Skomer Autumn Migration 2022
It was fantastic to be back on Skomer for this residential 3-night trip, the first of its kind since the similar autumn trip in 2019.
I was joined by Jo, Boby, Maria, Ceinwen, Jane and Cyril who turned out to be brilliant company, and full of questions and laughs. Such a pleasure when everyone gets into the swing of a trip like this!
The focus of the trip was getting to grips with autumn migrants, in terms of identification but also bird finding strategy. As is the case with all birding trips, sometimes the weather is in your favour, sometimes it isn’t, not something that can be controlled! We did pretty well, despite not finding a true rarity, our objectives were achieved and what a pleasure it was to virtually have the island to ourselves.
Bird highlights included a Goshawk, a rare bird on Skomer, which was terrorising residents and migrants alike. It was good to see both Spotted and Pied Flycatcher, never guaranteed in September here. Same goes for Whinchat which we managed to see at least 3 (probably 4) of as well as their commoner cousin the Stonechat. Great comparisons of birds in autumn plumage.
It was also brilliant to be able to compare Willow Warbler and Chiffchaff, Rock and Meadow Pipit, and Sedge and Reed Warbler. You just can’t beat field experience, with time to take in the salient features and discuss with like-minded people.
A juvenile Marsh Harrier was lovely to see, rarest of all (for Skomer) was probably the Tufted Duck that went quickly west past Skomer Head!
All in all a fabulous three days and nights on this stunning island, can’t wait to return for spring migration in April and autumn migration again in September 2023.
The eBird trip report for this trip can be viewed here: https://ebird.org/tripreport/74597