Saturday 07 April – Sand Point Leader: – Paul Gregory

As the rain poured down I did wonder how many willing wanderers might brave the weather for a migrant search on Sand Point. In fact eight of us made it and within half an hour the rain stopped and the birds started to show. There were lots of Chiffchaffs and Blackcaps in the bushes but we failed to locate any Willow Warblers amongst them. Hirundine movement started soon after the rain and by the time we finished, over 200 Swallows had passed us heading east with a few House and Sand Martins to accompany them. A couple of Tree Pipits went over giving their “zip” calls and a nice Rock Pipit sat up on the rocks at the end of Sand Point allowing us to compare its greyness, black legs and strong black bill to the finer marked Meadow Pipits around. A male Wheatear gave us a bit of a run around but eventually gave itself up along the rocks on the south side. Middle Hope was quiet although we did locate a male Redstart along a hedgerow near the old admiralty site, which is always nice. A Peregrine gave good views on the return walk and we had regular encounters with Stonechats and Ravens. (Thank you Paul for leading.) Paul Gregory