Sunday, 28 February 2016

Sunday 28th February

Saturday is day that most folk either come or leave Islay and yesterday was no exception. Pat and Angie from Yorkshire headed on to the Cairngorms while Gordon and Pauline Yates ("The Rochdale birders") headed home. David and Jenny left on the early evening ferry, but fitted in some more birdwatching, and what a day, seeing 4 Golden Eagles, On the loop round the Rhinns, they saw 2 Goldies, another was seen up past Killinallan and the final Goldie was seen over the hills out past Loch Skerrols.. Other birds seen were  8 Goldeneye on Loch Gorm, a flock of over 30 Chough at Machir Bay and some Twite at Killinallan. In fields adjacent to Loch Skerrols, they counted 66 Woodpigeons, their largest number of Woodpigeons during their stay. Thanks to you all for sharing with us your birds. Martin had taken a walk round Loch Skerrols mid week seeing Wren, Blue Tit, Coal Tit, Tree creeper, Buzzard, Grey Heron, Goldeneye, Tufted Duck, Mallard, Teal, Wigeon, Mute Swan and Whitefronted Geese and then he tucked into a couple of Marshmallows for his efforts....New arrivals, Mark Holling with his 2 colleagues had seen the cackling Goose over amongst the flock of 500 Barnies at Kinnabus. They also spent time looking through another flock of around 1500 Barnies in the Cornabus valley and found a pale bellied Brent amongst them. Further along the road towards Kintra, they saw 130 Chaffinches, 60 Skylarks, and 10 Mipits. While down on the Oa itself, they also saw a distant Golden Eagle and also a pair of Chough. Late afternoon, they saw 3 Scaup and a raft of 25 Common Scoter on Loch Indaal. Chris Mills and his group from Norfolk Birding also arrived over yesterday. At Kennacraig, before the ferry left, a pair of Goosander flew past, while in the water was an adult female Velvet Scoter. From the ferry during the sailing, they saw 6 RTD, 36 GND, 7 Slav Grebes, a raft of 14 BTD, 20 RB Merganser, 2 Common Scoter. As they approached Port Askaig, a Golden Eagle was seen over Jura. Coming along Loch Indaal, a Glaucous Gull was spotted and finally 2 Whooper Swan were seen flying in off the sea at Machir Bay, flying in towards Loch Gorm. On our way out Bowmore yesterday, there were 13 Eider, along at Blackrock, 4 RB Merganser were close in with 9 Pale bellied Brents on the water's edge there too.

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