Friday, 8 November 2013

Friday 8th November

Some birds through from the Naturetrek party who were over earlier this week, down on the Oa they had a male Hen Harrier, female Merlin, a flock of around 150 Twite, 25 Whopper Swans flying over the Oa, a Black Guillemot in winter plumage at Bowmore, with around 70 Scaup on Loch Indaal. Off Port Charlotte a 1st winter Arctic Tern was spotted, possibly the same bird that they saw the previous week.  On the Sound of Islay, at Port Askaig, 6 Common Scoter and a Long tailed Duck were added to their list. Yesterday, up at Ardnave, Malcolm had 20 Snow Buntings. Today, James had a Golden Eagle on the reserve at Gruinart. James also had a total count of 1600Golden Plover. Down in the stubble field beside the Coastgard cottages, Michael had a count of 22 Chough along with some Rooks, Jackdaws and Hooded Crows. Over at Gruinart, he had a Golden Eagle, possibly the same one that James saw, a male and female Hen Harrier, a Sparrowhawk spooking up around 80 Chaffinches at Craigens, along at Coullabus a large immature female Peregrine on a fence post! Over at Ballygrant Loch, 2 pr of Mute Swans, 5 Greylags, 4 Mallard, 1 Cormorant and a Heron. A walk through the woods there produced 120 Wood Pigeon, 2 Meadow Pipit, 12 Wren, 9 Robin, 19 Blackbird, 5 Song Thrush, 1 Redwing, 5 Dunnock, 1 Stonechat, 2 Goldcrest, and Treecreeper. Also seen were 5 Coal Tit, 7 Blue Tit, 8 Great Tit and 3 Chaffinches. Returning home Michael had a Golden Eagle at Erasaid on the edge of the reserve at Gruinart, the many Golden Plover, at Ballinaby a female Merlin and round Loch Gorm itself 2 ringtail Hen Harrier

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