Whimbrel – first and last dates

Numenius phaeopus – COEGYLFINIR – Passage migrant

Earlier records are summarised in Whimbrel 1994

YearEarliest sightingLast sightingNotes
199315 April22 OctoberSpring maximum – 100 at Gann on 2 May
Autumn maximum – 220 passed Strumble Head on 5 August
199413 April27 SeptemberSpring max – 29 at Skomer on 26 April
Autumn max – 30 at Strumble Head on 30 on 28 August
19959 April28 SeptemberSpring max – 75 at Brownslade on 7 May
Autumn max – 18 at Strumble Head on 26 August
19967 April19 OctoberSpring max – 30+ at Skomer on 1 May
Autumn max – 34 at Strumble Head on 24 August
Single on Skomer on 21 November is a notable late date
199717 April18 OctoberOne probably overwintered on Skomer 1996-97
Spring max – 135 at Brownslade 6 June
Autumn max – 26 passed Strumble Head on 24 July
Two on Skomer in November-December
1998mid-AprilOct-NovTwo birds overwintered on Skomer 1997-98
Spring max – 115 at Castlemartin on 21 May
Autumn max – 370 passed Strumble Head on 5 August
One on Skokholm on 6 December
199917 MarchNovemberOne probably overwintered on Skokholm
Spring max – over 50 at Ramsey on 3 dates mid-April to mid-May
Autumn max – 65 passed Strumble Head on 30 August
200023 March20 NovemberOne probably overwintered on Skokholm
Spring max – 45 at Whitesands on 1 May
Autumn max – 20 at Angle Bay on 18 August
2001mid-March2 OctoberOne probably overwintered on Skokholm
Spring max – 200+ at Whitesands on 6 May
Autumn max – 105 passed Strumble Head on 29 August
Up to 3 in Dec when Skokholm vacated
2002mid-Marchmid-OctoberOne probably overwintered on Skokholm
Spring max – 70 at Freshwater West on 3 May
Autumn max – 21 at Skomer on 1 August
20038 March13 NovemberSpring max – 64 at Skokholm on 28 April
Autumn max – 39 passing Strumble Head on 31 July
One still on Skokholm when Island vacated in December
200413 March30 OctoberSpring max – 60+ Hendre Farm on 3 May
Autumn max – 26 at Cwm-yr-Eglwys on 6 August
20058 MarchOctoberSpring max – 42 at the Gann on 21 May
Autumn max – 55 passed Strumble Head on 4 August
Singles recorded at several places in December on Cleddau
200620 March4 NovemberSingle at Angle Bay on 2 & 6 January (same bird as Dec 2005?)
Spring max – 148 at Whitesands on 29 April
Autumn max – 45 passed Strumble Head on 4 September
200717 March18 NovemberSpring max – 185 at Whitesands on 1 May
Autumn max – 12 at Strumble Head on 1 September
20081 March4 SeptemberSpring max – 64 on the Teifi on 26 April
Autumn max – 22 at Stumble Head on 2 September
20094 April2 NovemberSpring max – 64 at the Gann on 30 April
Autumn max – 65 passing Stumble Head on 9 August
201010 April25 SeptemberSpring max – 41 at Ramsey on 21 April
Autumn max – 23 passed Strumble Head on 21 August
20111 April14 OctoberAt least two over-wintered on Skokholm seen 1st Jan – 22 March
Spring max – 75 at Whitesands on 5 May
Autumn max – light passage up to three birds at a time
20122 April23 OctoberAt least two over-wintered on Skokholm 2011-12
Spring max – 79 at St Davids Head on 1 May
Autumn max – 53 at Porth Selau Beach on 14 September
201310 March13 SeptemberSpring max – 67 at Marloes Mere on 27 April
Autumn max – 1498 seen from Strumble Head on 18 August
201427 March19 SeptemberOne may have overwintered on Skokholm
Spring max – 110 at the Gann on 13 May
Autumn max – 247 passed Strumble Head on 11 August
201521 March25 SeptemberOne assumed to have overwintered on Skokholm
Spring max – 55 at Freshwater West on 30 April
Autumn max – 30 passed Strumble Head on 23 August
One on Skokholm in October-November – over-wintering?
201610 April20 SeptemberSpring max – 140 at Kilpaison on 30 April
Autumn max – none given
201712 April8 OctoberSpring max – 32 at Carew-Cresswell on 2 May
Autumn max – 40 at Skomer on 29 August
20187 March25 NovemberSpring max – 70 at Newport on 2 May
Autumn max – 16 passed Strumble Head on 24 & 27 August
20194 April30 NovemberOne thought to have over-wintered on Skokholm
A leucistic bird at Skokholm on 6&7 May,
Spring max – 45 at Skokholm on 28 April
Possibly same leucistic bird seen at the Gann on 9 July
Atumn max – none given

Records above extracted from the Pembrokeshire Bird Reports which may contain more information.

