Sunday, 12 October 2014

Siberian Rubythroat - Levenwick

So news broke of the male Siberian Rubythroat the day before we were due to arrive on Mainland Shetland, this was music to our ears especially as the mid weeks Whites thrush and myrtle warbler had both departed.

Arriving at Aberdeen airport and just about to board our connecting flight to Lerwick news broke of the bird still being present.

An hour later we were dropping our luggage at Sumbrugh lighthouse (our base for the next week) and travelling the short distance to Levenwick.  The weather was grim, drizzle and a fairly brisk wind and after a couple of hours no sign of the bird despite at least 50 birders surrounding the small garden it had taken residence.

Cold and wet we decide to move on, a few hours past and all we could muster were a couple of Yellow brows.  Then news came through that the bird had been relocated just 1/4 of a mile away in another garden.

Back in Levenwick we find the crowd huddled in someones driveway where the bird had been seen. Some brief views were seen but the bird didn't really give itself up for another hour or so, showing superbly under a small sycamore.

We saw the bird daily but again all brief views, and wasn't until Tuesday that the weather really turned awful and there was no news of the bird by 11am,  We decided to past by and give it a go from the car, it was lashing it down very windy but the driveway was fairly sheltered from both sides, we parked blocking the drive still sat in the car we was amazed when the bird showed just after a couple of minutes and performed well just for the four of us.

These pics were taken in poor light and awful conditions but what a performer!!


  1. It doesn't get much better than that. The memories of that hour in the car watching the rubythroat down to 15-20 feet will live on for a very long time.

  2. Brilliant. And you had a few good birds at the Lighthouse too? We vacated it as you arrived, and we saw very little there all week!

    1. we slogged the patch daily with little reward, tho an OBP up the road on our last day made up for our efforts, cheers.

  3. Great shots of the Rubythroat and probably the bird of the decade for me !!

  4. Defo David, will be one never to forget......