Sunday, 8 September 2013

THE GOOD OLD DAYS: 19th October, 1991, Flamborough Head, Yorkshire.

A Desert Warbler of the Asian race S.n. nana was trapped by Paul Willoughby at Flamborough Head and released in the nearby South Landing Ravine on the 13th October, 1991 and showed well until the 5th November, 1991. We decided to twitch it with RJF and JK on the 19th October, 1991 and obtained some excellent views of this confiding bird which was still present at South Landing. At one time it approached us at very close range allowing me to obtain the following photograph.

It showed all the characters of the nominate race which breeds in deserts from the Caspian Sea and Southern Iran extending eastwards to Mongolia. It winters from the Middle East across to Northern India.

This was the 7th record of Desert Warbler for the UK with the first being found by Grahame Walbridge and then trapped at Portland Bill on the 16th December, 1970 and this stayed until the 2nd January, 1971.

We also had time to do a sea-watch from Flamborough Head and recorded 2 Little Auks, 5 Manx Shearwaters, 2 Bonxies and 2 Great Northern Divers.

Up to 2011 there have been 11 accepted records of the Asian race and none of the African race in the UK and in 2012, one was seen briefly at Sapphire Hoe in Kent, awaiting acceptance by BBRC, and if one should occur in Sussex, I am sure it would be well appreciated by the County birders.

Desert Warbler of the eastern race S n nana South Landing, Flamborough
Head on the 19th October, 1991.