More about Whimbrel in Pembrokeshire

Whimbrel – 1994

Numenius phaeopus – COEGYLFINIR – Passage migrant

Mathew (1894) noted the Whimbrel as a passing migrant seen on the coast in May and again in September, and Lockley et al. (1949) described it as “a regular and sometimes abundant passage migrant in spring and autumn”.

It is now a frequent visible diurnal migrant, but also passes at night, when it can be heard calling over most parts of the county, and has been seen at lighthouse attractions at the Smalls, South Bishop and Strumble Head.

Spring passage normally begins in mid-April, with advanced birds from 17 March in some years, and continues into June, with a latest record of 23 June. Groups of up to 30 (or even up to 80 in many years) stop off in coastal areas, the saltings of the Cleddau Estuary being particularly favoured, but groups can also be seen on the offshore islands, in coastal fields and around the whole of the rocky outer coast, where small crabs are an important food source, and can be seen passing northwards offshore, with fewer recorded inland. A similar pattern pertains in the autumn from 8 July to 24 October, numbers being similar to spring passage, though a maximum gathering of 110 was at Skokholm on 22 August 1948.

Single Whimbrels were recorded at Skokholm, Martin’s Haven, Sandy Haven Pill and Nevern Estuary during the winters of 1962, 1968, 1982 and 1992. One found on Skokholm when the island was reoccupied on 3 March 1971 may also have wintered. A migrant ringed on Skokholm in August 1967 was recovered in Finland in June 1969.

Donovan J.W. & Rees G.H, 1994, Birds of Pembrokeshire

More about the Whimbrel in Pembrokeshire

Whimbrel – 1894

Numenius phaeopus

A passing migrant; seen on the coasts in May and again in September when it is passing South. Common.

Mr. Tracy writes: “I strongly suspect this bird breeds in the county, but I have been unable to find its eggs I have watched several pairs, during the summer months, so late as the latter end of June, that had every appearance of having nests in the locality, but without success. They then generally leave us about two months, as I do not see them again until the latter end of September.”

The Whimbrel breeds in the Orkney and Shetland Islands, and its nest has not yet been detected elsewhere in the British Islands. On the last day of May, 1884, we were on Skomer Island, where we nearly trod upon a Whimbrel among the fern. The bird ran slowly off with trailing wings, and all the gestures of a bird just started from its nest, until she disappeared the other side of a hillock. We were following in pursuit of a wounded bird at the time, and unfortunately did not pause to search for a nest, and when we returned subsequently to do so we found that we had lost the position, and our investigations were fruitless. It would have been very interesting to have taken eggs of the Whimbrel so far to the south.

Mathew M.A. 1894, Birds of Pembrokeshire and its Islands

More about the Whimbrel in Pembrokeshire

Whimbrel

Numenius phaeopus – COEGYLFINIR – Passage migrant

Whimbrel – first and last dates

Earliest and latest dates for this passage migrant, with notes on over-wintering birds since 1993. Records extracted from the Pembrokeshire Bird Reports

Whimbrel – 1994

Numenius phaeopus – COEGYLFINIR – Passage migrant Mathew (1894) noted the Whimbrel as a passing migrant seen on the coast in May and again in September, and Lockley et al. (1949) described it as “a regular and sometimes abundant passage migrant in spring and autumn”. It is now a frequent visible diurnal migrant, but also passes at […]

Whimbrel – 1980s winter

Numenius phaeopus – COEGYLFINIR – Passage migrant One Whimbrel was recorded in Pembrokeshire for the BTO winter atlas during the winters of 1981-82, 1982-82 and 1983-84. Very few Whimbrels are known to winter in Europe. More about the Whimbrel in Pembrokeshire

Whimbrel – 1949

Species account from the Birds of Pembrokeshire, 1949, by Lockley, Ingram and Salmon.

Whimbrel – 1894

Numenius phaeopus A passing migrant; seen on the coasts in May and again in September when it is passing South. Common. Mr. Tracy writes: “I strongly suspect this bird breeds in the county, but I have been unable to find its eggs I have watched several pairs, during the summer months, so late as the latter end of June, […]