Tour At A Glance





Single Room Supplement:


Tour Code:

Intermediate with flexible finish times.

Group Size:

Eight plus leaders

Melodious Warbler Northern Waterthrush Woodchat Shrike

Isles of Scilly - Autumn Migration

Date: Tour not currently running
Leaders: Ashley Saunders



Buff-breasted Sandpiper [Gary Thoburn]



What superlatives can we use for the magical Isles of Scilly? Renowned World over as a migration hotspot, and surely one of the best places in the Western palearctic to see species from ‘across the pond’ each autumn. October has long been the traditional ‘Scilly Season’, and this time of year still draws the crowds. With less people visiting these days, fewer places to eat and drink are open through October now and with a greater opportunity for finding our own good birds, we have decided on a September visit for our inaugural autumn tour. Standing at the edge of our archipelago, Scilly is geographically blessed to receive rare vagrants from all points of the compass. Unlike many migration watchpoints, weather is less critical here for producing something of interest. There can be few other destinations where good birds can turn up on any winds! Of course, those classic fast tracking Atlantic depressions are what we need for dumping a Nearctic mega, but each year Scilly also receives a plethora of American shorebirds too such as annual Pectoral and Buff-breasted Sandpipers and American Golden Plover. Scarcities such as Dotterel, Little Stint and Curlew Sandpiper often appear at this time too, and we will be grilling wader flocks for that White-rumped, Semipalmated or Baird’s Sandpiper! Passerines are starting to move in earnest, with Spotted and Pied Flycatchers and Common Redstart good indicator species of movement. Eurasian Wryneck, Firecrest, Melodious and Barred Warbler are expected at this time and we will also be within the arrival period for the first Red-breasted Flycatcher, Yellow-browed Warbler and Red-backed Shrike. Some top American landbirds can also reach Britain during this period, such as Northern Waterthrush, Black and White, Yellow and Blackpoll Warblers. Citrine Wagtail, Western Bonelli’s Warbler and Lesser Grey Shrike from the other direction are other previous offenders though - who knows what will make landfall during our visit? Your tour leader will be Ashley Saunders, assisted throughout by Scilly stalwart Nick Parsons. You can expect to see around 120 species. 


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