Wednesday, October 1, 2008

30th September, 2008.

An attempt to seawatch earned a soaking, but little else, with visibility pretty poor until mid morning too.

For a period the weather settled down allowing a good examination of Loch Indaal. A lot of the smaller waders ( Dunlin, Sanderling and Ringed Plover) had moved on and, of the larger ones remaining, most were well out. Wigeon and Scaup numbers are gradually rising and 29 LB Brent Geese were present compared to the 16 of yesterday. A couple of Whooper Swan had arrived. Unfortunately a Peregrine and male Hen Harrier did their utmost to redistribute everything at intervals making counts difficult at best!!

Loch Gruinart was less disturbed by the wind, showed good numbers of Curlew and a variety of other waders, including a Greenshank. With even a small amount of flooding on the reserve lagoons since the weekend Teal numbers are already rising.

Possibly the best experience of the day was seeing four Golden Eagles together ( two adults and two birds of the year ) a distance from an established eyrie/territory setting thoughts in train of whether breeding has occurred this year at a long abamdoned site. The immature birds were in spectacular condition!! Seeing immature birds on Islay not infrequently pays tribute to the absence of persecution we enjoy here compared to other areas of mainland Scotland!!

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