golden Plover, 31 Ringed Plover, Whimbrel (South Harbour), 56 Turnstone, 4 Sanderling, 10 Dunlin, Purple Sandpiper, Lesser Black-backed Gull, 3 Arctic Tern, 3 Kestrel, Merlin, Peregrine (adult male), 98 Skylark, 5 Swallow, 32 Willow Warbler, 2 Chiffchaff, 2 Reed Warbler, 3 Blackcap, 8 Garden Warbler, 3 Lesser Whitethroat, 2 Whitethroat, 3 Goldcrest, Fieldfare (Quoy), Spotted Flycatcher, 2 Robin (both summering birds), 13 Pied Flycatcher, 8 Whinchat, 57 Wheatear, Dunnock (the Obs bird relocated to the Plantation), 17 White Wagtail (along with 9 alba wagtails and 3 Pied Wagtail), 643 Meadow Pipit, Tree Pipit (Boini Mire), 169 Rock Pipit, 111 Twite, Linnet, 10 Lapland Bunting.

Other wildlife:
4 Red Admiral, 2 Painted Lady, 5 Silver Y, White-tailed Bumblebee.

Year list: 191
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Sunday 8th September 2019
Weather: a calm start with a freshening SSE or SE wind developing through the day. Largely sunny with a few cloudier spells.
After a clear our yesterday, in which several species recorded their lowest total of the month so far, it was a much better day today. A reasonable number of migrants included several scarcities, with the hope that tomorrow may bring more (before westerlies look set to return).

Highlights:
Little Bunting: one flew past the Wirvie Burn before being relocated at Furse. The first of the autumn.
Wryneck: 3; singles at North Shirva, Skadan and Haa.
Barred Warbler: 3; singles at Stackhoull, Lower Leogh and Schoolton.
Common Rosefinch: 2; singles at Furse and at least one in the south-east around the Schoolton/Haa area.

Wryneck, Haa (David Parnaby)

Other sightings:
Wigeon, 8 Teal, Grey Heron, 3 Cormorant, 6 Oystercatcher, 6 Golden Plover, 24 Ringed Plover, 57 Turnstone, 3 Sanderling, 8 Dunlin, 41 Snipe, 59 Redshank, Arctic Tern, Merlin (first of the month), Peregrine, 2 Razorbill, 111 Skylark (highest count of the autumn), 7 Swallow, 31 Willow Warbler (highest count of the autumn), 2 Chiffchaff, 5 Garden Warbler (highest count of the month), 5 Lesser Whitethroat (highest count of the autumn), 4 Goldcrest (highest count of the autumn), Fieldfare (Quoy), Spotted Flycatcher (first of the month), 12 Pied Flycatcher (highest count of the autumn), 4 Whinchat, 55 Wheatear, Dunnock (Obs), 10 White Wagtail (along with 7 alba wagtails and 5 Pied Wagtail), 513 Meadow Pipit, Tree Pipit (first of the autumn), 123 Rock Pipit, 215 Twite (highest count of the autumn), 4 Linnet, 6 Lapland Bunting.

Other wildlife:
10+ Risso's Dolphin (3 miles north of the Isle, seen from the Good Shepherd IV), 3 Painted Lady.

Year list: 191
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Saturday 7th September 2019
Weather: a fresh SW wind easing through the day, with a rather pleasant sunny afternoon.

Sightings:
Wigeon, 11 Teal, 2 Red-throated Diver (past South Light), Grey Heron, 6 Oystercatcher, Golden Plover, 14 Ringed Plover, 43 Turnstone, 4 Sanderling, 14 Dunlin, 55 Redshank, 3 Arctic Tern, Kestrel, Peregrine, 5 Razorbill, 76 Skylark, 4 Swallow, 6 Willow Warbler, 2 Chiffchaff, 2 Blackcap, Fieldfare (Quoy), 6 Whinchat, 51 Wheatear, Dunnock (Haa), 10 White Wagtail (along with 8 alba wagtails and 5 Pied Wagtail), 475 Meadow Pipit, 92 Rock Pipit, 130 Twite, Linnet, 3 Lapland Bunting.

Other wildlife:
Painted Lady, White-tailed Bumblebee (Schoolhouse).

Year list: 191
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Friday 6th September 2019
Weather: another windy, westerly day, with a few horrible showers with low cloud passing through in the afternoon.
A fairly quiet day all in all. Having got the boat in on Wednesday, it was the end of the season for the Oysterplant fence today. A few net rides around the Isle have been cut and tidied in preparation for migrants (we'll get some eventually, surely) as we're getting ready to concentrate on the birds for the autumn. It's a slow start (this day last year saw the arrival of 2 Arctic Warblers, Yellow-browed Warbler, Ortolan, Marsh Warbler, Wryneck, Corncrake amongst others) and westerlies look set to dominate for a while yet, although there may be some hope of calmer weather tomorrow and maybe a hint of SE on Monday. We'll be out there regardless, so watch this space...

Highlights:
Barred Warbler: still at Stackhoull and Schoolton.
Common Rosefinch: one at Bull's Park and the Plantation.

Other sightings:
4 Greylag Goose, 4 Wigeon, 7 Teal, Red-throated Diver (past South Light), Sooty Shearwater (past South Light), 2 Cormorant, 7 Oystercatcher, 10 Golden Plover, 22 Ringed Plover, 58 Turnstone, 4 Sanderling, 19 Dunlin, 75 Redshank, 7 Arctic Tern, Kestrel, Peregrine (adult female), Guillemot, 10 Razorbill (all auks from South Light seawatching), 97 Skylark, 2 Swallow, 18 Willow Warbler, Reed Warbler (Gully), Garden Warbler, 2 Lesser Whitethroat, Whitethroat, Fieldfare (Quoy), 4 Whinchat, 64 Wheatear, Dunnock (Haa), 16 White Wagtail (along with 12 alba wagtails and 4 Pied Wagtail), 571 Meadow Pipit, 107 Rock Pipit, 164 Twite, 3 Linnet, 3 Lapland Bunting (singles on Vaasetter, Dronger and Eas Brecks).

Other wildlife:
Painted Lady, Red Admiral.

Year list: 191
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Thursday 5th September 2019
Weather: a windy NW start to the day, becoming more W later. Sunny at first, although some showers in the afternoon and then heavy rain overnight.
A somewhat surprising day given that there were a handful of arrivals from the east (not many, but more than we expecetd given the weather).

Highlights:
Wryneck: one at Ditfield was the first record of the autumn.
Common Rosefinch: one at Bull's Park.
Barred Warbler: still at Stackhoull.

Other sightings:
2 Greylag Goose, 3 Wigeon, 2 Teal, 3 Red-throated Diver (past South Light), 8 Oystercatcher, Golden Plover, 28 Ringed Plover, 48 Turnstone, 10 Sanderling, 13 Dunlin, 64 Redshank, Arctic Tern, Kestrel, 2 Guillemot, 3 Razorbill, Puffin (all auks from a South Light seawatch in the morning), 103 Skylark, 4 Swallow, 17 Willow Warbler, 2 Chiffchaff, Reed Warbler (Walli Burn), 2 Blackcap (Lower Stoneybrek), Garden Warbler, Lesser Whitethroat (Chalet), Whitethroat, Fieldfare (summering bird at Quoy), 2 Robin (a summering bird at Chalet and the first migrant of the autumn in Steensi Geo), Pied Flycatcher (Lower Leogh), 2 Whinchat, 82 Wheatear, Dunnock (Haa), 22 White Wagtail (along with 12 alba wagtails and 8 Pied Wagtail), 714 Meadow Pipit (highest count of the autumn), 103 Rock Pipit, Chaffinch (female still at Lower Leogh), 167 Twite, 3 Linnet, 7 Lapland Bunting (4 on Vaasetter and singles at Dronger, Eas Brecks and Pund).

Other wildlife:
5 Painted Lady.

Year list: 191
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Wednesday 4th September 2019
Weather: a moderate SW wind to start becoming a strong N later on, with gale force gusts forecast overnight. Sunny at first then cloudy over, with torrential rain arriving late afternoon for a while then generally damp conditions for the evening.

Highlights:
Two-barred Crossbill: sightings of a juvenile at Field, Bull's Park, Stoneybrek and Lower Leogh were all thought to relate to the same mobile individual, which was often hanging around with House Sparrows.
Barred Warbler: one still at Stackhoull.

Other sightings:
2 Greylag Goose, 8 Wigeon, 2 Teal, Cormorant, 5 Oystercatcher, 2 Golden Plover, 31 Ringed Plover, 103 Turnstone, 2 Knot, 9 Sanderling, 11 Dunlin, 44 Redshank, 0 Arctic Tern (first blank day), Swift, Kestrel, 94 Skylark, 6 Swallow, 13 Willow Warbler, 2 Chiffchaff, Sedge Warbler (Walli Burn), Blackcap (Chalet), Garden Warbler, Lesser Whitethroat (Chalet), Goldcrest (Gully), 6 Whinchat, 130 Wheatear, Dunnock (Haa), 52 White Wagtail (along with 14 alba wagtails and 2 Pied Wagtail), 660 Meadow Pipit, 151 Rock Pipit, Chaffinch (female still), 120 Twite, 3 Linnet, Lapland Bunting (Vaasetter).

Other wildlife:
18 Painted Lady, Peacock.

Year list: 191
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Tuesday 3rd September 2019
Weather: a lovely calm, sunny morning, with cloud coming in during the afternoon as the SE wind increased bringing rain just before dark.

Highlights:
Two-barred Crossbill: a juvenile at Lower Leogh was obviously a new arrival and continues the record year for this species on the Isle.
Barred Warbler: a tired individual at Stackhoull.
Common Rosefinch: one flew from Chalet to Bull's Park.

Two-barred Crossbill, Lower Leogh (Richard Cope)

Other sightings:
Greylag Goose, 9 Wigeon, 2 Teal, Red-breasted Merganser, Grey Heron, 5 Cormorant, 2 Sparrowhawk, 7 Oystercatcher, 10 Golden Plover, 25 Ringed Plover, 41 Turnstone, Knot, 9 Sanderling, 13 Dunlin, 28 Redshank, 32 Common Gull, Arctic Tern, Kestrel, Peregrine, 62 Skylark, Sand Martin, 9 Swallow, 10 Willow Warbler, 5 Chiffchaff, Reed Warbler (Gully), 2 Blackcap (Plantation and Barkland; first of the autumn), Garden Warbler, Lesser Whitethroat (Barkland), Whitethroat (Stackhoull), 3 Goldcrest, Robin (Gully), 10 Whinchat, 105 Wheatear, 78 White Wagtail (along with 16 alba wagtails and 4 Pied Wagtail), 616 Meadow Pipit, Chaffinch (female Lower Leogh; first of the autumn), 90 Twite, 5 Linnet, 2 Lapland Bunting (one on Dronger, with another over Hill Dyke that was probably responsible for the sighting at Bull's Park later).

Other wildlife:
Common Eel (one fighting a Cormorant in Muckle Uri Geo), Harbour Porpoise (Good Shepherd), 36 Painted Lady, 5 Peacock.

Year list: 191
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Monday 2nd September 2019
Weather: A blustery SW or S wind, easing throughout the day, largely cloudy but dry.

Sightings:
34 Pink-footed Goose (moving south in two groups; the earliest autumn arrival date since 2005), 5 Wigeon, 6 Teal, Red-breasted Merganser, Grey Heron, 4 Cormorant, 10 Oystercatcher, 21 Golden Plover, 38 Ringed Plover, 95 Turnstone, 4 Knot, 8 Sanderling, 12 Dunlin, Purple Sandpiper, 30 Redshank, 44 Common Gull, 2 Arctic Tern, Swift, Kestrel, 2 Puffin (from Good Shepherd), 72 Skylark, Sand Martin, 5 Swallow, 14 Willow Warbler, Chiffchaff, Reed Warbler, Goldcrest (Kirn o' Skroo), Fieldfare (the lingering bird at Quoy), Pied Flycatcher (Gully), 4 Whinchat, 141 Wheatear, Dunnock (Haa), 32 White Wagtail (along with 46 alba wagtails and 2 Pied Wagtails), 620 Meadow Pipit (highest count of the autumn so far), 163 Twite, Linnet, 2 Crossbill.

Other wildlife:
3 Painted Lady.

Year list: 191
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Sunday 1st September 2019
Weather: a fairly windy day, with a W or NW wind that made things feel quite cool. A few showers, especially in the morning, but mostly dry.

