Weekly English Update: I was seriously expecting the quietest weekend since the start of the spring migration. While passerine numbers are dropping rapidly and the raptor count and ringing come to an end, we had a busy weekend with strong migration as the birds fought the stiff northerly winds. Thursday evening I had a short walk round the bird park and got a close encounter with a light morph Eleonora’s Falcon that was weaving it’s way north just over the tree tops and a Hobby was also doing the same. Just as I was leaving a massive Swift loomed up in front of the car. It was easily double the size of the many Pallid Swifts around it, light grey and heavily mottled and very slow for a Swift. I’m pretty sure it was a Mottled Swift which hasn’t been seen north of the Sahara but didn’t manage more than a record shot before it disappeared off into Jordan. Next morning the first bird in the net was a Black Bush Robin, a first in the hand for me and not too many ringed in Israel. We also had a Little Bittern and Golden Oriole while round the park there were some Barred Warblers, Olive-tree Warbler, Garden Warblers. Overhead there was a constant stream of Pallid and Common Swifts, Sand and House Martins and Barn Swallows. Not too many Honey Buzzards dropped in on Friday but today a steady stream of Honey Buzzards were landing at Lake Anita to drink and 3 Oriental Honey Buzzards were amongst them. A dark morph Montagu’s Harrier was hanging round KM20 and my first Sooty Falcon of the season struggled his way home towards Amrams Pillars. North Beach has seen good numbers of Long-tailed Skuas, Pomerine and Arctic Skuas, Sooty Shearwaters and many terns not to mention a stream of local and foreign photographers. The pools remain a good hang-out with a nice variety of waders including Broad-billed Sandpiper, Red-necked Phalaropes and Kentish Plover chicks fresh from the nest. There were a few more White-winged Terns and a Black Tern but still waiting for the big wave of White-winged Terns ….maybe it’ll be this week! Stay tuned to find out.