Sunday 9 October 2011

Azores: Day 8

Today hasn't been the most productive of days, but it was going to be hard to follow on from an excellent day yesterday in a strengthening southeasterly breeze. Not looking for any sympathy here, but my feet are really messed up. I can hardly walk due to blisters but am currently just wincing through the pain in an attempt to get the kms under the belt.

For the first couple of hours today, Pierre and I staked out the unidentified warbler we had late yesterday evening. Unfortunately nothing appeared, so I guess the bird has moved on or just to another part of the island. We then walked back down through the middle fields to the guesthouse; again no birds.

We got a taxi up to the valleys and did Cantinho today. Midway along the valley near the clearing, Pierre again latched on to the high-pitched "tsiip" of a Nearctic wood warbler. I was on the north side of the valley (which was windswept to say the least today), so missed hearing it but came down to join him on the south side. We had nothing for around half an hour but then, all of a sudden, I saw something flit amongst the canopy and latched on. Double white wingbars but... ah shit! Another Parula, and presumably the same bird seen further down the valley about 10 days ago. It seems everything is sticking; we need some new birds! To be fair to the bird, it was a little stunner - in my opinion even brighter than the bird in Cancelas yesterday, with a cracking orange necklace amongst the beautiful yellow breast.

We moved on pretty quickly, but did not see anything else. Do Vinte was also pretty birdless, and the mood began to slip once again. According to Magic Seaweed, some mildly-exciting low seems to be passing to the northwest of Corvo tonight and tomorrow so perhaps we'll get some new bits in... I sure hope so. I also need to put my feet up and have an early night!

Northern Parula: 1st-winter male in Ribeira do Cantinho
Great Shearwater: c.30 past off the windmills this evening

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