Highlights:
Common Buzzard: one first seen over the Puffinn went up the west coast then returned south shortly afterwards.
Marsh Warbler: still present at Quoy.

Common Buzzard (Richard Cope)

Other sightings:
9 Wigeon, 7 Teal, Red-breasted Merganser, 2 Grey Heron, Cormorant, 9 Oystercatcher, 20 Golden Plover, 21 Ringed Plover, Whimbrel, 9 Curlew, 2 Black-tailed Godwit, 133 Turnstone, 6 Knot, 10 Sanderling, 14 Dunlin, 38 Snipe, 2 Green Sandpiper, 53 Redshank, 3 Black-headed Gull, 40 Common Gull, 3 Lesser Black-backed Gull, 2 Arctic Tern, Peregrine, 2 Guillemot, 18 Razorbill, 2 Puffin (all the auk records coming from a South Light seawatch), 3 Carrion Crow, 65 Skylark, Sand Martin, 8 Swallow, Wood Warbler (Burkle), 17 Willow Warbler, 3 Chiffchaff, 3 Reed Warbler, 2 Garden Warbler, Lesser Whithethroat (School), 2 Whitethroat, Goldcrest (Plantation), Ring Ouzel (Wirvie Burn; the earliest autumn arrival since pre-1991), Robin (Gully), Pied Flycatcher, 9 Whinchat, 190 Wheatear, 22 White Wagtail (plus 32 alba wagtails and 1 Pied Wagtail), 484 Meadow Pipit, 121 Rock Pipit, 156 Twite, 2 Linnet.
The following species were also present:
Mallard, Eider, Fulmar, Gannet, Shag, Purple Sandpiper, Kittiwake, Great Black-backed Gull, Herring Gull, Great Skua, Arctic Skua, Black Guillemot, Rock Dove, Hooded Crow, Raven, 'Fair Isle Wren', Starling, House Sparrow.


Ring Ouzel, Wirvie Burn (Richard Cope)

Other wildlife:
7 Painted Lady.

Year list: 191
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Saturday 31st August 2019
Weather: a wet day, with a light southerly wind to start with increasing to a stronger W or NW wind later. No full census due to the conditions, with little sign of new birds.

Sightings:
4 Wigeon, Common Scoter (North Haven), 162 Storm Petrel (trapped overnight in the Haven), Grey Heron, 21 Golden Plover, Whimbrel, Bar-tailed Godwit, Black-tailed Godwit, 7 Knot, 3 Sanderling, 3 Dunlin, Kestrel, Merlin, Sand Martin, Reed Warbler (Gully), Goldcrest (Plantation), Pied Flycatcher, 9 Whinchat.

Year list: 191
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Friday 30th August 2019
Weather: quite a strong SW wind, with a morning of some heavy rain, although a calmer and drier late afternoon and evening (dropping off enough to encourage thoughts of Storm Petrel ringing...).

Highlights:
Marsh Warbler: one in the Schoolton/Quoy area.
Barred Warbler: one at Burkle.
Common Rosefinch: one at the Obs.

Other sightings:
11 Teal, 'blue' Fulmar (past Meoness), 2 Sooty Shearwater (past South Light), Grey Heron, 2 Cormorant, 15 Oystercatcher, 8 Golden Plover, 3 Black-tailed Godwit, 129 Turnstone, 5 Knot, 3 Ruff, 13 Sanderling, 4 Dunlin, 18 Purple Sandpiper, Green Sandpiper (Gully), 24 Redshank, 92 Common Gull, 3 Arctic Tern, 3 Swift, Kestrel, Merlin, 5 Razorbill (past South Light), Sand Martin, 5 Swallow, Wood Warbler (Chapel Plantation), 11 Willow Warbler, 5 Chiffchaff, 3 Reed Warbler, Grasshopper Warbler (Walli Burn), 5 Garden Warbler, Whitethroat, Goldcrest (Plantation), Pied Flycatcher, 9 Whinchat.

Other wildlife:
Harbour Porpoise (off South Light).

Year list: 191
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Thursday 29th August 2019
Weather: a moderate SSE or SE wind, feeling stronger in exposed areas. Largely sunny, although rain from mid-afternoon for a short while and cloudy into the evening.

Highlights:
Common Rosefinch: one trapped and ringed in the Plantation.
Lapland Bunting: one in Schoolton garden (first of the autumn).

Lapland Bunting, Schoolton (Richard Cope)

Other sightings:
Wigeon, 6 Teal, Red-breasted Merganser, Red-throated Diver (Good Shepherd), 54 Storm Petrel (heard and seen in the early hours of the morning between Easter Lother and Wester Lother; part of a current project looking at the status of Storm Petrel on Fair Isle), 2 Grey Heron, 4 Cormorant, 13 Oystercatcher, Lapwing, 10 Golden Plover, 17 Curlew, Bar-tailed Godwit, 2 Black-tailed Godwit, 76 Turnstone, 2 Knot, 9 Sanderling, 12 Dunlin, 30 Snipe, 19 Redshank, 112 Common Gull, 5 Arctic Tern, Kestrel, Merlin, 2 Peregrine, Guillemot (from the Good Shepherd; first record since 11th August), 11 Razorbill (from the Good Shepherd; first record since 2nd August; but no Puffins for the second consecutive day), 71 Skylark, Sand Martin, 19 Swallow, House Martin, Wood Warbler (Midway), 14 Willow Warbler, 3 Chiffchaff, 2 Reed Warbler (both in Gully), Grasshopper Warbler (Walli Burn), 2 Garden Warbler, 2 Whitethroat, Goldcrest (Plantation), Fieldfare, Spotted Flycatcher, Robin, 4 Pied Flycatcher, 5 Whinchat, 320 Wheatear, Dunnock (Lower Leogh; first of the autumn), 33 White Wagtail (plus 29 alba wagtails and 3 Pied Wagtails), 487 Meadow Pipit, 85 Rock Pipit, 183 Twite, 2 Linnet.

Other wildlife:
98 Painted Lady, Convolvulus Hawk-moth (one in Wirvie Burn), White-tailed Bunblebee (Schoolton).

Year list: 191
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Wednesday 28th August 2019
Weather: a moderate southerly breeze, stiff at times, with early murky fog and drizzle giving way to a largely sunny day with some cloudy spells.
Another good day of birds, although not quite the buzz of new arrivals that infected yesterday evening. Still, a few pleasant bits and pieces in and a few higher counts. All in all, not a bad day!

Highlights:
Icterine Warbler: one in the Gully late afternoon.

Other sightings:
5 Wigeon, 24 Teal, Red-breasted Merganser, 3 Grey Heron, 27 Oystercatcher, 2 Golden Plover, 9 Curlew, Bar-tailed Godwit, 2 Black-tailed Godwit, 57 Turnstone, 4 Knot, 3 Ruff, Sanderling, 7 Dunlin, 20 Purple Sandpiper, 42 Snipe, Green Sandpiper, 35 Redshank, 212 Common Gull, 6 Arctic Tern, Swift, Kestrel, 2 Merlin, Peregrine, 66 Skylark, Sand Martin, 5 Swallow, 3 House Martin (first of the month), 2 Wood Warbler (Burkle and Midway), 20 Willow Warbler, 3 Chiffchaff, 2 Reed Warbler, Grasshopper Warbler (Wirvie Burn; first of the autumn), 9 Garden Warbler, Lesser Whitethroat, Whitethroat, 2 Spotted Flycatcher, 11 Pied Flycatcher, 12 Whinchat, 185 Wheatear, 41 White Wagtail (plus 20 alba wagtails and 5 Pied Wagtails), 536 Meadow Pipit, 106 Rock Pipit, 147 Twite, 4 Linnet.

Other wildlife:
Red Admiral, 186 Painted Lady, 3 Peacock, Silver Y.

Year list: 191
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Tuesday 27th August 2019
Weather: a light SE wind, with a largely dry and bright day.
A decent arrival saw an increase in migrants, including another new species for the year. There was a definite feeling of a late arrival, although birds were also heading south through the day. Grace made it back to the Isle (on the Good Shepherd, the same way she went out), sporting a natty new purple cast, the result of a fall whilst out walking on Friday that caused a fractured arm. She's doing fine though and pleased to be home.

Highlights:
Greenish Warbler: one at Midway in the late afternoon; the 56th record for Fair Isle. This species is occurring with increasing frequency, since 2013 it has been recorded in every year except 2017.
Citrine Wagtail: having spent all day in the South Harbour/South Light area, it was a bit of a surprise when it turned up in the Obs mistnet at roost; just the 8th to be ringed on Fair Isle.

Greenish Warbler, Midway (Max Hellicar)

Other sightings:
2 Greylag Goose, 2 Wigeon, 5 Teal, Red-breasted Merganser, Sooty Shearwater (from Good Shepherd), 4 Grey Heron, 3 Cormorant, Sparrowhawk (first of the autumn), 39 Oystercatcher, Lapwing, 13 Golden Plover, 21 Curlew, Bar-tailed Godwit, 2 Black-tailed Godwit, 46 Turnstone, 9 Knot, 2 Ruff, 7 Sanderling, 7 Dunlin, 2 Green Sandpiper, 31 Redshank, 66 Common Gull, 4 Arctic Tern, 3 Swift, 2 Merlin, Peregrine, 2 Woodpigeon, 52 Skylark, 200 Swallow (a good day of southerly passage), 2 Wood Warbler (Midway and Burkle), 22 Willow Warbler (a minimum count, with an apparent arrival in the late afternoon), 4 Chiffchaff, Reed Warbler (Chalet), 3 Garden Warbler, Lesser Whitethroat, Fieldfare, 2 Robin, 10 Pied Flycatcher, 5 Whinchat, 130 Wheatear, Grey Wagtail (first of the autumn), 18 White Wagtail (plus 30 alba wagtails and 2 Pied Wagtails), 537 Meadow Pipit, 97 Rock Pipit, 157 Twite, 3 Linnet.

Other wildlife:
Red Admiral, 180 Painted Lady, 8 Peacock, 4 Silver Y.

Year list: 191
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Monday 26th August 2019
Weather: calm, with just a light SE breeze at times. Foggy patches, thick at times, with some drizzle in the morning. The evening was largely clear, although fog had started to roll in again by the very end of the night.
Unfortunately, the conditions meant full census wasn't possible (although coverage was near complete during the course of the day). With new birds in, we hope the fog lifts to enable more of the arrivals to be found.

Highlights:
Citrine Wagtail: having been heard over Meoness yesterday, then the Haven this morning, one was heard again in Gilly Burn this afternoon before finally being pinned down at Hesti Geo (having completed an entire lap of the Isle!). The 77th record for the Isle and first since 2017 (2018 being a rare blank year for the species).

Citrine Wagtail, Hesti Geo (Allan Perkins)

Other sightings:
2 Wigeon, 4 Teal, 49 Storm Petrel (trapped in the Haven overnight), 2 Grey Heron, 40 Oystercatcher, 9 Golden Plover, 9 Whimbrel, 16 Curlew, Black-tailed Godwit, 47 Turnstone, 7 Knot, 2 Ruff, 5 Sanderling, 7 Dunlin, Green Sandpiper, 22 Redshank, 11 Arctic Tern, Collared Dove (first of the month), 4 Swift, Kestrel, Merlin, 2 Peregrine, 2 Wood Warbler (Burkle and Wester Lother), 13 Willow Warbler (highest count of the month so far), 5 Chiffchaff, Reed Warbler (Chalet), 2 Garden Warbler, 2 Lesser Whitethroat, Spotted Flycatcher (first of the month), 5 Whinchat (highest count of the month so far), 3 Linnet.

Other wildlife:
21 Risso's Dolphin off Dronger (including at least 4 calves).
62 Painted Lady, Peacock, Silver Y.

Year list: 190
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Sunday 25th August 2019
Weather: sunny at first, and calm, with a light SE breeze. Low cloud droped in, with some fog by later in the day, although it cleared by late evening.

Highlights:
Honey-buzzard: one circling over the Hill Dyke was later seen wandering the Isle.
Corncrake: one flushed from Wirvie Burn; first of the year.
Red-backed Shrike: one near Setter was presumably a new arrival.
Barred Warbler: 2; one at Troila and one roaming the south-east still.

