Sunday 18 May 2014


It was just before 7 o'clock this morning when I went out to top up the bird feeders.

I was greeted by the usual sounds of the Curlew, Lapwings and Skylarks and from over the hill the cockerels. There were Sparrows and Greenfinches in the bushes too. Then I heard a call that was very familiar but from a bird that is described as an uncommon passage migrant in Orkney. There had been a few recent reports of this species being seen at various locations around Orkney but no reports as far as I was aware from Burray.

Then I heard it again - Cuckoo, Cuckoo. I grabbed the binoculars and started walking down the track in the general direction of the call to a spot where I could get a good view of the area down the hill towards the village. The bird continued to call and using the old cupped hands behind the ears technique I was able to determine that the bird was to the West of the village and not lurking around a few of the gardens with good cover.

I continued along the footpath trying to get a better fix on where the call was coming from but after ten minutes of calling it stopped and that was that. No visual on the bird.

About an hour later I saw one of the local dog walkers that often goes around a large area of my patch. We had a quick chat about what was about and when I mentioned th Cuckoo they said that they had heard one the other evening but thought they were hearing things, so were a bit relieved that someone else had heard one too.

So that is a new species for my patch and for my Burray list.

1 comment:

  1. They're always good to hear Dave as they are so scarce now. I had my first on Monday evening round some ponds I was surveying in Cheshire.