Significant shorts : Twitchers' gale alert

Birdwatchers were yesterday on alert for rare birds blown off course to Britain and Ireland by gales.

Most of the birds, blown off-course while migrating to South America, have been sighted in extreme western and northern locations but some reports have raised hopes of more widespread appearances. Sightings include a black-and-white warbler on St Mary's, Isles of Scilly, a red- eyed vireo near Ballycotton, Co Cork, Ireland, and a Swainson's thrush in the Outer Hebrides. Charlie Bain