The Hoylake “Bird Observatory” Bird Report for 2000-1

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Systematic list -
Red-throated Diver to Grey Phalarope, see February 2002 Newsletter.    
Pomarine Skua to Kittiwake.
Sandwich Tern to Turtle Dove.
Cuckoo to Rock Pipit (below).  
Yellow Wagtail to Blackbird.
Fieldfare to Willow Warbler.
Goldcrest to Carrion Crow . 
Starling to Corn Bunting .   

The status line included for each species is adapted from the Cheshire and Wirral Ornithological Society's bird report.


Cuckoo                               Cuculus canorus

Scarce summer visitor and migrant
Two flew through the front garden as we were moving in on May 13th 2000. One was calling in the back garden on May 11th 2001.


Tawny Owl                           Strix aluco

Fairly common resident
A juvenile sat on the garden wall on the night of Jul 17th 2001. A rare bird in this corner of the Wirral.


Short-eared Owl                   Asio flammeus

Very scarce winter visitor and migrant
One caught a Redshank and ate it on next-door's lawn at about 01.00hrs on Dec 4th 2001.


Swift                                      Apus apus

Common summer visitor and migrant
One to two pairs bred in our neighbour's eaves in both year. Last record for 2000 was Sept 9th, returned on May 5th 2001 and we failed to log the last date for 2001. 150 moved through on May 11th 2001.


Green Woodpecker              Picus viridis

Uncommon resident
One in the back garden on Sept 5th 2000. MGT surprised one on his bike just outside the garden in Sept 2001.


Great-spotted Woodpecker Dendrocopus major

Fairly common resident
Two on Sept 4th and one on Oct 15th 2000 were the only records.


Skylark                              Alauda arvensis

Fairly common thinly spread resident, migrant and winter visitor
In 2000 there were one to seven on three October dates then strong weather movements of 217 on Dec 28th and 120 the following day.

In 2001 first recorded on Sept 16th. October saw strong westerly passage, peaking at 264 on Oct 28th, most of which were over the sea.


Sand Martin                     Riparia riparia

Fairly common summer migrant
The only record of 2000 was a single on Sept 9th. Spring passage started on Mar 15th 2001 and with regular records of up to twelve until Apr 30th. 40 moved N on May 11th. The only autumn record was a single on Sept 26th.


Swallow                            Hirundo rustica

Very common widespread summer visitor
In 2000 recorded from when we moved in more or less daily until Oct 1st, when 30 when south. Four on Oct 12th, two on Oct 14th and two late birds on Nov 15th completed the year. This last record involved two juvs who spend most of the day hawing insect up and down the seafront.

In 2001 recorded from Mar 30th. Passage peaked in late April and early May, with 175 on Apr 30th and 150 on May 11th the highest counts. We neglected to record the departure date.


House Martin                    Delichon urbica

Very common summer visitor
Recorded daily though the summer months, though nest building was attempted in 2000 there was no breeding. 75 were hawking over the seafront on Sept 9th 2000 and the last record of that year came on Oct 14th.

In 2001 first recorded on Apr 19th. Passage peaked on May 11th when 30 moved through. As with the previous species, there were no late records recorded.


Richard’s Pipit                 Anthus novaeseelandiae



In on of the more astounding ornithological events so far, one was found while in the spartina looking through waders on the beach in front of the house on Oct 22nd 2000. Initially it looked exhausted but after ten or so minutes it started bounding round like a typical Richard’s Pipit and eventually flew off towards Hilbre calling.


Tree Pipit                           Anthus trivialis

Scarce local summer visitor and migrant
In 2000 there were singles over on May 14th, Aug 29th and Sept 9th, while in 2001 a total of 10 birds were recorded between Apr 16th and May 11th, with four on the last date the highest day total.


Meadow Pipit                     Anthus pratensis

Fairly common resident and migrant
After the first single on Jun 5th 2000, there was a fairly typical autumn passage between Sept 7th and Oct 12th. The peak occurred in the last two days of Sept with 175 and 150 SW respectively.

In 2001 352 were logged between Mar 23rd and May 7th, then 204 between Sept 28th and Oct 29th.


Rock Pipit                             Anthus petrosus

Scarce winter visitor and migrant
Singles were recorded on Sept 29th and 30th, Oct 1st and 12th 2000 and Oct 28th 2001.

Yellow Wagtail to Blackbird.