Friday, April 17, 2009

Classic Great Northern Divers !!

Given the easterly wind had reduced significantly ( although it did increase later ) sea passage was better than yesterday. A quite marked passage of Manx Shearwater, all south, occurred way off shore, around 200 in an hour,and Gannets were more numerous, although moving in all directions on feeding movements.

Later we had a few "obviously newly arrived" Bar-tailed Godwit at the very head of Loch Indaal and a couple of absolutely classic Great Northern Divers in utterly resplendent summer plumage. Not all that long ago, when doing a diver count, none of the birds were this advanced and either these were newly arrived or they have an ablity to move into new plumage very quickly.Other than Eiders and Red-breasted Mergansers little seemed to be in evidence off shore although 6 Pale bellied Brent Geese at the head of the loch were new.

Much of the remaining time was absorbed by a visit to Finlaggan ( the seat of the Lord of the Isles ), the nigh on essential "distillery tour" and exposure to other essential elements of Islay culture , including a culinary creation by "The Dad" somewhat later.

A demanding day with an even greater demanding ending !!!!

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