Sunday 26 August 2007

Mon 14th August to Sun 26th August

Since the last posting the hills of Islay have gradually turned purple. Over the last two years the heather on the Island has suffered badly from heather beetle. This year it has recovered well. The Island looks resplendent in its coat of purple.
Of birds and beasts: An otter and 2 cubs was seen from the Port Charlotte to Portnahaven road on 14.08 (MC). Still in the south of the Island the basking shark, that was first seen off Port Charlotte some weeks ago is still in the area, but has moved south around the Portnahaven area. At Gruinart barn owls have been showing well 16.08 and 21.08, also at Gruinart an elephant hawk moth caterpilar and lots of dragonflies especially common hawkers 21.08 (JRH). On the 24.08 a peregrine, 2 shoveler and 6 snipe were seen at Gruinart. On the 25.08 on the north Rhinns lots of manx shearwaters and gannets were offshore, a whimbrel flew over heading south and a hummingbird hawk moth! was seen.

Tuesday 14 August 2007

Sun 5th August to Sun 13th August 2007

Mixed weather and not much time spent birdwatching.
On the sunny days found a few birds.
The 5th August male and female sparrowhawks at Gruinart (JRH). On the 7th August a pair of bullfinches were seen on the Oa (GJ). On the 8th August there was a spotted flycatcher and a whitethroat at the visitor centre Loch Gruinart (JRH). I had a walk to check some reed beds on the 10th August and saw lots of young sedge warblers and reed buntings flitting in and out of the tall phragmites (JRH). On the 13th August (GJ) saw 2 sandwich terns at Bruichladdich and 200 greylags at Bridgend.

Sunday 5 August 2007

1st August to 4th |August

Lots of reptiles and amphibians about on the island perhaps visable due to the rain showers (no its not Jurassic Park, just Islay). On the 01.08.07 turnstone, twite and 40+ chough at Ardnave (JRH) and 3 toads at Gruinart.
On 02.08.07 chough and a comon lizard at Gruinart (JRH)
On the 04.08.2007 at Gruinart, 2 tawny owls, hen harrier (seen regularly), 3 ravens and another toad.
Also on the 04.08.2007 our overseas correspondent in Paisley reported 5 magpies, 2 of which were attacking pigeons and 2 ravens (good for paisley). At 5.00 am on the 05.08.07 a fox.