Friday, 22 October 2021

Friday 22nd October

A brighter, warmer, sunnier day with only 1-2 showers and lighter SW winds. 

Lauren Stewart sent in a note to say that the RSPB had carried out another goose count on the Gruinart Reserve this afternoon and had a total of 27,117 Barnies, 515 White-fronts and 7 Pink-footed Geese. There were also 4 White-tailed Eagles (2 adults, 2 juvs), a Great Northern Diver and a Merlin between Ardnave point and Nave Island this morning. 

Mark Shields saw a Carrion Crow at Smaull today. 

I ventured south to Portnahaven this afternoon spending half an hour confirming that there were no seabirds moving off Frenchman’s Rocks. However, I did see, what I believe was the first sizeable flock of Redwings on Islay this autumn, with one group of 60 and another of 20 birds. I also bumped into a visiting birder from WWT who had seen a Ring Ousel on the Gruinart Reserve a couple of days ago – the only one reported this autumn so far?

Teresa Morris had been out and about today, visiting Saligo north, Loch Gorm, and east side of Loch Gruinart, though commented that birding was comparatively quiet. Loch Gorm held 34 White-fronts, 21 Greylags, 1 Whooper Swan and 8 Tufted Ducks. Gruinart at low tide was packed with Barnacle Geese and at dusk there was a spectacular display of the geese disturbed by a White-tailed Eagle. Other birds on sand  included 3 Pale-bellied Bent Geese, 3 Herons, 47 Wigeon, 25 Oystercatchers, 42 Redshanks, 2 Greenshanks and 3 Curlew.. Back at Craigens Teresa noted a couple of Fieldfares - still quite scarce so far this autumn. 

Thanks again Teresa for providing another lovely photo to accompany today's blog:

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