Honey-buzzard, over Hill Dyke (Max Hellicar)



Barred Warbler, Troila (Max Hellicar)

Other sightings:
2 Wigeon, 5 Teal, 4 Grey Heron, Cormorant, 28 Oystercatcher, 5 Lapwing, 17 Golden Plover, Whimbrel, 21 Curlew, Bar-tailed Godwit, 3 Black-tailed Godwit, 2 Knot, 8 Ruff, 4 Sanderling, 10 Dunlin, 40 Snipe, Green Sandpiper, 16 Redshank, 35 Common Gull, 8 Arctic Tern, 3 Swift, Merlin, 62 Skylark, 12 Swallow, 2 Wood Warbler (Quoy and Kroga Geo), 10 Willow Warbler, 4 Chiffchaff, 2 Reed Warbler (Quoy and Chalet), 3 Garden Warbler, Lesser Whitethroat, Goldcrest (Obs), Fieldfare (lingering bird), 2 Robin (Gully and Chalet), 2 Pied Flycatcher, 4 Whinchat, 170 Wheatear, 34 White Wagtail (also 5 Pied and 31 alba wagtails), 298 Meadow Pipit, 101 Rock Pipit, 151 Twite, Linnet, Crossbill (juvenile, Busta Geo).

Other wildlife:
6 Risso's Dolphin off South Light (minimum).
9 Painted Lady, 11 Peacock (record count for the Isle), 2 Silver Y.

Year list: 190
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Saturday 24th August 2019
Weather: a light to moderate SW breeze.

Highlights:
Barred Warbler: one still at Haa.

Other sightings:
2 Wigeon, 4 Teal, Red-breasted Merganser, Red-throated Diver, Grey Heron, 24 Oystercatcher, 5 Lapwing, 6 Golden Plover, 16 Curlew, 2 Black-tailed Godwit, 44 Turnstone, 5 Knot, 5 Ruff (including the Norwegian-ringed colour-flagged bird), 8 Sanderling, 11 Dunlin, Purple Sandpiper, Green Sandpiper, 21 Redshank, 42 Common Gull, 7 Arctic Tern, Merlin, 78 Skylark, 24 Swallow, 6 Willow Warbler, 3 Chiffchaff, Reed Warbler (Chalet), Garden Warbler, Robin (Gully), Black Redstart (Wirvie; first of the month), 142 Wheatear, 30 White Wagtail (also 2 Pied and 20 alba wagtails), 351 Meadow Pipit, 143 Rock Pipit, 168 Twite.

Other wildlife:
Bat sp?: a small bat was found oustide a workshop at Kenaby before flying off strongly across the Isle.
Painted Lady.

Bat sp? (presumably Nathusius's Pipistrelle), Kenaby (David Parnaby)

Year list: 189
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Friday 23rd August 2019
Weather: SW and rather blustery at first, with rain from mid-morning. The wind switched to a more SE direction later and dropped away as it also dried up, although by that point the Wardening team were rather soggy after census.
A fine netting session at the Obs in the evening saw almost 50 birds ringed, mostly alba wagtails and Twite and a few new migrants in the evening suggested there could be more to look forward to soon.

Highlights:
Barred Warbler: 3; an evening arrival saw birds at Haa, Burkle and the Obs.
Red-backed Shrike: still around the Haa.

Other sightings:
Greylag Goose, 2 Wigeon, 4 Teal, Sooty Shearwater (past South Light; first of the year - the latest 'first date' since 2010), 32 Oystercatcher, 4 Lapwing, 4 Golden Plover, 11 Curlew, 2 Black-tailed Godwit, 145 Turnstone, 3 Knot, 4 Ruff (including a colour-flagged bird), 3 Sanderling, 8 Dunlin, 20 Purple Sandpiper, 46 Redshank, 76 Common Gull, 17 Arctic Tern, Merlin, 54 Skylark, 11 Swallow, 6 Willow Warbler, 2 Reed Warbler (Quoy and Chalet), 2 Garden Warbler, Goldcrest (Obs; first of the autumn), Fieldfare, 90 Wheatear, 14 White Wagtail (also 8 Pied and 21 alba wagtails), 365 Meadow Pipit, 141 Rock Pipit, 127 Twite, 2 Linnet.

Year list: 189
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Thursday 22nd August 2019
Weather: a blustery SW wind, with rain overnight into the early hours then again in the afternoon.

Highlights:
Red-backed Shrike: still present near Haa.

Other sightings:
2 Wigeon, 9 Teal, Red-breasted Merganser (male), 53 Oystercatcher, Lapwing (North Light), 4 Golden Plover, Whimbrel, 18 Curlew, 3 Black-tailed Godwit, 84 Turnstone, 7 Knot, 3 Ruff, 4 Sanderling, 9 Dunlin, Green Sandpiper, 71 Common Gull, 11 Arctic Tern, Peregrine (juvenile), 62 Skylark, 6 Swallow, Wood Warbler (Schoolton), 4 Willow Warbler, 2 Reed Warbler (Quoy and Plantation), Fieldfare, 147 Wheatear, 14 White Wagtail (also 3 Pied and 23 alba wagtails), 384 Meadow Pipit, 73 Rock Pipit, 138 Twite.

Other wildlife:
Red Admiral, 2 Painted Lady.

Year list: 188
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Wednesday 21st August 2019
Weather: SE3-4 becoming more southerly and increasing 5-6. Sunny at first, but clouding over and raining by the evening.

Highlights:
Barred Warbler: still present around Leogh.
Red-backed Shrike: female still around the Haa and Skerryholm area.

Other sightings:
2 Teal, 42 Oystercatcher, 22 Curlew, Bar-tailed Godwit, 2 Black-tailed Godwit (Upper Stoneybrek), 4 Knot, 4 Ruff, 2 Sanderling, 12 Dunlin, 48 Common Gull, 14 Arctic Tern, 70 Skylark, 8 Swallow (including four recently fledged juveniles at Bull's Park; the first successful breeding since 2017), Wood Warbler (Midway), 6 Willow Warbler, Chiffchaff, 142 Wheatear, 23 White Wagtail (also 3 Pied and 24 alba wagtails), 344 Meadow Pipit, 145 Rock Pipit, 134 Twite, 3 Linnet.

Other wildlife:
2 Red Admiral, 10 Painted Lady, 5 Peacock, White-tailed Bumblebee (Setter).

Year list: 188
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Tuesday 20th August 2019
Weather: Another day of blustery SW wind, although mostly sunny.

Highlights:
Blyth's Reed Warbler: reappeared at Schoolhouse, where it showed well at times.
Barred Warbler: Utra.
Red-backed Shrike: female again around Haa.

Blyth's Reed Warbler, Schoolhouse (David Parnaby)

Other sightings:
2 Wigeon, 7 Teal, Fulmar (first fledged youngster seen, having crashed near Nether Taft!), 81 Oystercatcher, 2 Lapwing, 5 Golden Plover, 18 Curlew, Bar-tailed Godwit, 3 Knot, 3 Ruff, 3 Sanderling, 13 Dunlin, 3 Green Sandpiper, 86 Common Gull, 11 Arctic Tern, Merlin, 69 Skylark, 2 Swallow, 5 Willow Warbler, 2 Chiffchaff (both lingering birds), Garden Warbler, Lesser Whitethroat, Robin (Gully), 175 Wheatear, 23 White Wagtail (also 6 Pied and 25 alba wagtails), 306 Meadow Pipit, 110 Rock Pipit, 101 Twite, 4 Linnet.

Other wildlife:
3 Painted Lady, White-tailed Bumblebee (Chalet).

Year list: 188
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Monday 19th August 2019
Weather: heavy rain at first, but clearing to a cloudy day with some sunny spells and a few more showers. Moderate SW wind.
Although the Good Shepherd sailed and there was just one flight, it wasn't a Tuesday. Generally rather quiet for birds on the move, with not much promise in the forecast for change anytime soon.

Highlights:
Red-backed Shrike: female still around Haa.

Other sightings:
7 Teal, 43 Oystercatcher, 2 Lapwing, 2 Golden Plover, Whimbrel, 21 Curlew, Bar-tailed Godwit, 12 Knot, 3 Ruff, 2 Sanderling, 14 Dunlin, 3 Green Sandpiper, 72 Redshank, 98 Common Gull, 5 Arctic Tern (almost all gone now), Merlin, Peregrine, 48 Skylark, 4 Swallow, Wood Warbler (still at Houll), 6 Willow Warbler, 2 Chiffchaff (both lingering birds), Sedge Warbler, Lesser Whitethroat (Plantation), Fieldfare (Quoy), 193 Wheatear, 27 White Wagtail (also 3 Pied and 32 alba wagtails), 221 Meadow Pipit, 119 Rock Pipit, 94 Twite.

Other wildlife:
2 Painted Lady.

Year list: 188
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Sunday 18th August 2019
Weather: a fresh southerly wind with a hint of SE in it, largely dry and sunny, although some showers.
Despite no classic conditions for migration, the autumn continues to tick along nicely with marginal weather bringing us some decent birds. Hopefully we're just saving all the proper easterlies for September/October!

Highlights:
Blyth's Reed Warbler: one at Shirva, where it showed well at times. If accepted, the 53rd record for Fair Isle, but just the fourth in August.
Red-backed Shrike: female still around Skerryholm.
Barred Warbler: still present around the Leogh area.
Mandarin: female again on Da Water.

Blyth's Reed Warbler, Shirva (David Parnaby)

Other sightings:
7 Teal, 67 Oystercatcher, 2 Lapwing, Golden Plover, Whimbrel, Bar-tailed Godwit, 138 Turnstone, 5 Knot, 4 Ruff, 7 Sandlering, 13 Dunlin, 44 Purple Sandpiper, 30 Redshank, 113 Common Gull, 83 Skylark, 2 Swallow, Wood Warbler (Houll), 6 Willow Warbler, Chiffchaff (a lingering bird), 2 Sedge Warbler, 2 Reed Warbler (Schoolton and Meadow Burn), Garden Warbler, Lesser Whitethroat (trapped in Hjon Dyke), Whitethroat, Fieldfare (the summering bird at Quoy), 194 Wheatear, 27 White Wagtail (also 4 Pied and 22 alba wagtails), 202 Meadow Pipit, 165 Rock Pipit, 135 Twite, 2 Linnet.


Wood Warbler, Houll (Max Hellicar)

Other wildlife:
6 Painted Lady, 2 Peacock.

Year list: 188
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Saturday 17th August 2019
Weather: calm at first, with a sunny SE1-2 becoming SW 4-5 later, bringing cloud and rain.
Back on track with a pleasant start, with full census seeing a few new birds and then some slightly worse weather that was at least good for getting some habitat work done.

Highlights:
Red-backed Shrike: one at Skerryholm then Haa; first of the autumn.
Barred Warbler: one in the area from Lower Leogh to Midway, presumably the bird from 15th.

Red-backed Shrike, Haa (Max Hellicar)

Other sightings:
3 Teal, 109 Eider (including 34 juveniles), Red-breasted Merganser, 107 Oystercatcher, Lapwing, Bar-tailed Godwit, 157 Turnstone, 21 Knot, 6 Ruff, 4 Sandlering, 8 Dunlin, 66 Purple Sandpiper, 6 Green Sandpiper, 56 Redshank, 105 Common Gull, 2 Swift, Merlin, 36 Skylark, 6 Swallow, 9 Willow Warbler, Chiffchaff (both lingering birds), Sedge Warbler (Charlie's Trees), 3Reed Warbler (Burkle, Meadow Burn and Schoolton), Lesser Whitethroat (Schoolton), Whitethroat (Skadan; first of the autumn), Robin (Schoolhouse; a summering bird), 140 Wheatear, 24 White Wagtail (also 6 Pied and 23 alba wagtails), 241 Meadow Pipit, 159 Rock Pipit, 123 Twite, 3 Linnet.


Knot, South Light (Max Hellicar)

Other wildlife:
12 Painted Lady, 2 Peacock.

Year list: 188
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Friday 16th August 2019
Weather:.
S5-6, cloudy with rain throughout.
No full census due to miserable birding conditions.

Sightings:
Wigeon, 2 Teal, Bar-tailed Godwit, 81 Knot (the highest count since 1969), 6 Ruff, Sanderling, Dunlin, 2 Linnet.

Year list: 188
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Thursday 15th August 2019
Weather: a misty start after overnight rain, but clearing to a brighter day with a moderate SW wind.

