Wind had swung into the southwest (at last!) overnight, and remained reasonably fresh with it until midmorning, when it eased somewhat. Dry and sunny for much of the day, the ground got a chance to dry out a little, and birding around the isle was less of an endurance test than yesterday.
Arrivals and departures. No sign of anything new in, but some familiar faces seen once again in the more clement conditions – 4 Robins, double figures of Blackbirds, the 3 Snow Buntings still in Brough, and the Chaffinch there too. White-fronted Geese had gone, as had the Garden Warbler at Saltness.
Came across a snipe in Brough that gave me cause for a double-take…
Got lots of photos of it crouching and eyeballing me right up until the point when a car came up behind me and hooted its horn (I was using my car as a hide on the single track road). Needless to say I jumped, the snipe flushed and flew, and I didn’t get any photos of it in flight as it bombed away at right angles to the road. I moved the car, and spent much of the afternoon returning to the spot in the vain hope it would have returned. Alas not. The snipe below are, just for the sake of comparison, a typical (adult, I think) faroeensis Snipe and the good candidate for (juvenile, with some adult-type feathers coming through – better seen in other photos) delicata from nearby in August. (Also see yesterday’s Nature in Shetland website for a photo by M Pennington of a Snipe on Unst).
Aren’t snipe ace? All constructive thoughts gratefully received.