Gary Turnbull reported yesterday:
- an Osprey harassed by gulls over the Sorn at Bridgend, then flew upriver
- Juv Iceland Gull near Carrabus, and also 15 Pale bellied Brent Geese at Blackrock
This blog was started on the 1st of May 2007 and aims to provide information about the birds of Islay.
Gary Turnbull reported yesterday:
Not exactly a summer's day a bit on the cool side, so put off cutting the grass, another time and another day...."Big Red" and myself will cut the grass, here in no time at all....
James had sent me through the following email a wee while ago...
"A few birds – I bird watched my way back from the office (yes, I know it is Sunday, but... )
100 Black tailed Godwits – amazingly counted them twice got 100 both times, 1 Ruff, 3 male Gadwall
1 Merlin, Loads of Sand Martins and a scattering of White Wagtails.
All seen from the hides"
An e mail came in today from George E. Jackson with some birds seen by himself and also his wife Pat...
"Not a lot to tell - weather been fine for 2+ days, so garden has had priority. Keep hearing Curlews in the distance then when I look around there's just a cheery Starling laughing at me!!!
Wednesday evening Pat was pleased to hear 4 Chiffchaffs and 1 (our first for the year) Willow Warbler at Foreland. Then I read James's comment about the big arrival yesterday, Thursday. So this morning, Friday, I headed to Foreland again to encounter about 30 Willow Warblers on the same route Pat took, but only heard 1 Chiffchaff. A Grey Heron upped and departed northwards from the small lochan near the 'Tile factory' ruins. [Looking at the remnants of the wall buttresses etc, I wonder whether some speculative archaeologist in a few millennia will claim it as a rectangular stone 'circle' carefully oriented on something!].
Meanwhile, back at Coultorsay there were ca. 90 Greylags on the field below he house, with 14 large Canadas - have to wait and see whether all these move off before long.
The finches continue to clear the sunflower seeds at a prodigious rate.. need to order some more!!!!"
This evening, I received a list of birds seen/ heard around Islay today through from Peter...
"Jack Snipe between Port Charlotte and Bruichladdich seen by Dave Dinsley. First Blackcap of the year at Cornabus seen by Ed Burrell. Cuckoo at Kildalton sent through to Peter by Mary Ann Featherstone"
Peter today had been out. making the most of the sunny day by the sound of things which is just as well as there is some rain forecast in a few days time.. Over at Storakaig, which is on the Glen road between Ballygrant and Mulindry, he counted a flock of 80 Golden Plover.
I read a worrying piece of news earlier on this evening, basically that Motmot Travel have called it a day, with the brother and sister team deciding to retire, they will be missed.. "Gone, but not forgotten."
Peter e mailed me through the following birds seen recently on Islay....
"David Dinsley reports a Carrion Crow at Ghiol on the Oa on Tuesday.
Yesterday, David Wood saw a Magpie at Mid Cragabus while Mary-Ann Featherstone reports from Kildalton that - "The woodpecker is tapping daily. The first Cuckoo arrived yesterday morning."
Some birds seen by James on the reserve at Gruinart...
"Willow warbler invasion- lots of willow warblers arrived yesterday all singing this morning
Geese- pretty much all the geese have gone – moved away mainly on Monday/ Tuesday
Bullfinch on reserve yesterday, Sandwich Tern and Common Sandpiper Bruichladdich yesterday
This morning on reserve, Chiffchaff 2, Redwings still lots around, also seen was a Swallow
And yesterday, Neil MacGillivray, saw a Cuckoo on reserve."
Matthew phoned yesterday evening to say he'd seen an Osprey (tucking into a very large fish) on a roadside telegraph pole overlooking Loch Gorm - he got a photo on his phone but by the time he returned with his better camera, it had cleared off.
As George E. Jackson was driving home from Uiskentuie, yesterday afternoon, there was a Grey Heron on the rocks just north of Bruichladdich - first one he has seen there for at least 3 weeks.
David Livingstone, had seen 3 Sand Martins when he was out on the Golf course at the Machrie this morning, David's first Sand Martins of the year....
Peter had helped Lesley with her WeBS count today from Bowmore to Gartbreck with the following results:
"GND - 3
Heron - 1
Shag - 12
Mute Swan - 1
Brent Goose - 2
Barnacle Goose - 1
Greylag - 6
Eider - 11
Wigeon - 6
Teal - 2
Mallard - 1
Oystercatcher - 60
Grey Plover - 2
Golden Plover - 155
Ringed Plover - 79
Lapwing - 5
Dunlin - 6
Sanderling - 17
Redshank - 5
Curlew - 6
Whimbrel - 1
Snipe - 3
Turnstone - 51
Common Gull - 52
GBB Gull - 51
LBB Gull - 3
Herring Gull - 61
B H Gull - 1
While doing the WEBS we had our first Swallow of the year, plus a White
Wagtail. We went over to Laggan Point later and had a pair of Wheatear
and another Whimbrel.
Finally, this afternoon we've had some consistently lovely, sunny weather!"