Highlights:
Icterine Warbler: 2; singles at Buness and South Harbour.
Barred Warbler: one in Schoolton (third of the autumn).
Mandarin: still present on Da Water.

Other sightings:
Wigeon, Teal, Grey Heron, 6 Lapwing, 4 Golden Plover, Bar-tailed Godwit, 19 Knot, 5 Ruff, Sanderling, 17 Dunlin, 7 Green Sandpiper, 74 Common Gull, Merlin, Peregrine, 51 Skylark, 2 Swallow, 5 Willow Warbler, 2 Chiffchaff (both summering birds), Lesser Whitethroat (Schoolton; first of the autumn), Whinchat (Bull's Park; first of the autumn), 134 Wheatear, 15 White Wagtail (also 10 Pied and 20 alba wagtails), 214 Meadow Pipit, 93 Rock Pipit, 3 Linnet.

Other wildlife:
6+ Risso's Dolphin (east past South Light and frequently breaching)
11 Painted Lady.

Year list: 188
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Wednesday 14th August 2019
Weather: SW3-4, sunny.
A full day of baling for the Isle as the weather held for another day, with the Wardening team joining in and also completing census. Not too much in the way of new birds, but the wind had started swinging towards the SE by the evening, so maybe tomorrow...

Highlights:
Common Rosefinch: one at Chalet.
Mandarin: still present on Da Water.

Other sightings:
Wigeon, Grey Heron, 6 Lapwing, 3 Golden Plover, Bar-tailed Godwit, 6 Knot, 2 Ruff, 9 Dunlin, 3 Green Sandpiper, Merlin (first of the autumn), Peregrine, 77 Skylark, 6 Swallow, Willow Warbler, 3 Chiffchaff (all presumed summering birds), Reed Warbler (still in Meadow Burn), Fieldfare (the lingering bird from July), 224 Wheatear, 11 White Wagtail (also 2 Pied and 8 alba wagtails), 224 Meadow Pipit, 100 Rock Pipit, 120 Twite, 2 Linnet.

Other wildlife:
10 Risso's Dolphin (east past South Light)
54 Painted Lady, 8 Peacock, 3 Silver Y.

Peacock, North Light (David Parnaby)

Year list: 188
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Tuesday 13th August 2019
Weather: SW2-3, sunny and rather pleasant, although cooler in the breeze at times.
A fine sunny day, with the plane and Good Shepherd both running to schedule, and a busy afternoon of baling.

Highlights:
Mandarin: a female or juvenile on Da Water is just the 4th record for the Isle and the first August record.

Mandarin, Da Water (Max Hellicar)

Other sightings:
Wigeon, Red-breasted Merganser, 5 Lapwing, Whimbrel, Bar-tailed Godwit, 4 Knot, 2 Ruff, 10 Dunlin, 5 Green Sandpiper, 2 Peregrine, 65 Skylark, 12 Swallow, 3 Willow Warbler, Chiffchaff (summering bird), Reed Warbler (Meadow Burn), 237 Wheatear, 19 White Wagtail (also 1 Pied and 25 alba wagtails), 204 Meadow Pipit, 93 Rock Pipit, 124 Twite.

Other wildlife:
93 Painted Lady, 7 Peacock, 2 Silver Y.

Year list: 188
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Monday 12th August 2019
Weather: Light SW wind, largely cloudy with some sunny spells.
A busy day of travel, with catch-up flights following Saturday's cancellations seeing six planes coming and going. The Good Shepherd also sailed, catching up on the weekend's postponed sailing.

Highlights:
TWO-BARRED CROSSBILL: at least two in the south-east of the Isle, one of which at least was a juvenile.

Other sightings:
Wigeon, 2 Red-breasted Merganser, Storm Petrel (from Good Shepherd), 5 Golden Plover, Knot, 4 Dunlin, 2 Green Sandpiper, Peregrine, 2 Sand Martin, 2 Pied Flycatcher, 2 Linnet.

Other wildlife:
20 Risso's Dolphin (several sightings including two north of the Isle from the Good Shepherd IV, a small group off South Light then at least 20 off North Light in the evening)
7 Harbour Porpoise (5 off Rippack and 2 off North Light)

Year list: 187
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11th August 2019
Weather: NW 6-7, largely cloudy until later on but visibility good.
A very windy day, with little in the way of movement noted, although another raft of seabird monitoring work saw a few more final counts done as the autumn advances.

Sightings:
Wigeon, Teal, Red-breasted Merganser, Knot, 2 Ruff, 10 Dunlin, 9 Purple Sandpiper, 2 Green Sandpiper, 2 Comon Guillemot (off South Light; first sighting since 4th), Cuckoo (South Light), Sand Martin (Chalet), Willow Warbler.

Other wildlife:
Painted Lady (still present).

Year list: 187
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10th August 2019
Weather: mild and variable winds, predominantly from a northeasterly direction, with dominant cloud cover deteriorating into fog; dry with moderate to poor visibility.

Highlights:
TWO-BARRED CROSSBILL: 4; two males and two juveniles were present between South Green and Dog Geo.
Common Rosefinch: one, a brown individual, was atop Hoini.

Other sightings:
Wigeon, Teal, Red-breasted Merganser, 4 Golden Plover, 109 Turnstone, 2 Knot, 3 Ruff, Sanderling, Purple Sandpiper, 5 Common Sandpiper, Green Sandpiper, 20 Redshank, Arctic Tern (22 on Buness, with numbers steadily decreasing), Cuckoo, 28 Skylark, Sand Martin, Wood Warbler (South Raeva; first of the autumn), 5 Willow Warbler, Chiffchaff, 4 Garden Warbler, Pied Flycatcher (Obs; first of the autumn), 175 Wheatear, 139 Meadow Pipit, 128 Rock Pipit, 135 Twite, 3 Linnet.

Other wildlife:
68 Painted Lady.

Year list: 187
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9th August 2019                                                                                                                                                
Weather: moderate to strong northerly winds with dominant cloud cover and good visibility; a dry morning descending into increasingly heavy rain throughout the afternoon.

Highlights:
TWO-BARRED CROSSBILL: a juvenile atop Malcolm’s Head.
Leach’s Petrel: one heard over Busta Brecks during the early hours.

Other sightings:
Wigeon, Teal, Tufted Duck (Da Water), 3 Storm-petrel, 16 Golden Plover, 2 Knot, 14 Dunlin, 3 Purple Sandpiper, 3 Green Sandpiper, 7 Black-headed Gull, Cuckoo, Willow Warbler, Fieldfare (the lingering bird from mid-July was again present in the Plantation), 2 Linnet.

Other wildlife:
Painted Lady (still present).

Year list: 187
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8th August 2019
Weather: moderate northerly winds and little cloud cover with prolonged sunny spells; a dry day with excellent visibility.

Highlights:
TWO-BARRED CROSSBILL: 5; three males and two juveniles were seen around Malcolm’s Head, with presumably one of these males seen earlier at Gorsen’s Geo.

Other sightings:
Wigeon, Teal, Red-breasted Merganser, 2 Grey Heron, 2 Golden Plover, 19 Turnstone, 3 Knot, 9 Ruff, 17 Dunlin, Common Sandpiper, Green Sandpiper, Cuckoo, Kestrel, 42 Skylark, 2 Willow Warbler, Reed Warbler (Meadow Burn), Garden Warbler (Setter), 212 Wheatear, 147 Meadow Pipit, 126 Rock Pipit, 95 Twite, Linnet.

Other wildlife:
130 Painted Lady, Small Tortoiseshell.

Year list: 187
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7th August 2019
Weather: continued calm to moderate northeasterly winds with patchy cloud cover; a dry morning with drizzle in the afternoon which resulted in a decrease in visibility from very good to moderate.

Highlights:
TWO-BARRED CROSSBILL: 4; two males and two juveniles performed well on South Green.
Barred Warbler: one remained at Schoolton.

Other sightings:
Red-breasted Merganser, 3 Storm-petrel, Golden Plover, 18 Turnstone, 5 Knot, 16 Dunlin, 2 Common Sandpiper, 4 Green Sandpiper, 2 Cuckoo, Kestrel, 36 Skylark, 2 Chiffchaff, 3 Reed Warbler (Meadow Burn [2] and Quoy), Robin (Gully), 188 Wheatear, 159 Meadow Pipit, 118 Rock Pipit, 135 Twite, Linnet.

Other wildlife:
153 Painted Lady, 2 Peacock, Silver Y.

Year list: 187
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6th August 2019
Weather: calm to moderate northeasterly winds with dominant cloud cover descending into fog and frequent rain becoming heavier around lunchtime; poor to moderate visibility.

Highlights:
TWO-BARRED CROSSBILL: one; a male which spent a short while settled in the Observatory garden before being later seen over Koolin.
Common Rosefinch: a cracking singing male roamed the south of the island.

Other sightings:
Wigeon, 2 Teal, Red-breasted Merganser, 11 Golden Plover, Whimbrel, 52 Turnstone, 6 Knot, Ruff, 14 Dunlin, 33 Purple Sandpiper, Common Sandpiper, 3 Green Sandpiper, 172 Common Gull, Peregrine, 2 Chiffchaff, Reed Warbler (Meadow Burn), 3 Linnet.

Other wildlife:
23 Painted Lady.

Year list: 187
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5th August 2019
Weather: moderate easterly winds throughout the day; mostly cloudy with heavy rain for a few hours around lunchtime. Otherwise dry with good visibility, turning into a pleasantly sunny evening.

Highlights:
TWO-BARRED CROSSBILL: male at Gorsen’s Geo.
Barred Warbler: 2; still at Schoolton and the Obs.

Other sightings: Teal, Golden Plover, 7 Knot, Ruff, Dunlin, Common Sandpiper, 2 Green Sandpiper, 24 Redshank, 87 Common Gull, Peregrine, 2 Reed Warbler (Meadow Burn), Robin (Gully), Linnet.

Other wildlife: Painted Lady (still present).

Year list: 187
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4th August 2019
Weather:  light northeasterly wind with cloud throughout the day. Dry with very good visibility.

Highlights:
TWO-BARRED CROSSBILL: 3; a male south over the Walli Burn in the morning was presumably the same individual later seen over the Plantation, with two very approachable juveniles associating closely with a Crossbill on South Green throughout the afternoon.
Barred Warbler: 2; lingering individuals remaining at Schoolton and the Obs.


Two-barred Crossbills and Crossbill (right hand bird), South Green (Max Hellicar)

Other sightings: Wigeon (Da Water), Teal, 2 Red-breasted Merganser, 142 Storm-petrel (trapped overnight, with the first Danish-ringed bird of the season caught), Gannet (first fledged youngsters of the year; at Yellow Head), Cormorant, 4 Golden Plover, Whimbrel, 13 Curlew, 12 Turnstone, Ruff, 11 Dunlin, 4 Common Sandpiper, 4 Green Sandpiper, 23 Redshank, Cuckoo, 43 Skylark, 2 Swallow, Reed Warbler (Meadow Burn), Garden Warbler (Plantation), 250 Wheatear, 166 Meadow Pipit, 178 Rock Pipit, 140 Twite, 3 Linnet, Crossbill (juvenile on South Green).

Other wildlife: 70 Painted Lady (a large decrease in numbers compared to recent days).

Year list: 187
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Saturday 3rd August 2019
Weather: northerly wind, force 2, no rain with 2/8 cloud cover and very good visibility.

Highlights:

Barred Warbler: Stackhoull
Marsh Warbler: the ringed bird in the Plantation

Other sightings:

Teal, Red-breasted Merganser, 3 Grey Heron, Golden Plover, Whimbrel, 7 Curlew, 16 Turnstone, 5 Dunlin, 3 Purple Sandpiper, Common Sandpiper, 2 Green Sandpiper, Greenshank, Cuckoo, 30 Skylark, 2 Swallow, 2 Chiffchaff, Sedge Warbler, 2 Reed Warbler (Plantation and Meadow Burn), Garden Warbler (Plantation), Robin (Gully), 200 Wheatear, White Wagtail, 161 Meadow Pipit, 131 Rock Pipit, 109 Twite, Crossbill (one south then at South Light).

Other wildife:
2 Red Admiral, 961 Painted Lady, 7 Peacock, Bedstraw Hawkmoth (one trapped overnight at Burkle), 2 Silver Y, Diamondback Moth, 2 Green Lacewing (Schoolhouse).

