Swainson's Thrush from North America turns up on Welsh island in June


Swainson's thrush on Skokholm

Given the lack of fat reserves observed when the Swainson's Thrush was ringed yesterday (it had after all just flown across the Atlantic), it was perhaps no surprise that the bird was still present this morning. The fantastic news was that it was happily feeding in the dense shrubbery of the Farmhouse Courtyard.

We had read that Swainson's Thrushes often select favoured perches to which they periodically return, and so it has turned out to be. Approximately every 40 minutes or so the bird has been returning to the same area of dappled sunlight and cleaning its bill on the branches. Although it has occasionally been pursued by the resident Blackbirds (which have just fledged their young in to exactly the same area), it has generally been unmolested by our local birds.

Given that the bird is showing predictable behaviour, is in an area where a group of birders can observe from a distance without disturbing the bird or Skokholm's fragile habitat and as there is something of a weather window tomorrow, we have decided to press ahead with a twitch.

Despite the clear skies prevalent tonight, the bird has found good feeding and must still be relatively light.