Friday, May 22, 2009

21st May,2009.

Still on the quest to determine how much, if any really, we get of skua passage in spring, I completed a seawatch within the morning. Despite a fairly heavy shower belt moving through, when birds might have moved before it or immediately after its passing, the result was again nil. Birds continue to move into the Solway, SW Scotland, before rising to make their overland journey towards the North Sea. Last year Arctic Skuas were seen passing eastwards along the south coast of Islay to either move up the Sound between Jura and the mainland or cross the mainland in a north easterly direction. another thing to determine!! Otherwise, as might be imagined, birds at sea were either local breeders or birds on feeding movements, ie Gannet and Manx Shearwater. A return visit in the afternoon saw very quiet conditions.

Evidence that not all common species have yet arrived and are in breeding quarters came in the form of a hirundine flock forming at Claddach Loch at the onset of rain. Eventually 30/40 Swallows, 10 House Martins and a single Sand Martin sat out the squall together on a convenient fence line. New, additional Sedge Warblers were noticeable and the Whinchat local to home is now in good heart, as are two Cuckoos in advance of 0430hours each morning!!

The Corncrake survey organized by RSPB saw various teams coasting around the island overnight ( a good way to get a reputation!! ), the results from which will be collated later. As birds are possibly still arriving further surveys will be completed. The local situation is a bit complicated this year with either several birds in a given area or ones that can move somewhat quickly!!! I'll do another survey tonight to try and sort out the confusion!!! An even better way to get a reputation!!

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