Year list: 187
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Friday 2nd August 2019
Weather: northwesterly wind, force 1-2, no rain with a foggy start dispelling into variable quantities of cloud cover through the day resulting in visibilty ranging from poor to good.

Highlights:
Barred Warbler: still in the North Haven
Hawfinch: still roaming the Isle

Other sightings:

Red-breasted Merganser, 'blue' Fulmar (Malcolm's Head), 4 Golden Plover, Whimbrel, 19 Curlew, 28 Turnstone, Ruff, 3 Sanderling, 6 Dunlin, 31 Purple Sandpiper, 2 Common Sandpiper, 4 Green Sandpiper, 21 Redshank, 23 Common Gull, Cuckoo, Kestrel (Gully), 43 Skylark, 2 Willow Warbler, Reed Warbler, Garden Warbler (Plantation), 176 Wheatear, 135 Meadow Pipit, 140 Rock Pipit, 78 Twite.

Other wildife:
552 Painted Lady, Peacock, Silver Y.

Year list: 187
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Thursday 1st August 2019
Weather: light E wind becoming W wind, although remaining rather calm. Foggy for most of the day, clearing slightly for a while in the afternoon before returning again in the evening.
First census of the autumn (so there's a full species list below) and a continued small arrival of early migrants.

Highlights:

Barred Warbler: 2; one at Schoolton that then roamed in the south, with another at the North Haven pier later in the day; joint-earliest ever record
Marsh Warbler: still at the Obs
Hawfinch: the female again roaming around the south

Other sightings:

Red-breasted Merganser, Red-throated Diver, 116 Storm Petrel (115 trapped overnight, with one seen from the Good Shepherd), 83 Oystercatcher, 7 Lapwing, 4 Golden Plover, 14 Ringed Plover, 4 Whimbrel, 20 Curlew, Bar-tailed Godwit (breeding-plumaged adult at Meadow Burn; first of the year), 59 Turnstone, 5 Sanderling, 3 Dunlin, 36 Purple Sandpiper, 18 Snipe, 3 Common Sandpiper, 5 Green Sandpiper, 22 Redshank, 7 Black-headed Gull, 324 Common Gull, Cuckoo (juvenile Springfield), Kestrel (south through the Haven; first of the autumn), 42 Skylark, 2 Swallow, 2 Willow Warbler (adult in the south and juvenile at the Obs; first of the autumn), 2 Chiffchaff (both summering birds), 2 Reed Warbler (Plantation and Meadow Burn), Garden Warbler (trapped in the Gully), Fieldfare (Kirki Mire), Robin (Gully), 136 Wheatear, 13 Pied Wagtail, 135 Meadow Pipit, 109 Rock Pipit, 103 Twite.

Other species present:
Mallard, Eider, Fulmar, Gannet, Shag, Kittiwake, Great Black-backed Gull, Herring Gull, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Arctic Tern, Bonxie, Arctic Skua, Common Guillemot, Razorbill, Tystie, Puffin, Rock Dove, Hooded Crow, Raven, 'Fair Isle Wren', Starling, House Sparrow.

Arctic Skua, Parks (Max Hellicar). One of this season's successfully fledged youngsters in the best season for the species since at least 2016)

Other wildife:
Minke Whale (off Dronger)
Red Admiral, 364 Painted Lady, 2 Silver Y, Diamondback Moth.

Painted Lady, North Haven, 30th July (Max Hellicar); the first census of the autumn gave a better indication of the numbers present across the Isle compared to recent days.

Year list: 187
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Wednesday 31st July 2019
Weather: light NE winds, with fog at first clearing to a reasonable afternoon

Highlights:

lcterine Warbler: 2; a lingering ringed bird and a new 1cy was trapped at Burkle (three Icterine Warblers in July is distinctly unusual)
Leach's Petrel: 2 trapped in the Haven overnight
Hawfinch: the female again ranging in the south

Other sightings:

2 Shelduck (adult and juvenile on Da Water), Red-breasted Merganser, 188 Storm Petrel (trapped overnight), 3 Lapwing, Knot, Ruff (one over the airstrip then on Meoness; first of the year), Sanderling, 3 Dunlin, Purple Sandpiper, 2 Common Sandpiper, 4 Green Sandpiper, 20 Redshank, Cuckoo (juvenile Springfield), Reed Warbler (still in Meadow Burn), 2 Linnet (female with a recently fledged juvenile around the Vaadal; second confirmed successful breeding record for Fair Isle).

Other wildife:
176 Painted Lady, 2 Green Lacewing.

Year list: 185
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Tuesday 30th July 2019
Weather: largely foggy, with some clearing later on, light E wind.

Highlights:

Icterine Warbler: one of the ringed birds was at the Chalet
Hawfinch: female on the feeders at Schoolhouse

Other sightings:
Golden Plover, Whimbrel, 23 Turnstone, Sanderling, Green Sandpiper, 18 Redshank, Chiffchaff (a summering bird at the Chapel Plantation), Sedge Warbler (Meadow Burn), Reed Warbler (Meadow Burn; first of the autumn and earliest autumn arrival date since 2008), Linnet.

Other wildife:
Red Admiral, 61 Painted Lady, Peacock, Diamond Backmoth.

Year list: 184
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Monday 29th July 2019
Weather: northeasterly wind, force 2-3, no rain with 6/8 cloud cover descending into fog through the day resulting in a decrease visibility from good to poor.

Highlights:

Marsh Warbler: an adult seen briefly in the Plantation was later trapped in the Gully
Icterine Warbler: an adult trapped in the Plantation was a different bird to the one caught yesterday
Hawfinch: the female wasat South Light

Other sightings:

Grey Heron, Golden Plover, Whimbrel, 2 Dunlin, Common Sandpiper, 9 Green Sandpiper, 3 Redshank, 89 Common Gull, Black Guillemot (first fledged chick seen; in North Haven), 3 Cuckoo (juveniles), Chiffchaff (lingering bird at Plantation), Garden Warbler (Stackhoull; first of the autumn and earliest autumn arrival since 2006), Spotted Flycatcher (Guidicum; first of the autumn and earliest autumn migrant since 2015), Robin (Gully), Linnet.

Other wildife:
13 Painted Lady, 2 Silver Y, 2 Bedstraw Hawkmoth (one at Homisdale, one at Aesterhoull).

Year list: 184
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Sunday 28th July 2019

Highlights:

Icterine Warbler: an adult trapped in the Plantation was an early autumn arrival
Hawfinch: a female in the Plantation

Other sightings:

Whimbrel, 2 Knot, Common Sandpiper, 4 Green Sandpiper, 22 Redshank, Collared Dove, Cuckoo (juvenile, Utra), Sedge Warbler (Meadow Burn; first of the autumn and first July arrival since 2011), Linnet, 2 Crossbill (females, Obs).

Other wildife:
Red Admiral, 50 Painted Lady, Peacock.

Year list: 183
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Saturday 27th July 2019

Sightings:

Storm Petrel (from the Good Shepherd IV), 2 Grey Heron, 2 Whimbrel, Dunlin, 2 Purple Sandpiper, Green Sandpiper, Kittiwake (first fledged youngsters seen at Green Holm), 345 Common Gull, Arctic Skua (first fledged chick seen; in the Parks), Cuckoo (juvenile, Field), Swift.

Other wildife:
8 Risso's Dolphin (see to the North of the Isle from a plane)
70 Painted Lady, 2 Peacock.
Bedstraw Hawkmoth (although moth trap sightings from around the Isle are not usually reported here, this was a special one! The first of this species to be recorded on the Isle since 2007 was caught at Lower Stoneybrek)

Bedstraw Hawkmoth, Lower Stoneybrek (Max Hellicar)

Year list: 183
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Friday 26th July 2019
Weather: sunny, although with a little haze and a fresh E or SE wind.

Sightings:

Red-breasted Merganser, 2 Grey Heron, Moorhen, 3 Lapwing, 22 Turnstone, 2 Knot, 12 Sanderling, Dunlin, 2 Purple Sandpiper, 6 Common Sandpiper (a single flock in Muckle Uri Geo in the evening; first of the month), 2 Green Sandpiper (Gully and Muckle Uri Geo; first of the autumn), 8 Redshank, 188 Common Gull, Great Skua (first fledged chick seen; at Suka Mire), Arctic Tern (a minimum of 45 fledged youngsters seen in the Buness colony, with some smaller chicks still present, making at a rather good year for this species), Cuckoo (juvenile at Utra), 2 Chiffchaff, Robin (Gully), Black Redstart (North Raeva; first of the autumn), Linnet.

Other wildife:
Red Admiral, 2 Peacock, 22 Painted Lady.

Year list: 183
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Thursday 25th July 2019
Weather: a SE breeze, quite strong at times, largely sunny.

Highlights:

Leach's Petrel: one seen around the nets in the early hours

Other sightings:

253 Storm Petrel (238 new birds and 15 recaptures), Grey Heron, Moorhen, 3 Whimbrel, 6 Turnstone, Knot, 3 Dunlin, 5 Purple Sandpiper, 11 Redshank, 215 Common Gull, 2 Swift, Sand Martin, 2 Linnet.

Other wildife:
5+ Painted Lady.

Year list: 183
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Wednesday 24th July 2019
Weather: although windy and cloudy at first, a calm evening saw perfect Stormying conditions, with a waning gibbous moon being largely hidden by cloud (although it was never fully dark - still, it was nice to see stars again).

Sightings:

Moorhen, 44 Turnstone, 7 Sanderling, 4 Dunlin, 2 Purple Sandpiper, 14 Black-headed Gull, 114 Common Gull, 120 Arctic Tern (South Light), Sand Martin, Chiffchaff, Robin (Plantation), 3 Linnet.

Other wildife:
Painted Lady (still present).

Year list: 183
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Tuesday 23rd July 2019
Weather: foggy at first, but clearing with a light southerly-based wind..

Sightings:

Red-throated Diver, Moorhen, 9 Lapwing, 3 Whimbrel, 11 Turnstone, 2 Swift, Peregrine, Chiffchaff, Robin (Gully), 6 Common Crossbill (South Light).

Other wildife:
2+ Painted Lady.

Year list: 183
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Monday 22nd July 2019
Weather: a light SE wind, dropping away to a calm afternoon. Although some fog and drizzle early on, it cleared to a pleasant, warm afternoon.

Sightings:

Grey Heron, Golden Plover, 2 Whimbrel, 2 Turnstone, 5 Knot (Muckle Uri Geo; first of the autumn), 5 Sanderling, Dunlin, 84 Common Gull, Short-eared Owl (Da Water), 2 Swift, Chiffchaff, Linnet, Common Crossbill.

Other wildife:
2 Painted Lady.

Year list: 183
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Sunday 21st July 2019
Weather: SE3/4, with some cloud and good visibility.

Sightings:

2 Grey Heron, Moorhen, Golden Plover, 2 Whimbrel, 8 Turnstone, Purple Sandpiper, 73 Common Gull, Swift, 2 House Martin, Robin (Plantation).

Other wildife:
6 Painted Lady.

Year list: 183
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Saturday 20th July 2019
Weather: A horrible day, with fog for most of the day, heavy rain early on and a moderate SE wind becoming SW later. Another day that must make it hard for seabirds that still have young chicks.

Sightings:

2 Golden Plover, 34 Turnstone, 9 Sanderling, 4 Dunlin (Muckle Uri Geo), 44 Purple Sandpiper, Linnet.

Other wildife:
Painted Lady.

Year list: 183
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Friday 19th July 2019
Weather: SE3, some cloud with good visibility.

Sightings:

Moorhen, Turnstone, 14 Black-headed Gull, Swift, Robin (Gully), 3 Common Crossbill.

Other wildife:
2 Painted Lady.

Year list: 183
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Thursday 18th July 2019
Weather: a foggy start, but then sunshine! We got the first plane since Friday as the weather cleared to a lovely, warm, sunny afternoon.

Highlights:
TWO -BARRED CROSSBILL: a single female around South Raeva

Other sightings:

4 Grey Heron, Moorhen, Oystercatcher (first fledged chicks, at North Light), Golden Plover, 3 Whimbrel, 5 Turnstone, 3 Dunlin, 51 Common Gull (with southerly passage noted), Arctic Tern (a minimum of 37 fledged birds in the Buness colony, whilst the flock at South Light is building up), Willow Warbler (Schoolton), Chiffchaff (the summering bird still at the Obs), Fieldfare, Robin (Gully), Linnet (male Double Dyke), Common Crossbill (one at South Raeva, with two other 'crossbill sp?' noted flying over).

