The last few days have seen some rather good easterly winds. Shetland and Orkney have hit the jackpot with lots of good birds. It should be a piece of cake to find something good here on the Faroes.
But the situation on the Faroes is rather difficult. The weather here is very good and there is almost no wind at all. This means that arriving birds often continue at least further west than the Northern Islands where I live – or they arrive during the afternoon and only linger untill dusk before moving one.
Furthermore a significant decrease in temperatures (5 C or less) during the evenings causes the birds to move on. This means that many birds are only present for a few hours.
These conditions tend to be good on the western part of the Faroes, so it was no surprise that Rockmund sent a sms yesterday about several warblers being around in Sørvágur. He found both Wood Warbler and Yellow-browed there. I didn’t find anything good here.
Today I went out for a few hours. The conditions were pretty much the same as yesterday, but more birds were lingering. In Árnafirdi I found two Yellow-browed Warblers.
In Vidareidi birds were scattered all over the place, but I managed to find two Lesser Whitethroats, one Blackcap and a single Willow Warbler.
In Klaksvík a further two Yellow-browed were present in the plantation Úti í Grøv.
But the most exciting thing was when I took our youngest daughter to the kindergarten. On the way back I found a flock of about 20 Redpolls containing at least two Arctic Redpoll-types. Comments on the Arctic Redpoll-types are most welcome. But not the fine bill, buff colours and very fine bill and white rump.
When you think about the birds reported on the Faroes it is very important to know that only very few areas are checked for birds on a regular basis (i.e. weekly or more frequently). Those areas are marked on the map. Non of the areas are geographical hot stops. Imagine what you be found if the blue hot spots were covered regularly…
I think these redpolls (and many other redpolls these days) show characters of several forms inc. hornemanni, exilipes, rostrata and flammea, thus engaging in a traditional ID oriented discussion may not be the way forward.
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