Tours

Ref:
Date:
Location:
Photographer:

Article text

Saturday 6th – Saturday 13th October 2018

GOLDEN ISLES OF SCILLY – AUTUMN MIGRATION

The Isles of Scilly, an archipelago lying 28 miles southwest of Land’s End is famous for being Europe’s top location for migrant and rare birds.

They consist of 5 inhabited and around 50 uninhabited islands which offer birds the first and last landfall for thousands of miles. Over 400 species have been recorded on the islands, more than any other single site in Europe.


Tour Leader: Steve Grimwade
Maximum Group Size: 8


Days 1 - 7
At this time of year depending on weather, almost anything can appear from all points of the compass. It is not unusual to see birds from North America alongside birds from Asia.

Common species on the islands in October can include Common Firecrest, Black Redstart and Northern Wheatear, although it is the rarities that keep the adrenaline going.

From North America recent visitors have included Northern Waterthrush, Wilson’s Snipe, Upland, Buff-breasted and White-rumped Sandpipers, Hudsonian Whimbrel, Black-and-White Warbler, Swainson’s and Grey-cheeked Thrushes, Scarlet Tanager, Sora, American Robin, Red-eyed Vireo and Rose-breasted Grosbeak.

From the east Pied Wheatear, Citrine Wagtail, Jack Snipe, Red-flanked Bluetail, Pallas’s Leaf and Paddyfield Warblers and Olive-backed and Red-throated Pipits may appear, whilst Yellow-browed Warbler, Richard’s Pipit, Common Rosefinch, Red-breasted Flycatcher, Eurasian Wryneck and Red-backed Shrike are annual visitors to these beautiful islands.

There is a huge variety of habitat, from sea cliffs, reedy pools, coastal moorland, sandy beaches and both deciduous and Pine woodlands, so it is not difficult to see why this wonderful place is so popular. There are few vehicles on the islands, which makes birdwatching and walking relaxing and enjoyable. There is also a tearoom or two that we will definitely be visiting!

Temperate conditions on the islands attract some interesting species including the Prickly Stick Insect. Monarch Butterflies from the United States are recorded some years, whilst Common Dolphin and Harbour Porpoise are frequently seen and the occasional whale offshore.

Our superb accommodation is on the largest of the islands, St Marys and just a five minute walk to the quay. From here inter-island launches take birders to other inhabited islands, Bryher, St Agnes, Tresco and St Martins. After a good day’s birding we will enjoy a hearty meal at a local restaurant and later take a stroll to the local club, where it is customary to take part in the nightly log-call whilst enjoying a drink in the bar.

Fine food, fresh air, exercise and beautiful scenery are in store for all on this trip, the birds being merely a bonus!
Overnight: St Mary’s

Tour includes
Ferry/Helicopter/Plane from Penzance/Lands End to St Mary’s
Half board accommodation for 7 nights
Transfers from Quay/Airport to Guest House
2 Inter-Island boat trips
Full guiding throughout


Not included
Travel Insurance
Lunches
Drinks and items of a personal nature


Pace
Moderate with four to five miles walking per day

Birds
Expect around 100 species

Ground Price: £895

Ferry Price: £100

*Air Price: £180 (Price is for Skybus until Helicopter prices are available)

Total Tour Price by Ferry: £995

Total Tour Price by Skybus: £1075

Single Supplement: £100

Deposit: £250


*Please see our tours page regarding flight costs