Other wildife:
7 Painted Lady.

Year list: 183
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Wednesday 17th July 2019
Weather: fog, some drizzle, not really very nice.

Highlights:
TWO -BARRED CROSSBILL: 6; all at South Raeva, with two males, three females and a juvenile. It is certainly possible that the female is the same that was on Lerness recently.

Other sightings:

Red-breasted Merganser, 38 Storm Petrel (trapped overnight in the Haven), Grey Heron, Moorhen, Whimbrel, 6 Turnstone, 3 Sanderling, Dunlin, 2 Purple Sandpiper, Robin.

Year list: 183
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Tuesday 16th July 2019
Weather: foggy, with the wind dropping away to virtually nothing later on.

Highlights:
Arctic Warbler: still present at the Obs, although elusive
Leach's Petrel: one heard in South Haven during a petrel-ringing session (first of the year)

Other sightings:

33 Storm Petrel (trapped in the Haven in the early hours, including 27 'new' birds), 2 Grey Heron (first of the month), Golden Plover, Turnstone, 2 Purple Sandpiper, Chiffchaff (Obs), Fieldfare (Obs), Robin (Gully), 'Mealy Redpoll' (male again at Obs).

Other wildife:
10 Painted Lady.

Year list: 183
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Monday 15th July 2019
Weather: a day full of fog, again scuppering plans for seabird work.

Highlights:
TWO-BARRED CROSSBILL: 5; the lingering flock of 2 males, 2 females and a juvenile at South Raeva
Arctic Warbler: heard at the Obs, although not showing

Other sightings:

Moorhen (Da Water), House Martin, Chiffchaff (Obs), Fieldfare (Obs), 'Mealy Redpoll' (male, Obs).

Other wildife:
2 Painted Lady.

Year list: 182
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Sunday 14th July 2019
Weather: another day of poor weather, although the worst of the fog did lift for a while in the afternoon. Light NW wind.

Highlights:
TWO-BARRED CROSSBILL: 6; the flock of 5 (2m, 2f, juv) at South Raeva and a female that was probably responsible for sightings at North Naaversgill and Lerness.
Arctic Warbler: still present at the Obs.

Other sightings:

4 Golden Plover, 2 Whimbrel, Dunlin (in the North), 9 Redshank, 7 Black-headed Gull, Swift, House Martin, Willow Warbler (Schoolton), Chiffchaff (Lower Stoneybrek), Fieldfare (trapped in the Plantation).

Other wildife:
2 Red Admiral, 15 Painted Lady, Silver Y.

Year list: 182
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Saturday 13th July 2019
Weather: foggy and damp, eventually clearing in the evening, allowing Green Holm to be visited for Puffin productivity monitoring (although it did result in a long day for the Wardening team - still, nothing that homemade kebab and a viewing of Muppet Treasure Island couldn't fix!). No Two-barred Crossbills were recorded, although the weather and then seabird monitoring prevented the areas that have been occupied recently being checked. Still, there was a surprise lurking in the Obs garden...

Highlights:
Arctic Warbler: an adult at the Obs showed well at times, although could be elusive in the garden. The fifth record for July (and first in this month since 2002), if accepted then this will be the 98th Arctic Warbler for Fair Isle.

Arctic Warbler, Obs (David Parnaby)

Other sightings:

2 Red-breasted Merganser (South Harbour), Moorhen (Da Water), Turnstone, 4 Purple Sandpiper, 14 Redshank, Short-eared Owl (School Brae), Swift, House Martin, Chiffchaff (Obs), Fieldfare (Obs).

Year list: 182
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Friday 12th July 2019
Weather: light NE winds, swinging to the west later, largely cloudy. A 3am start for the wardening team to look at Puffin prey items at the colony at Tor o' Da Ward Hill, with a bit of Arctic Skua chick ringing afterwards followed immediately by Sheep Hill (the rounding up of the Hill Sheep), then an afternoon of analysing Puffin prey and visiting the Razorbill colony at Easter Lother. All the Shags and Guillemots and almost all the Razorbills had fledged at the latter site as the end of the seabird season rapidly approaches. No real time for birding, but still an interesting mix of species noted.

Highlights:
TWO-BARRED CROSSBILL: 14 (8 males, 6 females); the regular flock of 9 at Triola, a female still at the Naaversgills and 4 (2 males 2 females) at South Raeva. Mostly these were seen by the Wardening team whilst chasing sheep!

Other sightings:

Red-throated Diver (circling in the North, calling), Storm Petrel (remains of a dead bird found on top of Ward Hill), Whimbrel, 2 Dunlin (on breeding grounds), Black-headed Gull (first passage juvenile of the autumn, over the airstrip), Swift (first of the month; over Da Water), 4 Carrion Crow, Sand Martin (first of the month; over Da Water), 3 Crossbill (Tor o' da Ward Hill).

Other wildife:
20 Painted Lady, Diamond-back moth.

Year list: 181
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Thursday 11th July 2019
Weather: foggy at first, although clearing later, NE winds.

Highlights:
TWO-BARRED CROSSBILL: 16 (nine males, 6 females and a juvenile), a record count for the Isle. The flock of nine (six males, three females) still at Troila, two (male and female) at the Naaversgills, three (two males and a juvnile) at South Raeva and two females at Linni.

Other sightings:

Storm Petrel (one around the Skadan in the evening), Moorhen (still on Da Water), Whimbrel, Dunlin (one still in North), 3 Purple Sandpiper (South Light; first of the autumn), 17 Redshank, Black-headed Gull (adult), House Martin (first of the month), Willow Warbler (Schoolton), Chiffchaff, Fieldfare (Schoolton), Robin (Plantation), Crossbill.

Other wildife:
15 Painted Lady, Large White.

Year list: 181
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Wednesday 10th July 2019
Weather: thick fog for the day and rather muggy.

Highlights:
TWO-BARRED CROSSBILL: ten. A flock of nine at the south of Troila (six males, three females) and a lone male to the norh of Troila.

Two-barred Crossbills, Troila Geo (Max Hellicar)

Other sightings:

4 Whimbrel, 24 Redshank, Chiffchaff, Robin (Gully), Crossbill (female, Obs).

Other wildife:
3 Painted Lady.

Year list: 181
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Tuesday 9th July 2019
Weather: Initially sunny with a light NE force 2-3, this freshened during the day with increasing cloud cover and stronger winds bringing rain in the evening.

Highlights:
TWO-BARRED CROSSBILL: 7 (minimum); following a male at Guidicum that called down another male and two females, a flock of seven (4 female-types and 3 males) flew north over Troila. These sightings (and a lone female seen at Guidicum after the initial sighting) were all assumed to relate to the same individuals, although in truth more individuals could have been involved. The fourth-earliest arrival for the species on Fair Isle, there are 28 previous records of 59 individuals for the Isle.

Other sightings:

Red-throated Diver (north over Buness), 2 Whimbrel, 3 Turnstone, Dunlin (one in the North was acting in a way to suggest a successful nesting attempt had taken place), 18 Redshank, Guillemot (a fledged chick seen from the Good Shepherd!), Woodpigeon, Willow Warbler (Schoolton), Blackbird (female in the Plantation), Robin (Plantation), 8 Crossbill (scattered across the Isle, although none of them associated with the Two-barred Crossbills).

Other wildife:
35+ Painted Lady.

Year list: 181
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Monday 8th July 2019
Weather: A pleasant day with light westerly force 2 breeze and unbroken sunshine.

Highlights:
Hawfinch: the female in the Plantation first thing.
Quail: one flushed from the east road.

Other sightings:
Storm Petrel (from Good Shepherd), Arctic Tern (first fledged chicks seen, on Buness), Chiffchaff, 2 Linnet.

Other wildife:
4 Red Admiral, 50+ Painted Lady, 3 Silver Y.

Year list: 180
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Sunday 7th July 2019
Weather: Winds remained from the NW and remained around force 4-5 with complete cloud cover and the odd light shower.

Highlights:
Hawfinch: a female at Brecks that was later trapped at the Plantation.

Other sightings:
Moorhen (Da Water), 50 Oystercatcher (in the non-breeding/failed breeder flock at Meadow Burn), 24 Lapwing (Kirki Mire), 2 Chiffchaff, Robin (Gully), Linnet (male), Crossbill (female in the Plantation).

Year list: 180
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Saturday 6th July 2019
Weather: Force 5 NNW winds dominated the day, accompanied by occasional sunny spells, it was at least dry.

Sightings:
Greylag Goose, Gadwall (male, Da Water), 4 Red-breasted Merganser, Moorhen (Da Water), Golden Plover, Whimbrel, 20 Redshank, Chiffchaff, Robin (Stackhoull).

Other wildife:
18 Painted Lady.

Year list: 180
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Friday 5th July 2019
Weather: A day with initially lighter winds from the SW increasing through the day, with frequent rain showers and odd spells of sunshine.

Sightings:
Gadwall (male Da Water), Wigeon, Whimbrel, 2 Turnstone, 30 Redshank, Ring Ouzel (one seen briefly as it flew off the Houll).

Year list: 180
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Thursday 4th July 2019
Weather: An overcast day with force 4-5 W winds, poor visibility and rain throughout the day.

Sightings:
Gadwall (male still on Da Water), Wigeon, Storm Petrel (from Good Shepherd), Manx Shearwater (South Light), Moorhen (presumably the same bird relocated to Da Water), 4 Whimbrel, 31 Curlew, Dunlin (Muckle Uri Geo), 13 Redshank, Chiffchaff.

Year list: 180
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Wednesday 3rd July 2019
Weather: A switch to SW winds remaining breezy with sunny spells.

Sightings:
Gadwall (male relocated on Da Water), Wigeon, Moorhen (one in the Gully was an unusual mid-summer record), 4 Redshank, 3 Chiffchaff, Robin (Gully), Linnet (male).

Other wildife:
23 Painted Lady, Silver Y.

Year list: 180
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Tuesday 2nd July 2019
Weather: Another breezy day, remaining in the NW, with mostly sunny conditions.

Sightings:
Wigeon, Storm Petrel (from Good Shepherd), Cormorant, 9 Redshank, Arctic Tern (12 2CY birds at South Light), 3 Collared Dove, Razorbill (chicks fledged from the Easter Lother study plot), Woodpigeon, Chiffchaff, Linnet (male).

Other wildife:
2 Red Admiral, 19 Painted Lady.

Year list: 180
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Monday 1st July 2019
Weather: A cloudy day with a breezy force 4 NW and light rain

Sightings:
Greylag Goose, Gadwall (an eclipse male on Golden Water; first record since 2017), Wigeon, 2 Red-breasted Merganser, Manx Shearwater (South Light), Whimbrel, Turnstone, 11 Redshank, 2 Collared Dove, Chiffchaff.

Year list: 180
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Sunday 30th June 2019
Weather: a foggy start, with a clearer afternoon, although rain from around 3pm. A freshening wind becoming WSW.

Sightings:
Tufted Duck (male, Da Water), 2 Red-breasted Merganser, 2 Redshank, 2 Collared Dove, 3 Swift, Chiffchaff, Linnet (male).

Other wildife:
2 Red Admiral, 15 Painted Lady.

Year list: 179
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Saturday 29th June 2019
Weather: sunny! warm! with a southerly-based wind. Ideal for seabird work, although a large SE swell was no good for the boat work.

Sightings:
Grey Heron, Redshank, 2 Collared Dove, Swift, Chiffchaff, ‘Mealy Redpoll’ (Obs).

Other wildife:
4 Red Admiral, 20+ Painted Lady, 3 Silver Y, 15 Diamond-back Moth.

Year list: 179
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Friday 28th June 2019
Weather: calm at first, although a freshening wind from the SE, with fog arriving from mid-morning and lingering until the evening, which somewhat scuppered seabird work.

HIGHLIGHTS:
Citrine Wagtail: seen in flight over Quoy and then later on Da Water.

Other sightings:
Grey Heron, 3 Redshank, Kittiwake (first chicks seen, at Green Holm and Dog Geo), 2 Woodpigeon, Collared Dove, 2 Chiffchaff, Robin (Stackhoull), Linnet (the species has been seen nest-building on the Isle in the last week).

Year list: 179
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Thursday 27th June 2019
Weather: fairly light westerly-based winds, with occasional low cloud. Ideal for getting around the east coast in the Obs boat for seabird monitoring and ringing, with signs looking quite promising for several species.

