Wednesday 22 October 2014

Wednesday 22nd October

The wind may have dropped since yesterday, but it is still quite windy, and as far as I know, the ferries resumed their normal timetable again.... Back on Monday, the East Anglian birders had seen 2 Pect. Sandpipers along with some Snipe out from the old hide at Gruinart and yesterday they returned and found another out from the new hide and also there were some Redshank, 6 Greenshank and 8 Pintail. Up at Bridgend/ Blackrock area, 65 Scaup and 2 RB Merganser were present. Yesterday, David Protherough had seen 8 Whoopers over Kilnaughton Bay and up on the reserve on the Oa, a male Hen Harrier while on the loch at Kinnabus, Greylags and Whitefronts were seen while back down at the Maltings at Port Ellen, 2 Pale bellied Brent have been present over the past few days. Yesterday,the Horwich birders had a flock of over 300 Golden Plover over at Ballinaby. Amongst the Barnies out in front of the new hides they managed to read some Darvic rings and Steve Percival duly was able to say that one of the geese was rung 10 years ago, one of a small flock of "wandrers" that are seen around Islay while another one was very "faithful" to where it was seen, being rung 5 years ago, another was quite faithful too but was in Ireland earlier this year! The last goose was only rung 2 years ago and Steve did not have so many sightings of it on his database! Thinking back, I asked Steve about the Barnie that turned up a few years back in New York, it was seen quite often that winter in the States but not seen since! From the old hide the Horwich birders yesterday morning had seen a male Hen Harrier, Peregrine, 5 Whoopers, along with Teal, Wigeon, Mallard, Whitefronts, Barnies, Heron, Curlew and Lapwing. From the new hide, they had good close sightings of Whitefronts, Barnies, Greylags, Mallard, Teal, Pintail, Wigeon, Curlew and Snipe. A Redwing and 2 Roe Deer were seen along the woodland trail as they returned to their car. Last night as we headed dopwn to Port Charlotte, just before we entered Bruichladdich, a Barn Owl was perched on a fence post at the side of the road, the first we had seen for some time, but then again perhaps we should go out more often, rather than being housebound! This morning in the garden, there was a small flockof 37 Redwings for a short time. Robin this morning had 2 flocks of Golden Plovers over at Ballinaby, each over 200. He also had 2 Golden Eagles between Sunderland and the Gruinart turnoff, one a "well marked" immature Eagle, the other an adult bird. Later on, Robin had a Coot up on Ardnave Loch.

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