Today was earmarked as the first of two days given over for a census organized by Scottish Natural Heritage within the goose monitoring scheme on Islay to monitor the wintering population of Greenland White-fronted Geese in their traditional haunts. Ostensibly not much different in its operation on Islay to a normal goose count, as it provides an opportunity to count all geese encountered, excepting that it's relevance is of paramount importance given the population of Greenland White-fronted Geese appears to be in decline. The need to monitor such on a frequent basis is crucial at the present time!
The day was glorious, in fact too glorious! The winter sun was in evidence for the whole day, but given its low position visibility was sometimes impaired, rather than enhanced. It's not a phenomenon we suffer from too frequently! Where its meagre warmth never reached, icy conditions still persisted, so it was an interesting day as far as progression too! However the Oa route, which includes the whole southern coast sector, was displayed at its best. Whilst the day produced nothing special, except for a Merlin speeding low across the landscape like an Exocet missile, good views, in excellent light, of various groups of geese was a real tonic.