Tuesday, 26 August 2014

Azores August 2014 - update 1

Just a quick update after arriving here on the Azores on Friday evening. As usual I skipped Sao Miguel and landed on Terceira. Home of the best place in the Western Palearctic for American waders. And it has delivered again, this early in the season, with two new Semipalmated Sandpipers - an adult on 23rd-24th and then a juvenile on 25th; this latter bird to my knowledge being the first juvenile American wader of autumn 2014 in the WP. Right on cue.
Short-billed Dowitcher Cabo da Praia, Terceira

adult Semipalmated Sandpiper Cabo da Praia, Terceira

adult Hudsonian Whimbrel Cabo da Praia, Terceira
Add to this a few familiar faces - a Short-billed Dowitcher that turned up as a juvenile early last September, two Hudsonian Whimbrels and 2 Semipalmated Plovers - then a late August session there isn't too bad. Also a Little Stint, two Ruff, a Common Sandpiper and a Curlew Sandpiper have padded things out too.
Sowerby's Beaked Whales between Terceira and Graciosa
Got the ferry this evening from Terceira to Graciosa, and after the news of two Trindade Petrels off Faial on Saturday our hopes are quite high. A handful of Sooty Shearwaters, lots of Great Shearwaters and some jumping beaked whales - Sowerby's? - were the highlights of a pleasant crossing. Now the serious pelagics from Graciosa start tomorrow and, as has always been the case, the first task early tomorrow morning will be making the chum at the harbour.

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