Being the time of year when winter visitors are departing whilst summer visitors are arriving was neatly illustrated by seeing 3 Whooper Swans flying towards Norwick followed a few minutes later by us seeing our a Chiffchaff in our rosa - the latter being our first for the year.
After a few passing showers early morning it soon became a bright sunny day. More good fortune as whilst again gardening today I heard the Gulls start alarming and looked skywards to see a Common Crane approaching high from the east, fly around the contour of the valley of Norwick and depart to the south - the second we have seen from our garden since living here.
Common Crane over Millfield, Norwick
Our previous earliest date for this species was 31/3.
A day staying at home gardening was considerably enlivened by the appearance of a pod of Killer Whales originally hugging the base of the cliffs of Lamba Ness eventually crossed the wick allowing us closer views until they continued south.
Red-throated Diver deciding it was time to depart!
The first we've seen this year and looking a little sleepy after its journey. Brydon had seen the first for the year in Baltasound a couple of hours earlier. It is the first March Collared Dove we have seen on Unst with the first arrivals in the last 3 years all falling in the first half of April.
A windy grey morning so perhaps no surpise that Glaucous Gulls were back on the agenda with a couple seen at Skaw. A look at Norwick added my first 3 Woodpigeons of the year. As we drove into Baltasound a panic was ensuing with lots of Greylags, Lapwings, 8 Woodpigeons and Starlings taking to the air and a trail of Hooded Crows gave away the presence of a Red Kite flying low through Daisy Park! It then flew to the hillside north of Setters Hill where we watched it circling for a while - the first we've seen on Shetland!
Skaw; 2 juv Glaucous Gulls, 8 Skylarks
Norwick; 3 Woodpigeons, 19 Skylarks
NorthDale; 10 Skylarks, Fieldfare, 2 Redwings
Baltasound; 20 Wigeon, Red Kite, 8 Woodpigeons
Woodpigeon at Norwick
my first for the year!
Red Kite at Baltasound
A very welcome unexpected bonus on making a visit to the shop, and with only just over 20 records for Shetland, it's no real surprise that it's the first that we've seen here.