Monday, February 1, 2010

!st February...a veritable bonanza!

First of all, don't forget to visit the Sunday, 31st January entry and " Have Your Say"!

A mixed day with a few showers and rather cold conditions, but tolerable. Little was moving over the sea, Fulmars were around their colony ledges and the Gyr Falcon showed atop McKenzie Island until it appeared to be disturbed by a grazing Roe Deer! Farther north along the Rinns a large pack of Barnacle Geese held a single leucistic bird looking very washed out and "stand alone".The Outer Loch had a few Great Northern Divers , but little else of note.

Moving to oversee the Inner Loch from a favourite park-up point I experienced one of those purple patches so typical of birdwatching. Whether it was serendipity , the state of the tide or what, everything appeared to be laid out in a fairly restricted area and giving good views. A good count of Long-tailed Duck (15 ), numbers of Slavonian Grebe ( 21-28 ) , all three diver species, numbers of Red-breasted Merganser , Eider, Wigeon, Common Scoter and Greater Scaup, all presented a feast of viewing in relatively calm conditions and good " grey " light conditions . Within an hour all had changed, birds had dispersed and waves were advancing on the shore, however, in the time previously, the gently lapping waves below accompanied by the "Ah-oooh" calls of Eider, set against the snow shot hills beyond, was birdwatching par excellence.

Later good views were had of a male Hen Harrier wheeling over a traditional breeding moor. And to finish the day, something I'd not seen to the same extent before, 41 Hooded Crows hanging around on telephone wires previous to entering a local roost.

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