Monday, April 27, 2009

26th April, 2009.

Well, certainly a day to be out of convalescence!! A call that a couple of American waders had turned up at RSPB Loch Gruinart Reserve and needed pinning down sent me , and a few others(!) hightailing up to the floods. Fairly quickly the Lesser Yellowlegs was "sorted" and, more progressively, as views improved, a Long-billed Dowitcher comfortably identified. And then , for a brief period, the male Green-winged Teal appeared nearby such that three American birds were scoped together!! In the background a Corncrake called at intervals whilst, at the head of the loch, but on the other side, almost 50 Barnacle Geese and a single Pink footed Goose fed contentedly.
The era of the mobile telephone came into its own and we managed to "call in" most of the visiting Argyll Bird Club members before they departed for the afternoon ferry. What a day!!
On a more routine front it was obvious more Northern Wheatears had arrived, as had several White Wagtails, 20/30 Sand Martin, a large party of Whimbrel further south on the Rinns and 2/3 Common Sandpiper at traditional areas. Late in the afternoon , and as I returned home, three Greater Canada Geese were noted. Much later, and as I again returned home, a lone, somewhat forlorn looking Barn Owl atop a fence post, scanned around in pouring rain in a frustrating attempt to locate prey.
All in all, an extremely good day with a reflection on Islay of the very many good birds which have been recorded in the UK over the past couple of days!!

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