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My local country park, Cosmeston Lakes, has been awash with migrating birds this past week. And it’s not just me getting better at finding them – according to birders who’ve been checking the area much longer than I’ve lived nearby, this has been a bumper year for sightings.

180901 Redstart female 2408180901 Redstart male 2408

On 24 August I found two Redstarts, a male and another that may have been a female or an immature bird that hadn’t yet developed its full adult colouration.

180901 wheatear 2408

Also on the 24th I had a very fleeting view of a Wheatear that popped up from grass to fencepost, then was off in the blink of an eye.

180901 whinchat 2708

On the 27th my birding friend Della texted me to say she’d found a Whinchat. That was the fastest I’d ever walked to Cosmeston and, luckily, the bird waited for me – and, in fact, stayed around most of the week so I saw it several times.

180901 common whitethroat

180901 chiffchaff180901 willow warbler

During my frequent visits to Cossie this week, I’ve seen ones and twos of Whitethroat and Chiffchaff, and tens of Willow warblers. These are the ones I spotted on the 30th.

180901 redstart 2908

Also on 30 August, I spotted another Redstart and, from the dark head colours, I could tell this one was definitely a male.

180901 pied flycatcher

The week ended with a bang! My birding friend, Graham, let me know that he’d seen a Pied flycatcher with a small group of Spotted flycatchers, a most unusual visitor. Luckily, I was on the coastal path heading homeward so was able to divert towards Cosmeston and, with Graham’s help, got distant views of this beautiful little bird catching flies along the tree line. What a stunning week it has been!