Tuesday, 27 September 2016
Monday, 26 September 2016
Back on Saturday, Lesley had a passage of between 60 - 70 Swallows fly past her house close to Carraig Fhada over at Port Ellen. She also saw 30 Pied Wagtail including 2 White Wagtails, a small number of Sanderling and Dunlin and a female Merlin. Today, Lesley had 2 Ruff at Kilnaughton Bay. She was also saying that someone had a pod of 12 Dolphins in the bay just before miday. James this morning, over on Loch Gruinart had 3 Barnacle Geese, 9 Grey Plover, 1 Little Stint, a Curlew Sandpiper and also a Merlin.
Remember the Islay Bird nerds meeting tomorrow evening at 7.30 pm at the visitor centre at RSPB Loch Gruinart, so see you there, if you are around...
Sunday, 25 September 2016
Today, Gary braved the elements and carried out his WeBS count from Port Charlotte back along Loch Indaal to Blackrock. His birds were as follows, 2 GND, 1 RTD, 10 Cormorant, 1 Razorbill, 2 Common Guillemot, 11 Eider, 22 Common Scoter, 16 Oystercatcher, 78 Ringed Plover, 20 Dunlin, 7 Turnstone, 3 GBB Gull, 77 Herring Gull, 29 Common Gull, 17 Gannet, 1 Curlew Sandpiper, 2 Comic Tern and a Merlin.
Gary had also noted several large flocks of Linnets between his house, outside Ballygrant, and Bruichladdich.
Saturday, 24 September 2016
Yesterday, Gary had seen a male and then a female Hen Harrier out over the moorland towards Finlaggan. He also saw a White tailed Eagle over the hills behind Ballygrant. Up behind Bunnahabhain, Gary had a small mixed flock consisting of Blue Tits, Great Tits, Coal Tits, a single Long tailed Tit, Chaffinch, 5 Goldcrest and a male Blackcap. A Golden Eagle was out over the hills behind there as well. Returning back down to Bunnahabhain, Gary spotted a Water Shrew on the track. Out on the Sound of Islay, Gannets were seen by Gary. Here at home after the heavy, squally rain, this afternoon out on the game/ cover crop there was a mixed flock of 60 Linnet and Twite along with a few Goldfinches. A couple of Wrens were present hopping about on the stone wall. Early this evening, while I was outside I heard various birds alarm calling, a quick look around and I saw a Sparrowhawk fly past, low down, about 6 feet off the ground...
On Tuesday evening (27th Sept), the bird nerds will be meeting up at the Visitor centre at RSPB Loch Gruinart at 7.30pm, so if you are around feel free to come along.
Friday, 23 September 2016
Not a lot to report tonight, but I saw a Grey Wagtail down below here, on the lawn and then it flew down towards the stream. A Great Tit was up the house too, the first for some time. Later on, down at Gartmain, 4 Pale bellied Brents were resting up along with 8 Mute Swan. There also some Barwits probing about nearby. The wind is picking up this evening as I write the blog, with the ferry departing later on this evening, rather staying overnight and departing tomorrow at 7am...
Thursday, 22 September 2016
Yesterday, Gary had a Kestrel out in front of his house and then shortly afterwards a ringtail Hen Harrier out over the moorland, behind his house. Today, Gary and Bob had been out round the Loch Gorm area noting lots of Meadow Pipits, Skylarks and Stonechats present along with a second year male Hen Harrier, a ringtail Hen Harrier and also a juv. Peregrine on a fence near to Saligo. On Loch Gorm itself, they saw 4 Dabchick, 100 Teal, 30 Tufted Duck, 25 Mallard and 7 Heron. 6 Buzzard were counted on their way round the loch! Late afternoon, at the top end of Loch Indaal, Louise had a count of 152 Red breasted Merganser, lots of Oystercatcher, 2 Pale bellied Brent, Barwits present as were Wigeon, Teal and Pintail.
Many thanks to Jim Dickson for sharing his sightings with us while he has been over for the last fortnight or so.
Wednesday, 21 September 2016
Many thanks to James for writing the blog while I was over on the mainland over the past 10 days or so.
On Monday (19th) Jim's top birds included 6 Black Guillemot off Bruichladdich Pier, a GND in summer plumage on Loch Indaal, and off the rocks at Port Charlotte 65 Common Scoter. Up at Craigens/ head of Loch Gruinart, the Greenland White fronted Goose was still present amongst the Greylags as well as 31 Pale bellied Brent Geese. At Bowmore, Jim had a further 12 Pale bellied Brent and also 80 Tufted Duck. Finally at Machir Bay, Jim heard a Water Rail in the reedbed there. Mandy saw a Barn Owl on a fence post close to the former Kilchoman school last night and earlier on had spotted a Barnacle Goose down at "smelly corner". Yesterday, Bob and Jim had seen 5 Pale bellied Brents and also a Greenshank, 35 Pied Wagtail and a juv. Peregrine at the head of Loch Gruinart. Up at Gortantoid, they saw 4 Yellowhammer, 2 Song Thrush and 6 Reed Bunting. At Rockside, a male Sparrowhawk was spotted. Out over the crag behind Kilchoman, 2 adult and a juv Peregrine as well a single Wheatear. At Ballinaby, 250 Linnets and 70 Rock Dove were counted, up round in the scrubby willow past Coille, 60 Lesser Redpolls with a distant Golden Eagle seen up at Sanaigmore. Today, in the rain/ squally showers, Bill Allan from the mainland had been out with Jim and they had a covey of 16 Red legged Partridge near to Skerrols, Bridgend.