HIGHLIGHTS:
Citrine Wagtail: a male at Da Water; the fifth spring record, but remarkably, the second of the year following one on 14th May.

Other sightings:
Red-breasted Merganser,Sanderling, Woodpigeon, Collared Dove, Robin (Gully).

Other wildife:
Painted Lady (smaller numbers).

Year list: 179
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Wednesday 26th June 2019
Weather: a calmer day, although still rather grey with some low cloud and drizzle later on.

HIGHLIGHTS:
Common Rosefinch: one at Schoolton was, interestingly, ringed on the left leg.

Other sightings:
Eider (first ducklings of the year seen in several locations), Red-breasted Merganser, Grey Heron, 7 Whimbrel, Turnstone, Redshank, Arctic Skua (first chick seen; in the Parks), Chiffchaff, Spotted Flycatcher (trapped in Gully).

Other wildife:
Painted Lady (small numbers still).

Year list: 179
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Tuesday 25th June 2019
Weather: a fresh NE wind and cloudy.

Sightings:
Greylag Goose, Grey Heron, Whimbrel, 6 Chiffchaff, Robin (Gully), 2 Linnet.

Other wildife:
2 Large White, 7 Red Admiral, 10+ Painted Lady, 10 Silver Y, 2 Diamond-back Moth.

Year list: 179
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Monday 24th June 2019
Weather: low cloud and a fresh NE wind..

Sightings:
Mallard (first ducklings of the year seen, with broods in the Vaadal and Da Water), Chiffchaff, 2 Linnet.

Other wildife:
2 Large White, Painted Lady (a few still), Silver Y, 2 Diamond-back Moth.

Year list: 179
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Sunday 23rd June 2019
Weather: a light or slightly fresh ENE breeze, cloudy at first but the forecast fog never appeared and the sun shone until well into the afternoon. A perfect day for seabird monitoring and the wardening team were in the boat for the majority of the day, so sightings elsewhere were very limited.

Sightings:
10 Greylag Goose, 3 Collared Dove, Chiffchaff, Robin, 'Mealy Redpoll' (Schoolhouse).

Other wildife:
10+ Painted Lady, Diamond-back Moth

Year list: 179
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Saturday 22nd June 2019
Weather: rather pleasant, with sunshine and a light or moderate SW breeze. A good day for catching up on Bonxie monitoring, with the majority of the areas mapped an early indications suggesting just under 500 pairs this year, which seems to be roughly where the population is stabilising.

Sightings:
3 Greylag Goose, Whimbrel, 2 Collared Dove, 2 House Martin, Chiffchaff, 'White Wagtail' (an apparent summering bird at the Obs), 2 Linnet, Yellowhammer.

Other wildife:
27 Painted Lady, Red Admiral, Diamond-back Moth

Year list: 179
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Friday 21st June 2019
Weather: the longest day, it's all autumn from hereon in. Not very pleasant weather, with a generally blustery, cloudy and cool day with occasional showers, although it improved slightly towards afternoon.

Sightings:
15 Greylag Goose, Grey Heron, Woodpigeon, 2 Collared Dove, Swift, 2 Chiffchaff, Blackcap (male, Gully).

Other wildife:
22 Painted Lady.

Year list: 179
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Thursday 20th June 2019
Weather: Somewhat murky for a lot of the day, although a brighter evening.

HIGHLIGHTS:
EASTERN OLIVACEOUS WARBLER: again seen briefly at Schoolton.

Other sightings:
Greylag Goose, 2 Grey Heron, Golden Plover, 3 Collared Dove, House Martin, 2 Chiffchaff, Blackcap (female, Gully), Spotted Flycatcher (Lower Leogh), Robin, Dunnock, Yellowhammer (Burkle).

Other wildife:
18 Painted Lady, 10+ Diamond-back Moth

Year list: 179
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Wednesday 19th June 2019
Weather: a light SE wind, freshening from the SW. Sunny at first (the best drying day of the year by far), although some light rain late afternoon when it became somewhat cloudier. A busy day for seabird monitoring, which took up most of the staff time, although there were still some good birds on the Isle.

HIGHLIGHTS:
EASTERN OLIVACEOUS WARBLER: again seen briefly, this time around Barkland, before heading south.
'EASTERN SUBALPINE WARBLER': a male at Schoolton; presumably all three sightings this month have related to the same (elusively) lingering bird.
Common Rosefinch: the oiled bird still in the south.
Quail: 2; one singing near Busta and another at Yellow Head.

Other sightings:
Greylag Goose, 2 Grey Heron, Turnstone, 11 Black-headed Gull (the first double-figure count of the month), Collared Dove, Swift, 10 Swallow, 2 House Martin, 5 Chiffchaff, Blackbird (female, Lower Leogh), Redwing (a singing bird in the Gully), Spotted Flycatcher (Lower Leogh), Wheatear (first fledged youngsters seen), 'White Wagtail'.

Other wildife:
KILLER WHALE: 3, includinga bull, seen from North Light at around 1500hrs as they headed east
204+ Painted Lady, 6 Red Admiral, 50+ Diamond-back Moth

Year list: 179
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Tuesday 18th June 2019
Weather: fresh south-easterly, cold at times with some showers.

HIGHLIGHTS:
RIVER WARBLER: still present, although relocated to the Gully where it was typically elusive.
Red-backed Shrike: female in the Parks.
Common Rosefinch: 2; the oiled bird at Schoolton and another in the Plantation.

Other sightings:
Greylag Goose, Teal (male), Manx Shearwater (one off South Light), Grey Heron, Cuckoo (in north), 2 Dunlin, 2 Woodpigeon, Collared Dove, Swift, 6 Swallow, House Martin, 4 Chiffchaff, Blackcap (female, Plantation), Garden Warbler (Plantation), Spotted Flycatcher (Plantation), 'White Wagtail', Twite (first fledged youngsters seen), Siskin.

Other wildife:
15 Painted Lady, Red Admiral, 5 Diamond-back Moth

Year list: 179
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Monday 17th June 2019
Weather: a fresh to moderate SSE wind, a few showers, although a more pleasant late afternoon when the sun came out and the wind eased slightly.

HIGHLIGHTS:
EASTERN OLIVACEOUS WARBLER: still present, although it was only seen briefly at Schoolton.
Common Rosefinch: one at Schoolton that appeared to be oiled.
Quail: at Chalet, where it became a rare twitchable individual.

Other sightings:
9 Greylag Goose, Teal (male), Red-throated Diver (one 'singing' over the North of the Isle), Cuckoo (in north), Long-eared Owl (the oiled bird still present at the Obs), Kestrel, 12 Swallow, 3 House Martin, 4 Chiffchaff, Robin, Grey Wagtail (Gully), Linnet (male).

Other wildife:
61 Painted Lady, Red Admiral, small numbers of Diamond-back Moth

Year list: 179
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Sunday 16th June 2019
Weather: a light or moderate SE wind easing for a while then freshening later, some foggy spells at first then largely sunny.

HIGHLIGHTS:
EASTERN OLIVACEOUS WARBLER: one found at the Obs in the early afternoon was later trapped and was present at the Obs until around 5pm when it headed towards the Haven.
RIVER WARBLER: one glimpsed briefly at the Obs in the morning was trapped around lunchtime, but was not seen outside of these times.
Quail: one flushed from the Obs whilst opening the nets.



Eastern Olivaceous Warbler (top) and River Warbler, Obs (Sarah Harris)

Other sightings:
10 Greylag Goose, Teal (male), 3 Golden Plover, Dunlin (one at Mast acting as if it may have had chicks), Common Sandpiper, Woodpigeon, Collared Dove, 2 Cuckoo, Skylark (first fledged young seen), 10 Swallow, 2 House Martin, 3 Chiffchaff, Garden Warbler (Setter), Whitethroat (Obs), ‘Fair Isle Wren’ (first fledged chicks seen; at Finnequoy), Robin (Gully), Dunnock (Stackhoull and Chalet), Grey Wagtail (Gully), ‘White Wagtail’, Linnet.

Other wildife:
116+ Painted Lady, 3 Red Admiral, hundreds of Diamond-back Moth

Year list: 179
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Saturday 15th June 2019
Weather: a light SSE wind, with poor visibility at times.

HIGHLIGHTS:
Hobby: seen briefly again in the north

Other sightings:
Greylag Goose, Teal (male), Golden Plover, Whimbrel, Turnstone, Dunlin, Long-eared Owl (still at Obs, although looking badly oiled), Kestrel, 4 Swallow, House Martin, 2 Chiffchaff (including one singing in Gully), Lesser Whitethroat (Gully), Grey Wagtail (Gully), Meadow Pipit (first fledged bird seen).

Other wildife:
5 Red Admiral, 12 Painted Lady, Diamond-back Moth (still plenty, although fewer than yesterday)

Year list: 177
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Friday 14th June 2019
Weather: a strong SE wind, with rain in the afternoon.

HIGHLIGHTS:
Hobby: one seen several times across the Isle, presumably the one seen on 9th and 11th

Other sightings:
7 Greylag Goose, Teal (male), Oystercatcher (first chicks seen; at North Light and Buness), Ringed Plover (first fledged chick; on Buness), Dunlin, Arctic Tern (286 nests counted across the Isle and first chicks seen), Guillemot (first chicks seen; at Easter Lother and Pietron), Woodpigeon, Cuckoo (found dead in Gully), 7 Swallow (including a pair nest-building), Robin, Grey Wagtail (Gully), Common Crossbill (one at the Mast; first of the year).

Other wildife:
Large White (Schoolton), Red Admiral, 113 Painted Lady (a large arrival, with this count being a minimum number), Diamond-back Moth (a large arrival likely involving well over 1000).

Year list: 177
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Thursday 13th June 2019
Weather: a miserable day of rain and strong winds.

Sightings:
Greylag Goose, 2 Pink-footed Goose, Lapwing (first fledged youngsters seen), Woodpigeon, Cuckoo (Gully).

Year list: 176
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Wednesday 12th June 2019
Weather: strong NE or N wind, grey and cold, with occasional light showers. Little sign of movement, as expected given the weather, and feeling cold. Plenty juvenile Starlings in the traps at least!

HIGHLIGHTS:
Icterine Warbler: still present, at Schoolton

Other sightings:
7 Greylag Goose, 2 Pink-footed Goose, 3 Golden Plover, Cuckoo (Gully), Chiffchaff, Sedge Warbler, Blackcap, Robin, Pied Wagtail (first fledged chicks seen, at Lower Leogh).

Year list: 176
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Tuesday 11th June 2019
Weather: cloudy at first, with some low cloud and showers, but brightening up later as the wind started to freshen from the NW.

HIGHLIGHTS:
'EASTERN SUBALPINE WARBLER': presumably the male from 9th was at Lower Stoneybrek then Vaila's Trees
Icterine Warbler: the ringed bird from 9th still present, although relocated to Vaila's Trees
Hobby: presumably the bird from 9th seen at Ditfield then Wirvie

Other sightings:
4 Greylag Goose, 2 Pink-footed Goose, 2 Golden Plover, Bonxie (the first chicks seen; on High Holm), Cuckoo (still in Gully), 3 Swallow, 2 Chiffchaff, Reed Warbler, Blackcap, 2 Garden Warbler, Spotted Flycatcher, Robin, Dunnock (Lower Stoneybrek).

Other wildife:
3 Painted Lady

Year list: 176
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Monday 10th June 2019
Weather: a reasonable day of weather, with some sunshine and just a moderate SW wind.

HIGHLIGHTS:
Red-backed Shrike: an unringed female at Quoy
Hawfinch: female still in the south of the Isle

Other sightings:
Greylag Goose, 2 Pink-footed Goose, Sparrowhawk, 2 Golden Plover, Whimbrel, 2 Collared Dove, Cuckoo (one trapped), Kestrel, Merlin, 4 Swallow, 3 Chiffchaff, Reed Warbler, Blackcap, Garden Warbler, Fieldfare (Boini Mire), 3 Spotted Flycatcher, Robin, 'White Wagtail'.

Other wildife:
7+ Diamond-back Moth

Year list: 176
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Sunday 9th June 2019
Weather: NNW4, cloudy with heavy rain until mid-morning.

