Bluethroats have been arriving in Shetland in small numbers today. I haven’t had time to do a Best Stays piece tonight, so I’m doing a short photo gallery of some Bluethroats I’ve seen over the years. Some readers may not be familiar with this Robin like species, it should be clear where they get their name from!
Bluethroats are less regular in Shetland and along the east coast than they used to be. On my favoured haunt of Out Skerries the high point was in 1981, when an estimated 33 on 12 May had increased to a remarkable circa 55 on the 15th. They do still turn up in small flurries in optimal conditions, for example during rain on 24 May last year five were seen. I’ve never seen that many, and some of the ones I have seen have been very skulking.
All birds below are from Skerries.
Even with my decidedly mixed photographic skills it’s easy to see the appeal of these stunning little birds.