Monday, 3 November 2014
Monday 3rd November
Another dry day here on the West of Islay, although I believe that it had been wet down on the Oa and around Port Ellen, no pleasing some folks...Quite a few sightings , so here we go... Ken Chapman who is over with a group of 36 birders from Sandwich Bay Bird observatory in Kent. On Saturday, they had seen a Cackling goose amongst the Barnies along the flats at Gruinart. 2 Ruff were present at Gruinart with 40 Chough seen at Ardnave. On Loch Indaal from Bowmore they saw 3 GND. Yesterday, they noted plenty of Redwings around the Loch Gorm area and further on as they went round the Rhinns, over 200 at least. They had seen 4 different Hen Harriers. At Sunderland/ Rockside there were 2 flocks of Rock Doves on the barley stubble, several hundred in all. They also saw another GND off Port Charlotte. Returning birder, Paul from Nottingham had seen 10 GND as he came over on the ferry on Saturday and he also had a Sandwich Tern drift past the ferry..Yesterday Paul saw 8 Whoopers and 6 Pale bellied Brents on Loch Indaal from the Power station. Up round Ardnave Point, he had a count of 50 Ringed Plover, 1 Grey Plover, 1 Sanderling, 1 Purple Sandpiper and 10 Turnstone. At the reserve at Gruinart, he had a ringtail Hen Harrier and out over the fields behind Bowmore, a male Hen Harrier. There appeared to be a fall of Thrushes overnight, as there were more Redwings and Fieldfares around here this morning, I saw 2 small groups first thing this morning, one of 25 in the field below the house before they took off flying South and there were a further 15 in the trees. Michael had a count of 55 Fieldfare and 70 Redwings as well as the ringtail Hen harrier as he went out this morning. On a flat calm Loch Gorm, he counted 113 Tufted Duck, 1 Goldeneye and a Coot. Later on at Ardnave Loch, he had a male Hen Harrier while on the water 2 Goldeneye, 6 Tufted Duck, 2 Dabchick, 6 Whoopers and a Coot. Also present were 35 Redwing, and 5 Fieldfare. Up at Traigh Nostaig Michael had 12 Snow Buntings, including 3 cracking males. Also there, he had seen 51 Ringed Plover, 29 Sanderling, 4 Turnstone. He saw a total of 8 GND offshore as he walked round Ardnave Point, a juv Gannet offshore too and a distant sighting of a Pomarine Skua pursuing some Kittiwakes. In all going round Ardnave Point, he had a total of 46 Rock Pipits! On the Gruinart estuary, Michael counted 144 Barwits and also 13 Knot. Down at Blackrock he had a raft of 72 Scaup with a male Long tailed Duck in flight. On his way home late afternoon, at Rockside there were 10 Whoopers including a family group of 2 adults with 4 youngsters. Bob today had a a male Kestrel and wee while later on a Peregrine both in the Kilchiaran area. Around midday we headed over to Tormisdale, we had a Golden Eagle down at Loch Gorm, with a further one close to Tormisdale, a total of 10 Buzzards on the overall trip, 2 Moorhens on the Distillery pond behind Port Charlotte and finally coming up the hill to home, on the fence wires, 16 Goldfincheswhile on the overhead wires around 50 Redwings. There were also quite a few Fieldfares to be seen around as well.