HIGHLIGHTS:
'EASTERN SUBALPINE WARBLER': a somewhat elusive male at Lower Leogh
Hobby: a 2CY bird around Boini Mire, the second of the year
Red-backed Shrike: still present
Hawfinch: female still at Brecks

'Eastern Subalpine Warbler', Lower Leogh (Richard Cope)

Other sightings:
Greylag Goose, 2 Pink-footed Goose, Great Northern Diver (one off South Light), Grey Heron, 6 Whimbrel, 4 Black-tailed Godwit, Dunlin, Razorbill (first chick seen, at Lericum), 2 Collared Dove, 3 Swallow, 2 Chiffchaff, Sedge Warbler, Reed Warbler (still in Plantation), Lesser Whitethroat, Spotted Flycatcher, Robin, Pied Flycatcher (female at the Mast), 2 'White Wagtail', 'Mealy Redpoll'.

Other wildife:
28 Diamond-back Moth

Year list: 176
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Saturday 8th June 2019
Weather: N3 with moderate cloud.

HIGHLIGHTS:
Icterine Warbler: one trapped in the Plantation
Red-backed Shrike: female trapped in the Vaadal
Melodious Warbler: still in the Plantation (where it provided a good comparison with the Icterine Warbler)
Hawfinch: female at Gunnawark then Brecks

Other sightings:
Greylag Goose, 2 Pink-footed Goose, 2 Teal, Storm Petrel (another freshly predated bird at the Obs), 3 Whimbrel, Dunlin, Cuckoo, Long-eared Owl (Stackhoull), Short-eared Owl, Kestrel, Merlin, 6 Swallow, 4 Chiffchaff, 2 Blackcap, Garden Warbler, Ring Ouzel (male trapped in Vaadal), 2 Spotted Flycatcher, 2 Robin, 'White Wagtail', Linnet, 'Mealy Redpoll'.

Other wildife:
2 Red Admiral

Year list: 176
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Friday 7th June 2019
Weather: SE3, decreasing later. After a bright early morning, some low cloud (and fog) rolled in before the sun emerged for a very pleasant afternoon (giving us a half-day of summer at last!).

HIGHLIGHTS:
Hawfinch: female at Tineside
Melodious Warbler: the ringed bird reappeared in the Plantation
Common Rosefinch: one still present at School
Marsh Harrier: the female still present, where it showed well around the airstrip

Other sightings:
Greylag Goose, 2 Pink-footed Goose, 3 Whimbrel, 2 Collared Dove, 2 Swift, Kestrel, Sand Martin, 24 Swallow, 5 House Martin, 2 Willow Warbler, Chiffchaff, Reed Warbler (singing bird trapped in the Plantation), 2 Blackcap, Garden Warbler, Lesser Whitethroat, Starling (lots of chicks now fledged), Fieldfare (Steensi Geo), 2 Spotted Flycatcher, 2 Robin, Dunnock (Stackhoull), Linnet, 2 'Mealy Redpoll'.

Other wildife:
Minke Whale
(one seen from the Airtask plane about three miles north-west of the Isle)
4 Red Admiral, 2 Painted Lady, 25 Diamond-back Moth, 'Cabbage White'

Year list: 176
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Thursday 6th June 2019
Weather: with a mizzly start bringing some low cloud, there was no chance to do a Guillemot count (as we couldn't see the Guillemots!), but the Hondius made it in with around 160 passengers. The cool north breeze was soon joined by heavy rain, but for the birders the weather didn't matter, as Fair Isle's 392nd species (not including 'isabelline shrike sp?') was found on the Isle - having earlier been seen 3km south of us by passengers on the cruise ship!

HIGHLIGHTS:
FRANKLIN'S GULL: an unexpected record involved one seen at around 6.45am from a cruiseship around 3km south of Fair Isle - a somewhat extraordinary way to add a species to the Fair Isle list! Just before 11am it was found in Mansie's Pund (opposite Chatham's Land and west of the Chalet garden), where it lingered for about 45 minutes before heading east until it reached the coast, turning north then not being seen again. New for the Isle and the 7th record for Shetland (and first since 2009). Ten of the last eleven additions to the Fair Isle list have now occured in the spring
Common Rosefinch: at least one still present
Marsh Harrier: the female seen in Homisdale in the morning

Other sightings:
Greylag Goose, 2 Pink-footed Goose, Storm Petrel (remains of a freshly predated bird were found at the Obs), 2 Whimbrel, 5 Collared Dove, Cuckoo (still present around Chatham's Land), Kestrel, 3 House Martin, Chiffchaff, Lesser Whitethroat, Spotted Flycatcher (Hesti Geo), 2 Robin, Dunnock (Chalet), Linnet.

Year list: 176
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Wednesday 5th June 2019
Weather: a brisk NE wind became NW later and it was cold, with drizzly conditions adding to the unpleasant feel to the day (that also saw flights cancelled), although the evening was more pleasant, with a spectacular sunset.

HIGHLIGHTS:
Blyth's Reed Warbler: one trapped in the Plantation in the evening; the 52nd record for Fair Isle and 16th in spring. A nice bonus considering it had been a quiet day for new arrivals and it has been a very quiet spring for acrocephalus warblers generally
Common Rosefinch: two still present, including one singing bird
Marsh Harrier: the female still roaming in the south

Other sightings:
3 Greylag Goose, 2 Pink-footed Goose, Tufted Duck (female), 'blue Fulmar' (one patrolling the cliffs at Pietron was later seen perched near Lericum), 7 Whimbrel, 4 Woodpigeon, 5 Collared Dove, Cuckoo, Short-eared Owl (Kenaby), Sand Martin, 20 Swallow, 2 Willow Warbler, 3 Robin (presumed summering individuals at School, Springfield and Gully), Black Redstart (School), 51 Wheatear, 2 White Wagtail, 30 Twite, 2 Linnet, 'Mealy Redpoll'.

Year list: 175
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Tuesday 4th June 2019
Weather: strong SSW winds put paid to the cruiseship that was due to land in the morning, but with a calming wind and flattening sea, one was able to make it in the afternoon (when the sun came out as well). With cruiseships, census, ringing and seabird monitoring, it was a busy day for the staff - and then a couple of elusive rarities in the evening meant it kept going! All good fun and it will be interesting to see if there are more new arrivals in the morning.

HIGHLIGHTS:
Melodious Warbler: one at Vaila's Trees moved to Lower Stoneybrek; the 20th for Fair Isle, 7th in the spring and first record since 2017
THRUSH NIGHTINGALE: a very elusive bird around the Shirva area in the evening; 65th record for Fair Isle
Common Rosefinch: 2 still around the School, including one singing
Marsh Harrier: female still present

Other sightings:
Greylag Goose, 2 Pink-footed Goose, Tufted Duck (female), Storm Petrel (from Good Shepherd), 8 Whimbrel, 2 Wood Sandpiper, 57 Lesser Black-backed Gull, 2 Woodpigeon, 5 Collared Dove, Long-eared Owl, 2 Kestrel, Merlin, 5 Carrion Crow, Sand Martin, 41 Swallow, 9 House Martin, 2 Willow Warbler, 6 Chiffchaff, 2 Sedge Warbler, 2 Blackcap, 2 Lesser Whitethroat, 3 Whitethroat, Ring Ouzel, 3 Spotted Flycatcher, Pied Flycatcher (Gully), 40 Wheatear, Grey Wagtail (female in South Haven), 22 Twite, 3 'Mealy Redpoll'.

Year list: 174
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Monday 3rd June 2019
Weather: a strong SW wind with occasional showers, with the afternoon in particular being really rather blustery. A decent day for birds though, with a few new arrivals.

HIGHLIGHTS:
Common Rosefinch: 2 at the School
Hobby: still present in the south of the Isle
Marsh Harrier: female in the Wirvie area

Other sightings:
Greylag Goose, 2 Pink-footed Goose, Tufted Duck (female), Red-throated Diver, 2 Golden Plover, 3 Whimbrel, Wood Sandpiper (Boini Mire), 37 Lesser Black-backed Gull, Arctic Skua (the first egg of the season was found), 8 Woodpigeon, Turtle Dove (after an abscence in 2018, it was pleasing to have one of these scarce visitors at Notrh Grind then later Stackhoull), 2 Collared Dove, Long-eared Owl (Obs and Lower Leogh), 2 Kestrel, 5 Carrion Crow, Raven (4 fledged chicks at Gunnawark), 3 Sand Martin, 53 Swallow, 27 House Martin, 2 Willow Warbler, 5 Chiffchaff, Sedge Warbler, 2 Blackcap, Garden Warbler, 3 Lesser Whitethroat, Starling (first fledged bird seen, at Setter), Ring Ouzel (Troila), 3 Blackbird, Fieldfare (Chatham's Land), 3 Spotted Flycatcher, Robin, Redstart (male, Leogh), 62 Wheatear, House Sparrow (first fledged bird seen), 'White Wagtail', Chaffinch (male), 26 Twite, 2 Linnet, 3 'Mealy Redpoll'.

Year list: 173
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Sunday 2nd June 2019
Weather: another day in which the weather was a significant factor (and not in a good way). A calm, sunny start lasted until about half past seven after which low cloud and rain dominated the day until the evening. Although there were a scatter of new birds, there didn't appear to be any large arrival, but the ability to find the one 'biggy' that is always hoped for in early June was limited by the conditions (although there was a pleasing addition to the year list found in a slightly brighter spell in the afternoon). On the plus side, the cruise ship scheduled for this morning made it in and the passengers who came ashore were treated to the delights of the very cooperative Puffins on Buness. The forecast is at least for sun tomorrow, so we're hoping for a better day in which we can get a few more jobs ticked off.

HIGHLIGHTS:
Hobby: one, probably a 2CY bird, flew along South Harbour and out towards Meoness in the afternoon; 66th record for the Isle of this increasingly regularly-recorded visitor.
Common Rosefinch: still present, spending most of the morning eating dandelions at the Schoolhouse.

Other sightings:
Greylag Goose, 2 Pink-footed Goose, 2 Teal, Tufted Duck (female), Red-throated Diver, 5 Whimbrel, Puffin (one seen carrying food on Buness showed that the first chick had hatched), 2 Woodpigeon, 3 Collared Dove, Cuckoo (Midway), Long-eared Owl (Lower Leogh), 3 Carrion Crow, 3 Swallow, 7 House Martin, 2 Willow Warbler, 2 Chiffchaff, Sedge Warbler, Grasshopper Warbler (the ringed bird still present at the Obs), Blackcap (female trapped in the Plantation), Garden Warbler (still in the Gully), 2 Lesser Whitethroat (including a new bird trapped in the Obs), 2 Blackbird, 2 Spotted Flycatcher, Robin (Schoolhouse), 'White Wagtail', Chaffinch (the male now singing at the Obs), Linnet, 2 'Mealy Redpoll'.

Other wildlife:
Diamond-back Moth - just small numbers today

Year list: 172
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Saturday 1st June 2019
Weather: with two cruise ships due in, as well as census and seabird monitoring, it was all set to be a very hectic day, but the weather played its part. A morning of heavy rain, strong SW wind and then fog scuppered plans for a Guillemot count and made the first cruise ship's visit somewhat soggy (although everyone seemed to enjoy themselves!) and, whilst the weather improved in the afternoon, with sunshine and an easing wind that veered more southerly, too much swell meant the second cruise ship didn't land. There were a few new arrivals, although typically for the time of year, numbers were small.

HIGHLIGHTS:
Common Rosefinch: a female or 2CY male at Midway.

Other sightings:
Greylag Goose, 2 Pink-footed Goose, Wigeon, 2 Teal, Tufted Duck (female), Red-breasted Merganser (female),Red-throated Diver, Golden Plover, 10 Whimbrel, Sanderling, 13 Dunlin, Woodcock (Wirvie Burn), 2 Wood Sandpiper (Golden Water), 2 Woodpigeon, Collared Dove, 2 Cuckoo (singles at Field Ditch and Stackhoull), 2 Long-eared Owl (lingering birds at Obs and Shirva), Kestrel, 4 Carrion Crow, 24 Swallow, 11 House Martin, Willow Warbler, 2 Chiffchaff, Sedge Warbler (trapped in Vaadal), Garden Warbler (trapped in Gully), 2 Lesser Whitethroat, Whitethroat, Ring Ouzel (Obs), 2 Blackbird, Robin (Springfield), Redstart, 'White Wagtail', Chaffinch (singing male now at Haa), Linnet, 'Mealy Redpoll', Reed Bunting.

Other wildlife:
75+ Diamond-back Moth

Year list: 171
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